Top 10 Financial Services and FinTech Stories of 2021

The way fintechs and challenger banks have dominated the tech headlines in recent years makes it all the more surprising that for the first time a UK digital challenger bank made a profit.

The nature of tech and fintech startups means that they invest heavily in technology and customer acquisition, with payoffs somewhere down the line.

But Starling Bank’s first monthly profit this year was a milestone for UK fintech, and others have reported profits since. Learn more about what it means to be profitable for Starling going forward.

Likewise, technology companies supporting the financial sector continue to receive support from investors. For example, take Thought Machine, a company that is disrupting the way banks do basic banking.

The company, run by former Google executives, is bringing the techniques used by the Internet giant to the banking world. It’s already become a fintech unicorn, with a valuation of over $ 1 billion. Learn more about this and other key stories from the year here.

Here are Computer Weekly’s 10 best financial services and fintech articles of 2021:

1. What future for the now profitable, app-based Starling Bank?

Starling Bank is the first of a new generation of UK digital banks to make a profit, so what’s next?

2. Regulators’ concerns about resilience and security could slow cloud adoption in financial services

The Association for Financial Markets In Europe report highlights the pressure financial services firms face as they seek to balance the need for innovation with regulatory requirements.

3. The acquisition of Aiia by Mastercard is a further sign of the great future of open banking

Mastercard’s acquisition of Denmark-based open banking fintech Aiia follows the takeover by its Swedish rival Tink.

4. Which one? Online banking survey reveals ‘worrying gaps’ in security

A consumer rights organization has ranked the security of online checking account providers in the UK.

5.Think machine: Google-inspired banking fintech with the unicorn and beyond

British fintech unicorn Thought Machine is transforming IT for traditional big banks while working with new, digital-only challengers.

6. Interview with the CIO: Nicola Wadham, Financial Ombudsman Service

IT Director Nicola Wadham updates Computer Weekly on the IT challenges and successes of the Financial Ombudsman Service.

7. Bank branches will be a thing of the past in five years, bankers say

Traditional bank branches are likely to disappear from Main Street over the next five years, but banking ecosystems will ensure high levels of customer service, bankers say.

8. Deutsche Bank to sell its retail banking IT unit to TCS for € 1

Deutsche Bank has agreed to sell its retail banking IT business to one of its major IT vendors for a token of € 1.

9. Has the Covid-19 made it easier to sell bank branch closures?

Big banks continue to close branches and invest more in technology as the Covid-19 pandemic advocates for digital banking.

10. Are banks overloaded with liability for money lost to online scams?

The bank’s boss calls for cross-sector cooperation to reduce scams that trick people into making instant payments online.

Stephen V. Lee