Welcome to Axis All Areas, our monthly Wrap-up.

Keeping you informed about the hot topics, key trends, and emerging challenges facing the Financial Services Industry with a combination of industry and Axis-led insights, events and podcast. Showcasing exciting and disruptive innovation in other sectors to offer valuable takeaways and consider the potential for these to transform Financial Services.

60 Second Focus – Budget 2020 

  • The Bank of England took the fight to the coronavirus outbreak with the biggest interest rate cut for more than a decade and measures to boost business lending by almost £300bn. The Bank also unveiled details of a new funding scheme targeted at banks offering cheap credit lines to those boosting lending to small businesses, which could boost credit by £100bn.

  • The government has set out plans to impose a digital services tax on the UK revenues of online companies including Google and Facebook.  The 2% levy on the British revenues of search engines, social media services and online marketplaces, first announced in the 2018 budget, is an attempt to keep some of the economic value created by technology companies in the country, ahead of planned international action by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).   Spotify and Monzo are excluded because they do not operate “search engines, social media services and online marketplaces.”  As referenced in the Guardian. 
  • A £100m levy on companies to combat money laundering has been backed by campaigners concerned Britain is falling behind in the fight against illicit financing. Chancellor Rishi Sunak confirmed plans in the Budget to supplement public sector funding with a charge paid by all groups that are subject to UK Money Laundering Regulations, which include banks, accountants, estate agents and solicitors.

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Industry News

The Drum – An ad of one’s own: how brands are acknowledging International Women’s Day helping to forge a gender-equal world, celebrate women’s achievements, raise awareness against bias and take action for equality. Our vote – Catalyst is celebrating International Women’s Day (IWD) 2020 with a reboot of its successful ‘#BiasCorrect’ campaign to interrupt unconscious bias by highlighting the power of words used to describe women in the workplace.

Fintech Times – Metro Bank has announced a partnership with ezbob to provide a same-day SME lending service. Metro Bank was a winner of the Capability & Innovation Fund, winning £120m to provide next-generation banking services to UK SMEs. While they have since returned £50m after rowing back on regional plans, this partnership represents a continued commitment to the aims of the programme.

Alt Fi – Starling Bank has signed on as the official banking partner of Team GB ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

Finextra – The FCA has issued a formal Call for Input to better understand how the market for data and analytics is functioning, following concerns of anti-competitive practices. The scope of the review will include both regulated and unregulated firms and seeks to determine whether services are being competitively sold and priced.

The Guardian – the UK aims to raise £500m a year through digital services tax – Britain is pressing ahead with plans for a new digital services tax focused on large US technology companies, despite complaints by UK-based groups that they risk being caught by the measure and fears of US retaliation. 

FT – Money laundering campaigners hail £100m ‘economic crime’ levy – Money will be used for law enforcement technology and hiring investigators. The Economic Crime Plan included measures to bring crypto-asset businesses under anti-money laundering rules and improving the sharing of information between agencies.

Don’t miss out….

Axis All Areas Podcast our host Thomas Hall talks to Incumbents, Challenger banks, FinTechs and Digital Platforms about the future of UK financial services and how they will help shape that future. The series includes AIB, Aldermore Bank and Chip in the last few weeks.   If you haven’t had the opportunity to listen, tune in every Wednesday.

British Banking Awards 2020 “Consultancy of the Year finalist” Thanks to everyone who voted for us in the British Banking Awards “Consultancy of the Year”. Congratulations to all the finalists and soon to be announced winners who are making a real change to the Financial Services industry.  

Open Banking are you ready for a tune up.  Take the test.

Chris Allen, Digital Director at Axis Corporate shares…

Company to watch:  We expect US open banking provider Plaid’s growth to be supercharged by Visa’s 5.3BN acquisition.  Once integrated into Visa’s fintech ecosystem  – new, expanded propositions and client logos are surely not far behind. Watch this space.

Book to read:  Shoe Dog by Nike founder Phil Knight. In addition to being the fascinating story of an Iconic brand, Shoe Dog is surprisingly useful as a guide for start-ups. A number of nostalgia-tinged playbooks on the importance of corporate culture, customer research and building a tight-knit team. Just do it.

App to use Snoop. Well worth signing up for the beta of your very own financial virtual assistant. In contrast to many aggregation tools, snoop provides tailored and specific improvement suggestions – helping you buy better through a combination of offers, voucher codes and other hacks.

Axis All Areas is Proudly Produced by Axis Corporate – The Challenger Consultancy. Find out more about what makes us unique, other thought leadership and job openings.

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