FinTech North News and Regional FinTech Developments

Re-Cap: FinTech North Hull Forum 11th February

FinTech North headed to Hull for the first time in our existence last Friday. We launched our Hull Forum, in partnership with Barclays Eagle Labs, which saw around over 20 delegates from across the UK make their way east to C4DI’s Media Suite in Hull.

We would like to say a big thank-you to our speakers and attendees who made the event a good one. Of course, we thank Barclays Eagle Labs and Amy Morgan, Ecosystem Manager at Barclays Eagle Labs for covering logistics on the day and C4DI for providing the venue.

For the benefit of our community, FinTech North have produced a write-up of the event, alongside a recording of the full conference which is accessible below.

We kicked off proceedings with a quick introduction from Joe Roche, Engagement Manager at FinTech North – who talked delegates through the work that FinTech North do before passing on to Amy Morgan, Ecosystem Manager at Barclays Eagle Labs who outlined the work of Eagle Labs and discussed opportunities at Eagle Labs for potential entrepreneurs and businesses looking for a place to grow.

Julian Wells, Director of Whitecap Consulting & FinTech North, gave a market overview and FinTech Sector update, explaining how the interest in regional FinTech has been growing exponentially in recent years. Julian mentioned the Kalifa Review and how national connectivity is set to continue to be a major theme as the recommendations of the Review are addressed. Julian also explained how FinTech North links with the wider FinTech community via our involvement in the FinTech National Network, a group which includes Innovate Finance, FinTech Scotland, FDinTech Wales, FinTech NI, FinTech West, and SuperTech WM (West Midlands).

Bob Spence, International Director from C4DI went on to introduce the Media Suite and to discuss and share the technology they develop called 5Next technologies – 2 products – 1 is LawTech called RainMaker Pro, a business development programme for Lawyers and the other is called Prospector Pro which is a business development tool for Bankers.

Despite the lack of profile in the City, Bob shared with us that their first client for RainMaker Pro was the 3rd largest legal firm in Germany and they’ve also just signed commercials with the 7th largest insurance distributer in Eastern Europe for Prospector Pro. Bob claimed that being based in the North has been a major advantage.

Bob announced that C4DI have recently partnered with an outstanding Pakistan based FinTech product called One Call. “They are achieving great results as a distribution platform and it’s a great product to introduce to the Northern FinTech ecosystem.” Bob claims that the expectation is to attract Series A funding this year and develop the technology based in Kingston upon Hull.

“They are members of our incubator and we expect to attract other Pakistan based technology businesses into the North of England through this success.”

Phil Benson, Co-Founder of UK BlackTech was up next to discuss Innovation and Diversity. He went on to discuss the link between UK BlackTech, innovation & diversity and FinTech North.

UK Black Tech is an innovation group with the mission to solve the world’s biggest problems through representation, which will increase innovation and greater outcomes for transformation in this fast changing world. He stated that innovation in tech and diversity is about the people – and what ethnic minorities bring to an organisation cannot be overlooked.

Phil introduced the idea of thinking differently when approaching such issues.

“We need to make sure we’re thinking outside the box. Innovation? – We don’t have to do it this way, why don’t we think outside the box?

Harry Rix, Founder of Accountable joined us virtually to introduce his business. Harry found that 300 local authorities recognised climate emergencies

He introduced the Accountable Offsetting platform. Previously, carbon offsetting has had a questionable track record and issues with intangibility. Accountable strives to create tangible offsetting that is local and accredited. They work with local councils to identify carbon offsetting projects to achieve net zero objectives. It allows them to seamlessly fund and promote projects – plugging that gap between funding and going net zero.

Their mission is to make the complex world of sustainability simple. Harry then took questions and welcomed feedback.

Ciaran Savage, Founder of Card Industry Professionals (CIP) was up next. Ciaran began CIP to provide transparent solutions and build long-term relationships with merchants. CIP has since developed to include the latest range of payments hardware, e-commerce software and cutting-edge technologies to ensure that we can tailor a solution to any merchant that accepts payments in-store, online or over the phone.

He went to discuss how moving to London is not essential and because you’re in the North – it’s not a disadvantage. “Over the last couple of years, we’ve seen how businesses can be completely remote. It’s interesting to me to speak now with our partners and how they speak of the cost of their office in London. It’s not obtainable or sustainable.”

“You can get great graduates from across the North. Through development of CIP, we’ve retained that ethos of collaborating and getting graduates and young professionals from across the North.”

It was great to have Harry and Ciaran with us to discuss growing a FinTech on the East Coast.

The Hull Conference ended with a panel discussion and interactive audience Q&A. Including topics such as talent, diversity, sustainability and the wider FinTech sector in the UK. Following this, delegates took the opportunity for some final networking.

It was amazing to meet the FinTech North community and finally land an event in the East. A huge thanks to Barclays Eagle Labs and C4DI for their collaboration.

We’re looking forward now to our Leeds Conference, in partnership with TruNarrative, kicking off on the 17th March! For more information, check out the news story here.

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