DataArt Hosts Inaugural London Financial Technology Event at the City of London Club

DataArt hosted its first London Financial Technology Event at the historical City of London Club, in the heart of London, around the topic: “How Consumer Technology Impacts Financial Services”.

The highly capable panel showcasing big industry players including Thomson Reuters and moderated by Chris Skinner, Chairman of the Financial Services Club who is also a regular speaker at BBC News, discussed how financial firms are currently dealing with the constantly increasing customer demand for intuitive and easy to use technology despite budget constraints and stricter regulation. The key points of discussion were the plethora of methods and devices used to execute a wide range of financial activities, the importance of intuitive design to ensure optimal user experience and expected industry future trends.

Bob Fuller, Director of Fixnetix listed as one of the London's top 20 Fin-Tech start-ups, kicked off the debate by addressing the importance of innovation and ease of use of any kind of technology. However, Esteban Souto, Global Head of UX Design & Engineering group of Thomson Reuters, stressed that innovation will not necessary come from a new technology but rather it will be the result of an unavoidable change in the business model of financial services firms. In fact, Mr Souto underlined the necessity of the entire financial services industry to be more creative and flexible and to understand the importance of the time to market factor. “Flexibility” was the most recurring word during the debate and its substance was further enhanced by Dmitry Bagrov, Managing Director of DataArt, who emphasised how technology providers need to listen carefully to the user’s requirements and develop applications that not only meet the consumers’ needs but that are also easy to integrate with additional future functionality if needed. Neil Hoad, Director of Optimus Wealth, supported this idea by while commenting on what Barclays Bank is currently doing to help make their customer experience as easy as possible.

The impact of social media on the industry was a hot topic, as well as the crucial issue of data security. In this regard, Howard Lask, Director of Coller Capital, highlighted that the issue of data security is becoming more and more an internal problem for financial firms rather than an external one. In other words, it is easier for employees to bring or transfer the information outside the company than for external people to get access to it.

The event brought together senior decision-makers, bankers, consultants as well as service and IT providers from the financial services industry, who had the chance to share ideas and insights about the current trends and future of the industry in an informal and relaxed environment. The highly active panel discussion, which seemed to have engaged the audience from beginning to end due to the panellists’ different opinions on the several points of discussion, was followed by a cocktail and networking session in the majestic Garden Room of the City of London Club.

The next DataArt’s London Financial Technology Event is scheduled for May 2014.