April 2019 Breakfast Briefing

Date: 01 Apr 2019

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The UK’s FinTech sector is undoubtedly driven by London. With its strong financial hub, access to investment and pool of technical talent, the Capital is undoubtedly the UK’s, if not Europe’s, FinTech leader.

But a revolution to drive up FinTech has been taking place across the UK’s regions and, at a recent MKBLP event, local business leaders gathered to hear how FinTech has helped shape the Northern Powerhouse, and how its success can be applied to Milton Keynes businesses.

During a presentation at MK College’s Brasserie, Julian Wells and Lal Tawney from Whitecap, an independent consultancy working with regional SME’s across the private, public and educational sectors, delivered a case study on its work within FinTech across the north to business leaders, and how the success of the model can be exploited by companies with the Milton Keynes region.

Based in Leeds, a city which is often referred to as a FinTech centre of excellence, Whitecap has been heavily involved in the FinTech sector, including the co-founding of a thriving events-based community under the FinTech North brand. Significantly, Mr Wells detailed the company’s work with Leeds City Council, who supported and invested within the city’s tech sector, laying the foundations for Leeds to become a FinTech hub of the future.

“The UK is seen as the FinTech capital of the world, with the north becoming recognised as a key UK FinTech hub and an increasingly important contributor to the national and international FinTech economy.” Explained Julian Wells.

Mr Wells likened the UK FinTech economy to a Formula 1 car, which will continue to drive forward quickly, and set the global agenda.

As the application of using technology to improve financial products and services, FinTech is rapidly transforming the way companies across all sectors does financial business, and companies within Milton Keynes need to take advantage of the technology.

Increasing its regional footprint, “we want to be everywhere but London,” Mr Wells commented, Whitecap opened a Milton Keynes based office in 2017, headed up by Lal, to cover the Midlands and South regions.

In his capacity as a new member of MKBLP, Lal stressed his dedication to shaping the future of Milton Keynes, and, in particular, assisting SME’s harness the power of FinTech to enable them to prosper in the future. “It is vital that Milton Keynes companies adopt FinTech as it will continue to impact our lives at a fast pace as recent technologies develop.”

MKBLP members acknowledged that, while Milton Keynes doesn’t have the sizeable banking community that Leeds boasts, there was a compelling case for local companies to take advantage of the technology to shape their businesses.