This week in fintech

By Hauken from Stacc

PSD2 rescue from EU?



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This week in fintech

March 1 · Issue #49 · View online

A weekly summary of the latest news in our world of finance, design, and technology.

Also: 💰 How do Fintechs earn money? 📱 Big Tech threatening banks 💳 Visa working on payment tokens? 🪄 NFTs and a Thousand True Fans 🎽 What is the cost of clothes?

🦾 PSD2 rescue from EU?
We’ve previously covered the PSD2-discussion in Norway quite extensively. To sum it up, a few companies, like Horde and Ztl, have complained about banks in Norway not being compatible with the PSD2 regulations. Therefore, they have reported them to both the Financial supervisory authority of Norway and the Norwegian Competition Authority, without much happening so far. Now they suddenly are getting help from the European Banking Authority, EBA. In a recent statement, they give the banks a deadline of 30 April to put in place the necessary features - or else fines are coming their way.
💰 How do Fintechs earn money?
Have you ever asked yourself how fintechs like Revolut actually make money? Unit, a Banking as a Service platform, has created a nice overview of this, complete with a spreadsheet template for tech companies.
Speaking of Fintechs: the advisor Jason Mikula has written about if Fintechs really are here to fix users finances (as they often claim). His take? Fintech has challenged many of the practices in consumer finance, especially around fee-based revenue models. But fintech business models doesn’t always perfectly align incentives between company and consumers. There is no such thing as a free lunch (unless VCs are footing the bill), and at times fintechs are just a wolf dressed in sheep’s clothes.t
Speaking of Fintechs: Jason Mikula has written about whether Fintechs really are here to fix users finances (as they often claim). His take? Fintech have challenged many practices in consumer finance, especially around fee-based revenue models. But fintechs don’t necessarily align incentives between company and consumers. There is no such thing as a free lunch (unless VCs are footing the bill), and at times fintechs are just wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing.
📱 Big Tech threatening banks
Last week Google rolled out payment for parking and public transport directly from Google Maps. These features show that regular banks have something to fear from the network effect and Big Techs’ position in our daily lives. Three researchers from NHH Norwegian School of economics have written that traditional banks could become the next industry threatened by new players and changed rules of the game if they don’t manage to renew themselves. They pinpoint that customers are more satisfied and experience Google, Amazon, and Apple as significantly more innovative than the Norwegian banks. The conclusion is that Norwegian banks are threatened by two types of IT companies - fast fintech companies and Big Tech. “When everyone has quality, increased innovation is the best way to meet increased competition for customers.”
Paying for parking and public transport in google maps
Paying for parking and public transport in google maps
💳 Visa working on payment tokens?
Someone working a lot with innovation is Visa, which regularly files patents, as we’ve written about before. Newly they have filed a patent for embedding payment tokens in digital media. In this patent, they are trying to solve copyrighted photographs being sold or shared without the owner receiving payment.
Visa’s solution involves embedding payment tokens into each photograph’s metadata, along with an optional price. If a photo agency wants to purchase a photograph, they can drag the photo onto an application, extract all of the token data from it, and then make a payment. This makes it easier to buy rights for digital media. This process is simplified by all of the details being embedded as a token into the photograph.
If we combine this with Non Fungible Tokens (NFTs) that we wrote a lot about in the last newsletter, things start to get really interesting. Ideas like browsers automatically distributing ad revenue to the creators or owners of the tokenized image could suddenly be a reality. Or the possibility to bid on an image to become a new owner of that image and therefore receive any future revenues in an automated way.
🪄 NFTs and a Thousand True Fans
I won’t bore you with any more crazy NFT news this week. But there has happened a lot in this space over the last month. Luckily this also means a few good reflections around the space and opportunities. Chris Dixon from Andreesen Horowitz has written about what NFT means for creators.:
The thousand true fans thesis builds on the original ideals of the internet: users and creators globally connected, unconstrained by intermediaries, sharing ideas and economic upside. Incumbent social media platforms sidetracked this vision by locking creators into a bundle of distribution and monetization. There are, correspondingly, two ways to challenge them: take the users, or take the money. Crypto and NFTs give us a new way to take the money. Let’s make it happen.
Another interesting reflection about the NFT-economy is from Packy McCormick that writes about the rise of the solo corporation:
The Creator Economy and NFTs are massive human potential unlocks. Even if certain assets are in a short-term bubble, we are on an inexorable march towards individuals mattering more than institutions. [..] Within two decades, we will have multiple trillion-plus dollar publicly traded entities with just one full-time employee, the founder. That sounds bold, but it’s kind of already happened: as of last week, Bitcoin, which has no employees, crossed the $1 trillion mark.
🎽 What is the cost of clothes?
We often come over something too good not to share, even though it’s not directly connected to fintech. This week we read this deep dive into Olof Hoverfält closet. He has kept a continuous daily log of the use of all his clothes for the past three years, uncovering the true cost of his clothes.
🙏 Don’t keep it a secret!
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Marius Hauken, partner Stacc X
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