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Digitization has become one of the key sources of disruption occurring in the market today. Rather than becoming victims of it, banks and insurers have an opportunity to stay competitive by leading the disruption in today’s financial markets before non-traditional players take any more market share away from them.

This topic was discussed during a lively panel session at SAPPHIRE NOW this week. The panel featured Dan Latimore, SVP of Banking at Celent, Bob Cummings, SAP’s head of Insurance and Kari Escobedo, former IT leader from Starbucks and T-Mobile.

Key discussion points included:

Death by 1,000 cuts: Technology firms, telco companies and retailers are attacking slices of the market, gradually taking market share away from banks and insurers.

–  No legacy of legacy: These non-traditional competitors have the advantage of facing less regulation and less legacy, freeing them up to take risks and try new models more nimbly than financial institutions.

–  Brand is the King and the Customer is the Queen: Most of these non-traditional players have higher brand loyalty than financial services brands, and are taking a customer-centric view to developing value adding services.

It’s clear that the disruption war is far from over, and financial institutions have an opportunity to join the innovation movement to protect their market share and tap into new sources of growth. The winners of this war, however, will be those that think in terms of holistic customer needs and experiences to deliver relevant and desirable offerings to their customer.

What sort of innovations can you envision the financial industry delivering by virtue of exploring new services and business models from a customer-centric point-of-view?

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