Money 20/20 Europe: The big themes from day two

The second day of Money 20/20 Europe in Amsterdam saw more FinTech leaders come together to discuss some of the burning industry issues. Here are the top themes from day two:

What’s in a brand?

The rise in financial services companies becoming aggregators, platforms and one-stop-shops raises questions about the importance of company-specific branding – today’s big FinTech brands could become tomorrow’s white-labels.

But, according to Nigel Verdon, CEO & Co-Founder at Railsbank, brand still plays a crucial role and, in fact, is being used strategically by non-financial companies to enter financial services and gain market share. Recent research conducted by Railsbank found that the younger demographic is more likely to consider banking with trusted non-financial brands that have a high Net Promoter Score (NPS) – a widely used metric which assesses customer experience and branding.

“There’s a shift we’re seeing of using a high NPS score – in an industry that has massively low NPS scores – and taking those consumers and that data to develop new interactions and a digital grip on the consumer through the brand,” Nigel said, explaining that non-financial brands entering the financial services space are able to significantly increase their engagement with the customer as a result.

But it’s not just consumers that are motivated by branding. Creating a strong brand as an employer is also crucial to attracting and retaining the best talent, says Dora Ziambra, Chief Operating Officer at Azimo. “For us it’s hugely important,” she said. “Especially with those who are entering the workforce now, we see a lot more people joining companies because of their mission, their values, and not only because of what they do. That has to be reflected in the way we treat our customers, but also our employees.”

Winning customer trust

The focus on customer expectations and outcomes was a continued theme in today’s sessions. Shola Akinlade, Co-Founder & CEO at Paystack, explained the importance of building trust – particularly in markets where digital payments are a relatively new experience for the consumer.

“It’s important to build with trust in mind,” Shola said of Paystack, which was acquired by Stripe in 2020 and provides payments infrastructure in African markets. “We tell ourselves at Paystack that every time we let one customer down, we are letting the entire payments industry down, because that person is someone who won’t pay online the next time… It’s harder to convince consumers that we have the right intentions.”

Reliability is a key foundation in building that trust, which is no easy feat, particularly for rapidly scaling businesses that are also trying to innovate at pace. “The thing about scale is the bigger you get, the better you have to get at payments,” Shola said. “If you think about five years down the line, I think there is so much more globalisation that will happen in payments. And I think you need to be able to receive payments from somebody anywhere in the world.”