Luxembourg is an important hub and has strategic importance for the global FinTech ecosystem. We made and interview with the Alex Panican, Head of Partnerships and Ecosystem @ The Luxembourg House of Financial Technology – LHOFT
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Would you briefly inform us about yourself, your company and your products / services?
The LHoFT is a Public-Private partnership. In short, we offer a soft-landing platform for startups who wish to launch their activity on the European Market from Luxembourg. We connect them with the regulator, with investors and with commercial partners. Beyond our role of facilitator, we play the role of catalyst in the Fintech ecosystem, promoting startups, ideas, technologies, but also educating on the matter.
How do you evaluate the ecosystem and opportunities in Europe?
We are not a Fintech Company, we are a foundation that helps fintech companies. The Fintech ecosystem in Europe is becoming huge, we see it everyday in Luxembourg, Berlin, Amsterdam or Paris.
In Luxembourg, Fintech ecosystem is growing fast. After the Brexit, the Luxembourg will become the first financial center in Europe. It’s already the second Fund industry in the World and main banking place with more the 170 banks.
What do you think about Brexit and its effects on FinTech’s?
It doesn’t have a massive impact on Fintech startups, the World of Finance and Technology will still thrive after the Brexit (personal opinion). However, it will force British Fintech startups to rethink their Head Quarter location, even more if they wish to target the European market.
What do you think about the financial and FinTech outlook of Turkey?
I must confess, I don’t know much about the Fintech outlook of Turkey, but we think it would be a great opportunity for our both hubs to collaborate in order for improve our respective ecosystems.
Turkey has always been (and will always be) the bridge between East/West cultures, economies and ideas. Success stories like Tarfin is the perfect example that Turkey has a key role to play in the Fintech world, and Luxembourg is part of this World.
With the rising trend of FinTech in general, what are the challenges, threats and opportunities for banks, financial institutions and FinTech companies in the upcoming years? How do you evaluate those topics?
Threats: banks and financial institutions are not innovating fast.
Challenges: enhancing their competencies in technology and innovations. Financial institutions are at the bottom for innovation capabilities and EQ for customers.
Opportunities for banks : new revenue streams and cost savings by leveraging technologies.
What are your recommendations for FinTech companies and start-ups?
We are very pragmatic, our recommendation would be “just do it”, to build something fast and very important: collaborate. Too many times, startups (fintech or not) spend too much time just thinking and are focus centered. Collaboration.