Stories of our impact

Viva la FinTech revolution

Discover the central role we are playing in driving Scotland’s FinTech strategy

It’s been a challenging decade for the financial services (FS) sector as technological advances, the regulatory landscape and customer expectations undergo significant change. But with a concentrated FS sector, a strong background in technology innovation and world-leading universities, Scotland seems to have the recipe for success. Edinburgh in particular is being recognised as an emerging hotspot for financial technology  (FinTech).

Over the past , we've been growing our local FinTech capabilities to engage with clients and markets in a new way, developing relationships with government agencies and staying close to young talent and emerging start-ups. See how we’re playing a central role in driving Scotland’s FinTech strategy, and what’s in store for the future.

From working with public agencies…

Last year, Scottish Enterprise, Scotland’s main economic development agency, asked us to explore how the country could become an international FinTech hub. The study allowed us to build relationships with FS firms, technology start-ups, universities, public sector agencies and investors, and it’s also been a great platform to start exploring opportunities with both existing and new clients.

Following this research, we became industry trade group Scottish Financial Enterprise’s partner to develop and embed a FinTech strategy for Scotland. After completing a detailed review of infrastructure and innovation, talent networks and funding structures available, we presented on the strategy’s progress to Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, during a Financial Services Advisory Board meeting in late 2016.

We have since been developing a detailed business plan for FinTech in Scotland which, amongst other things, will see the creation of a physical FinTech hub in Edinburgh to connect the community and accelerate innovation. We have also helped to define a new structure and operating model for FinTech Scotland, a new company that will be created to lead the development of this fast-growing industry.

… to inspiring the next generation

But Scotland can only fully emerge on the global stage if we can engage with local communities and educate the next generation of digital finance leaders. We have run several industry 'hackathons' in 2016, encouraging students and data scientists to bring out innovative thinking on how new technologies can disrupt traditional financial services. We also sponsored Scotland's largest blockchain summit in November alongside Royal Bank of Scotland, and we hosted the nation’s first datathon at data innovation festival DataFest17 in March.

As part of our universities programme, we are supporting student projects from Dundee University, and are working closely with Strathclyde and Edinburgh Universities on generating course content around FinTech and financial disruption. We’re also helping data science students at Stirling University with an analytics challenge that’s part of their studies.

Our work in the local market has allowed us to grow a practice directly connected to the latest thinking in FinTech and develop new services for our clients. We look forward to helping shape this facility with our industry partners and developing even closer collaborations with clients, start-ups, academia and investors.