3 down, 1 to go
With just (just?!) Sibos to go, I’ve now done three different conferences (Commercial Cards & Payments, BAI & AFP) and three very different cities (London, Washington & Miami Beach) in the last 3 weeks. But some similar themes that seem to have run across all three events. These are, in no particular order:
Whether Big, customer centric or lack of, data was part of every conversation. Only the Commercial Card people thought they had it both sorted and a USP (until one panellist told them they hadn’t – me!), whilst the customers felt they had a distinct lack of data. My take-away and advice to the client has been data without purpose or context is just that – data. Understanding how the data is or could be used and improving that process is going to be where people can make a difference.
Not only is there growing concern that the deadline will be impossible to meet (one can only assume that a fair proportion of the people who asked what were the penalties for failing to meet the deadline are unlikely to meet the deadline!), there is a growing belief that the rules could touch on some commercial transactions, and that the rules may be extended to cover commercial transactions under a certain value.
Changing competitive boundaries
Whether its vendors creating new payment networks, vendors merging or acquiring or existing networks being perceived to be muscling in on the business of its ecosystem partners, there is plenty of potential game changing action going on. I’d predicted some of this a few years ago – I keep my crystal ball ready for these special occasions – but even I hadn’t figured so much change, in such a short period of time.
As a European, I managed to resist the urge to say “welcome to our world”. But even the US domestic people I spoke believe they’ve entered a new era. Opinions varied far and wide, but all agreed on two words – “more, soon”.
Sibos is next week and some, if not all, of these themes are already occurring in my pre-briefings.
What was interesting about these last 3 events, and so far holds true about Sibos, is that there have been no big announcements of note, and far fewer announcements overall. Some small, interesting ones, but considering the changes mentioned above, no major ones yet. Watch this space – after Sibos in Vienna in 2008, and what unfolded during that week, we certainly know anything is possible!