Last week Chinese financial services company Ant Financial raised a $14 billion funding round giving it a valuation of up to $150 billion, a staggering figure by any tech industry standard. While the image of 150 so-called unicorns jumping and cavorting wildly in front of this writer's eyes comes forth much too easily, this shows how quickly the global FinTech market is being transformed. The British have seen the future coming and for the past decade have been talking to China in depth about FinTech, and more recently, blockchain. It's (literally) beginning to pay dividends. Much civility and diplomacy ensued with many introductions and cultural exchanges with some jokes from Lord Wrigglesworth, but the real interest came when the floor was open for questions.
In what The New York Times is calling The Great AI Awakening and Forbes has dubbed The Year of AI, 2017 is shaping up to be obsessively focused on artificial intelligence, a field that has been around for awhile (remember playing checkers against a computer?) Because the technology has finally reached its tipping point, AI, and its close relative machine learning, have taken a variety of industries by storm, bringing self-driving Ubers to the streets of San Francisco (and then carting them away); robotic vacuum cleaners to dirty household floors; and natural language processing to chat bots and IVR communications. With AI already embedded into these industries, it's easy to find examples of how the technology is shaping fintech. Below are eight areas of fintech into which AI has made inroads. Each area is ranked and rated (out of 5 stars) based on how it is currently influenced by AI and based on AI's potential to add value.
Through 2017, we have seen technological advancements, new regulatory policies, and ever demanding customers reshape the banking industry's landscape. For some time now, incumbents of the financial sector have been under pressure to address the demands of the well-informed millennial customer while staying relevant and profitable at the same time. Gone are the days when banks viewed FinTech companies as disruptors; today, they are partners that are pairing up to take on the challenges of a digital-first world.
Despite pandemic-induced delays, 2021 was still a strong year for growth in the financial technology, or fintech, industry. As the world gets used to the "new normal" way of life, what can we expect going forward in fintech? According to CB Insights' latest "State of Fintech" report, the third quarter of 2021 was the second-highest on record for fintech financing with an impressive 147% increase year-over-year. So, what does 2022 hold for fintech? Embedded finance, as the name suggests, empowers companies to offer consumers credit without having to leave their platform.
There is a war a-brewin', but this war will be fought with wits and not brute strength. Ever since Russian President Vladimir Putin's declaration that "the nation that leads in AI (Artificial Intelligence) will be the ruler of the world," the press and analysts have created hysteria regarding the ramifications of artificial intelligence on everything from public education to unemployment to healthcare to Skynet.