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That’s what my colleague said yesterday, when I said that my
new presentation has three themes:
Mobile is irrelevant;
Money is meaningless; and
Capitalism is dead.
I wondered what she meant by polemic, so checked out the definitions online and Wikipedia
defines it quite well: a polemic is “a
contentious argument that is
intended to establish the truth of a specific belief and the falsity of the
contrary belief. Polemics are mostly seen in arguments about very controversial
I also found another definition I prefer from Merriam-Webster
which is that a polemic is “an aggressive controversialist”.
2012 didn’t really see any new technology outcomes. I look
around the house today and see an iPad, iPhone and other things, but nothing
essentially radically new from 2012 that’s big and different. But something is about to happen that will
change things fundamentally.
For the last decade,
I’ve been a fan of the Eurozone.
It’s created a lot of
business for many of us.
The Financial Services
Action Plan (FSAP), the forty or more Directives, the Single Euro Payments Area
(SEPA) and all that stuff has been good for business for consultants,
technologists and for some bankers too.
But life is what
happens to you whilst you’re busy making other plans, so the bank plan has
encountered a rocky course in recent times.
As mentioned yesterday, the regulator tries to keep up with
the banks who try to keep up with customer, and I said that banks often
innovate too slowly.
There are many examples of this, but the one that I come
back to regularly is Chip & PIN.
Chip & PIN has been an enormous success, lauded and
applauded by the Payments Council and now emulated worldwide with just the USA
The program was agreed in principle back in 2000 through
APACS, the Association of Payments Clearing Services, and the implementation
plan sorted out in 2003. The EMV-based
Chip & PIN program was introduced to the UK in 2005 and made mandatory in
The great news is that after Chip & PIN was introduced card
fraud decreased considerably, with lost and stolen cards down over half …
In the report, the ECB calls Bitcoin “the most successful — and
probably most controversial — virtual currency scheme to date.”
The ECB goes on to say that the concept of Bitcoin stems from
the Austrian school of economics, where business cycle theory developed by
Mises, Hayek and Bohm-Bawerk floated the idea that virtual currencies could be
the starting point for ending central bank money monopolies.
We had a great debate at the Financial
Services Club last night, picking up on that perennial debating point: do banks
In the pro-branch corner were Anthony
Thomson, co-founder of Metrobank and Ron Whatford, former Chief Experience
Officer with Lloyds Banking Group; in the anti-branch corner were Mark Mullen,
CEO of First Direct and Brett King, author of Bank 2.0 and founder of
I spent a day strategising with one of the Middle Eastern
banks about the launch of a direct bank service. One of the key questions they asked me is: do
we organise the back office in the same way as our contact centre and internet
The easy answer would be yes, but that would be wrong. The answer is no. No way. Nada. Forget it.
A direct bank is a very different beast to an integrated