“In Europe, it is becoming more and more common for banks to acquire startups and Italy is lagging behind. It is a cultural issue. It is not because of the regulations or the bureaucracy, it is the mentality that must change”. According to Nicolo Petrone, Head of Partnership in Europe at Medici, “the Fintech District has a key role in this process, by highlighting the value of the cooperation between banks and startups in the fintech sector”.
Medici is the world’s number one platform for open innovation in financial services, it currently has about 11K startups Fintech and InsurTech profiled in over 180 countries. The top50 Banks in the world are members of its ecosystem and at the same time this platform is following other 600 Banks, accelerators and investors.
Thanks to its Listening Engine that identifies connections and relationships among startups, investors, accelerators and banks, Medici is able to identify extremely quickly the main interactions, in order to forecast the Fintech emerging trends. “This give us an important symmetry of information about what is happening in the Fintech and InsurTech sector all over the world” explains Petrone, adding that “for Banks we developed an enterprise membership to manage the whole innovation process for both strategic acquisitions and partnerships with startups”.
The development of strategic acquisitions and partnerships between banks and startups is the key, according to Petrone, and for Italy, a sore point because our country is lagging behind in a context like the European one that is already peculiar compared to others. “The US and Indian markets are compact markets but the European one is not – Petrone said – It is often necessary to operate by finding a partner in each region and this still requires more time for the development of the business”.
This is what he noticed working in a reality that started in 2013 from the US, then opened in India and Singapore and, later in Europe “We have also opened in Spain and UK but first of all in Italy in order to have a bridge for our operations”.
Often referred to as a virtual marketplace, Medici found in the Fintech District “a physical marketplace, able to give form to the Italian Fintech ecosystem essentially based in Milan. This is an extremely important place to create physical connections with other startups, in order to know what problems they are facing in the area but also to get close to the bank innovation leaders”.