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Insights

Summer 2019

Surf’s Up: How to Ride the FinTech Wave Rather Than Be Swept Over

By Elizabeth A. DeVos, Dowse Bradwell "Brad" Rustin, IV, Randall L. Saunders

West Virginia Banker

Reprinted with permission from the West Virginia Banker

Any banker that has not felt the current building around personalized financial services has not read a newspaper, used a mobile phone, or turned on the television in the last five years. While initially, many traditional community, regional, and national banks pushed back and fought against the tide of FinTech; now, innovative and growing banks are embracing these companies, driving revenue growth, and building partnerships that retain customers, drive deposits, and lower costs. Traditional banks that viewed growth as a matter of acquiring others, building branches, or merging have now found new opportunities embracing FinTech. However, to ride this wave requires significant institutional knowledge and the right approach to risk management.

From 2010 to the third quarter of 2017, more than 3,330 new technology-based firms serving the financial services industry have been founded, 40% of which are focused on banking and capital markets.1 The financing of these firms has been growing rapidly, reaching $22 billion globally in 2017, a thirteen-fold increase since 2010.2 Lending by FinTechs now makes up 36% of all personal loans, from less than 1% in 2010.3 Banks can either become part of this wave, or can be swept by and under.