The Fintech revolution has just begun. Financial technology –Fintech– has transformed financial services by offering new products, business processes and business models. Fintech includes a wide variety of financial activities: transferring money across borders, depositing checks with smartphones, bypassing physical banks to apply for credit and managing investments independently.
In this interview, Raushan Kretzschmar dives into the Fintech Revolution and its impact on business. Raushan is the Programme Director of the Master in Fintech and Business Analytics EADA-ISDI, an international programme combining leadership and technology. The master’s is designed for young professionals looking to acquire the skills and competencies to succeed professionally in the constantly evolving industry of Fintech.
Who was the Master in Fintech & Business Analytics designed for?
This master’s programme is a clear ‘first choice’ for those with basic skills in tech, statistics or economics who realise that technology is changing absolutely everything in business, and who want to lead this change.
The Tech part of the master prepares participants for the financial industry of tomorrow, while the business-analytical part provides the data and business skills to succeed in a reformatted world of work. At the end of the programme, participants are prepared to apply their analytical and data skills to launch or transform their career –or build their own business– in the exciting ‘crossover’ world of finance and technology.
What kinds of skills do participants develop in the programme?
Participants acquire hard skills in Fintech, Finance and Business Analytics. However, what we do not do in this master is deep tech, such as app development coding, programming or creation. Rather, we focus on app-generated Fintech data. Participants take the data gathered by this programme, and understand and analyse it to drive business value in Fintech and data rich companies. This means that our students develop the skillset needed to understand data and use it to create financial value with technological tools. At the same time, participants develop their soft skills in our Residential Training Campus, where they take part in EADA’s one-of-a-kind Leadership Development Programme.
How is EADA’s Master in Fintech and Business Analytics structured?
The programme is structured in three parts: the building of a base, specialisation and application. First, we provide participants with a solid academic base for Finance, Tech and Analytics. In the second term, they start to specialise in Fintech and Business Analytics. Finally, they apply their knowledge to specialised subjects. The classes are taught by our expert professors, who are academically qualified in addition to being leaders in implementing Fintech and Business Analytics strategies in their own companies at the executive level.
What can you tell us about the Fintech sector?
The fintech sector is made up of both startups and mature companies. While startups focus specifically on one type of Fintech services, mature companies have Fintech divisions that incorporate related strategies and technologies into their existing operations.
Fintech has been very disruptive in the financial industry and has affected not only banking, but also asset management, insurance and regulatory processes. Fintech can be perceived as an opportunity and a threat, so having the right talent to lead this disruptive field in banking –and other sectors– is key to succeeding in the financial industry of tomorrow. The main benefits that Fintech offers companies include cost reduction, improved speed and accuracy, and the freeing up of professionals to focus on Business Analytics and business decisions.
Why does the number of Fintech companies continue to grow?
Fintech is embedded in the process of becoming a normal part of any company’s financial processes. Soon it will be as commonplace as any other profession, just like traditional finance.
Spain is the country with the highest number of fintechs per inhabitant. According to Nasdaq, there are two reasons for this: the digitalisation of financial companies and the regulatory sandbox environment created by the Spanish government.
What will be the ‘next big thing’ in the Fintech market?
Customer data targeting and payments systems were the first areas in which Fintech emerged as a leader of change. The next wave will be currencies and process automation through predictive AI & ML. If we can all agree that the Fintech Revolution is just starting, then the limit for imaginative applications seems endless.
What makes now the ideal moment to specialise in Fintech and become a leader in this emerging sector?
According to research conducted at McKinsey, during the COVId-19 pandemic, companies digitalised 20-25 times faster than they would have under normal circumstances. In this context, innovation and leadership are the key for companies’ success. However, at the heart of this success always lies sustainability: finance entwined with technology is the future of long-term value creation for companies. The demand from companies for qualified professionals is much higher than supply right now, which makes this the ideal time to become a Fintech leader.
Where do you see Fintech in five years?
I think that the Fintech sector will become the ‘new normal’ within the next five years. Fintech engineers will be able to obtain the decision data first, even before traditional financiers. In fact, with the current speed of technological advances, this new normal might even happen faster than we think.