Far from slowing down, the fintech revolution has yet to scratch the surface of its disruptive potential, believes Rich Ricci, formerly CEO of Barclays Corporate and Investment Banking.
Ricci, who has invested in a number of fintech startups since his departure from Barclays Bank, has penned an op-ed
piece for City AM, setting out the potential for tech-led innovation in overhauling antiquated banking practices.
A colourful character, Ricci was singled out by the tabloid press as a poster child for big bank excess alongside Barclays' former investment banking chief Bob Diamond. The negative publicity was water off a duck's back to Ricci, a keen horse racing fan who named one of his stallions as the 'Fatcatinthehat'.
With investments in FreemarketFX, BetBright, and Aquis Exchange, Ricci is now firmly putting his money on a range of new companies who he believes can outpace the incumbents by moving faster, learning faster, and reacting faster to market, regulation and technology changes.
These new contenders can focus on providing an integrated customer experience first, he says, rather than seeing this as an additional layer on top of their fragmented service offerings.
"While some are saying that interest in fintech is slowing, I don’t personally believe we are even scratching the surface," he writes. "From where I’m sitting, it is clear that the nature of financial services is undergoing a fundamental shift to meet the needs of younger, technology-savvy generations in a much broader pantheon of activities.
"As innovative as traditional financial institutions try to be, they will continue to be hampered by their legacy systems and processes. I see the banking landscape continuing to change rapidly as fintech companies with viable products, talented management and clever marketing using traditional and new media take market share. These are exciting times indeed. Moving fast, nimbly and efficiently to capitalise on opportunities is the key."