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How digital payments will unlock massive latent demand in consumer banking

Author: Peter Kinahan

Publishing date: April 2017

Why did Australian banks lock horns with Apple Pay? How did Danske Bank gain the support of Danish banks with MobilePay? And why did Norway's DNB score big with Vipps?

Because of the power of payments.

This isn't about having the best app or the best website. Quite simply, these banks are trying to engage more deeply with their customers. And, as it turns out, payments offers the perfect platform for hugely increased customer engagement — and that's true whether we're talking about Kenya or Kazakhstan or about banks or fintechs.

Much of the disruption to the payments industry can be traced back to the Global Financial Crisis of 2007-2008. With banks reeling, new tech businesses stepped into the fray with smart new technological offerings for payments, from sharing payments (Venmo) and P2P payments (PayPal) to cross-border payments (Currency Cloud) and mobile contactless payments (Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Android Pay).

It was in 2007 that Apple launched the world-conquering smartphone that inspired first Samsung and latterly new competitors such as Huawei and Xiaomi — leaving former mobile giants such as Blackberry and Nokia in the dust. Fast-forward ten years and the mobile phone has become the battlefield for payments as apps jostle for attention on the few square centimetres of space on our smartphones.

Banks might be slow to move but they've been catching up, and fast. For payments is the area of banking that consumers find most resonant through its day-to-day relevance in their lives.

There's no question that regulatory and technological developments have reduced the fees for payments — but customer data has started to replace or at least complement fees as the most valuable component of payments.

Payments Power
assesses the opportunity for banks and analyses through case studies those businesses that led the vanguard to realising this. Payments Power is the practical guide for understanding the applications that can capitalise on digital channels.

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