A Pop Quiz on the Future of Banking

I was not planning on a sixth consecutive column focused on non-bank competition; however, as I prepare to present at Moss Adams’ 14th Annual Community Banking conference in Huntington Beach, California on August 26, a “bonus” post on this topic.  As you will see, today’s piece builds on the premise that many community bank leaders have real opportunities to expand what banking means to individual and business customers by offering services that go beyond a traditional business model. So to wrap up this week, sharpen your pencils for this pop quiz.

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Are WE the generation that has learned how to live without a bank?
So much has been written about millenials learning to live without a bank… but ask yourself: have you learned how to live without your bank?  If you could not direct deposit your paycheck, do you have ready alternatives?  I thought so.  Financing for your house? Your business?  I am simply pointing out the inconvenient truth that it is not just the wet-behind-the-ears customers that might already know how to live without a bank.  That said, just because many have learned to live “without” a traditional banking relationship doesn’t mean most want to.  I will let a thought from Diebold support this thought, but before I do, have to ask:

Who’s getting that Kabbage?

As a platform for online merchants to borrow working capital, Kabbage fills a small business lending gap that I have to imagine many community banks should desire (h/t Mitchell Orlowsky @ Ignite Sales).  As I learned this week, Kabbage works with small businesses that are unable to obtain credit from traditional sources. According to TechCrunch, “the startup has closed a $270 million credit facility from Guggenheim Securities, the investment banking and capital markets division of Guggenheim Partners. Atlanta, Georgia-based Kabbage will use the funds to build out its financing business both in the U.S. and beyond. This is one of the largest credit facilities ever issued to a small business lender, and possibly the biggest in the online lending space.” Since opening for business almost three years ago, Kabbage has advanced more than $250 million to small businesses, the company says   Just another example of competition facing many business-oriented banks today.

If Diebold can change, why can’t you?
From the outside looking in, one can make the case that the last truly disruptive technology for banks was the ATM. And when you think ATMs, Diebold has to be top-of-mind.  So when the technology company acknowledges the following, why can’t more banks course correct and be where people are going (and not where they might appear to be)?

The retail financial services industry is in the midst of an epic change and will soon look very different than it did just a few years ago. Consumers are changing what they want out of their banks. Our research proves that consumers want additional convenience to access their bank anytime, anywhere, anyhow, all while maintaining a personal connection with their bank.

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Regardless of how you did on this pop quiz, please feel free to leave a comment below by clicking on the white plus sign (within the grey circle at the bottom of this page).  I invite you to follow me on Twitter (@aldominick) where you can publicly or privately share your thoughts with me.

Aloha Friday!

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