Starting next year, most merchants in Germany have to provide a receipt for their customers after a purchase. If you have travelled or lived in other countries, this might be very normal to you. I know quite well the signs in cafes and restaurants in India that say “If you don’t receive a receipt, consider your meal free”.
Providing a receipt is not a legal requirement in India, but it was implemented by merchants themselves in order to avoid stealing from employees, but in Germany, it is a legal requirement. The legislator wants to prevent tax fraud and is hoping that more merchants will record accurate sales numbers, and thus, tax payments will increase.
Since all of us have started to use the word FinTech, the industry has seen a few changes already. In total, we can see three waves of FinTech development (see also my Slideshare of 2016 about this development):
Wave #1: FinTech startups attack (2009 – 2014): Mainly due to changed regulation, better technology and cheaper costs to found a startup.
Wave #2: Banks fight back (2014 – 2015): Banks recognised the threat of FinTech startups and decided to compete with FinTech startups on their level (“FinTech killer”)
Uber has disrupted the taxi business around the world and has removed friction like no other from a complex industry. That is the reason the company is often being used as an example for the financial service industry.
Personally, I am more interested in the “Spotify of banking?” than “Uber of Banking”. Why is that you might ask? The answer is – as so often – data. Let me explain you what I mean.
If you are a long time Spotify user you might have started using the music streaming service when there was no proper alternative for your needs. But this changed during the last year: today you can choose among many different providers including Apple, Amazon and Google. There might be plenty of reasons why people don’t change but if you talk to a long term Spotify user about switching the service you will hear one reason for not doing so very often: Spotify knows me too well.
Today is my birthday. After New Years this is probably the best day for One to take a step back and think about what we are doing with our life at the moment and what the goal is for the following years. I have a clear “five year plan” in my mind: to launch my own FinTech company.
During my Masters program in 2012/13 I had already written a business plan for a crowdfunding idea and was considering to dive deeper into this opportunity after my studies. Luckily, as I would say now, plans have changed and I joined figo instead. The last years have been quite a ride and I couldn’t be happier and prouder of what we have achieved so far (and no end in sight ?). I know the FinTech startup world is where I belong and I also know that I will be launching my own startup at one point. In my position at figo I am working on a daily basis with some very smart developers and entrepreneurs who are about to launch new companies. This is not just very inspiring but is also ensuring that I am not losing track of my own goal to launch a FinTech company.
I’ve aimed for one blog post per week and have already missed out the second week. Cannot say it was the best start. Even though I can blame my first winter in Berlin that caused my illness, rather I will keep up to my promise and write an additional blog post this or next week.
I was wondering what to write about in my first proper FinTech related blog post and was hoping for some inspiration in the news but thanks to POTUS #45 there is just one discussion happening: is this the end of the world as we know it? Continue reading