Sharing a few bank-inspired observations from Asheville, North Carolina on a glorious Saturday evening.
Push, Push… Push, Push
Last October, I journeyed to Austin, Texas, to watch my first Formula One race. Like many, Netflix’s wildly popular Formula 1: Drive to Survive drew me in. That series dramatically increased the popularity of the sport in the United States, with plenty of drama on track — and off.
Inevitably, the show takes viewers inside a showdown between two cars jostling for points, separated by mere milliseconds.
While being out front has its advantages, so too does drafting your competition. Personally, I love watching/hearing a team’s crew nonchalantly imploring its driver to “push, push… push, push” over the radio. This call to click the push-to-pass mechanism on a race car —which provides a temporary jolt of speed — typically results in the hunter becoming the hunted.
So yes, speed, competition and risk-taking is on my mind as we prepare to host Bank Director’s Experience FinXTech event May 5 and 6 in the same city as the Circuit of The Americas (aka COTA).
Much like Formula One brings some of the most ambitious and creative teams together for a race, Experience FinXTech attracts some of the most inspiring minds from the deeply competitive financial services space.
Now in its seventh year, the event connects a hugely influential audience of U.S. bank leaders with technology partners at the forefront of growth and innovation. Today, as banks continue to transition towards virtual or digital strategies, fintechs become partners rather than just competitors in the race to succeed.
We’ll look not only at fintechs offering efficiencies for banks, but at fintechs offering growth and improved performance as well. As fintech guru Chris Skinner recently noted, “If you only look at technology as a cost reduction process, you never get the market opportunities. If you look at technology as a market opportunity, you get the cost savings naturally as a by-product.”
We’ll consider investor appetites, debate the pros and cons of decentralized finance and share experiences in peer exchanges.
Throughout, we’ll help participants gauge technology companies at a time when new competitors continue to target financial services.
Most Formula One races are won on the margins, with dedicated teams working tirelessly to improve performance. So too are the banks that excel — many of them with dedicated teams working with exceptional partners.
*I am delighted to return to Texas and see so many of my former friends and colleagues at Bank Director. Heck, I’ll tease Naomi Snyder (the editor-in-chief), that I found a way to use my original title for this piece I authored for BankDirector.com.
In addition, I’ll be on stage, rep’ing the team as a member of the company’s board of directors (and as a minority owner), perhaps in boots, maybe without a tie… Saying hello to so many friends from across the industry — like the team at Nymbus who graciously hosted me and some incredibly awesome folks in our industry last October at F1’s COTA race… and yes, flying the skull & crossbones for the team at Cornerstone Advisors.
This is an awesome annual event, and one worth following on social media if you’re unable to join in person. Check out @Fin_X_Tech on Twitter to keep tabs on the provocative conversations that inevitable take place.
Look At Who Is Attending Acquire or Be Acquired
In just 20 days, we raise the lights on our 23rd annual Acquire or Be Acquired Conference. This is Bank Director’s biggest event of the year, one primarily focused on banking’s “great game” — mergers and acquisitions. My team has spent considerable time and energy developing a spectacular event focused on growth-related topics that range from exploring a merger to preparing for an acquisition; growing loans to capturing efficiencies; managing capital to partnering with fintech companies. To see the full agenda, click here.
Widely regarded as one of the banking industry’s premier events, we have more than 1,000 people registered to attend AOBA later this month — an all-time high. We couldn’t do this alone, and over the course of these 2 ½ days, executives from many of our industry’s leading professional services firms and product companies share their perspectives on “what’s now” and “what’s next.” I invite you to take a look at all of the corporate sponsors joining us:
As I shared in a recent post, bank executives and their boards face some major issues without clear answers. Before heading out west, I’ll share more about the banks (and 660+ bankers) joining us at the JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa. Until then, I invite you to learn more about the companies supporting this conference by hopping over to bankdirector.com. To follow the conversations happening around this conference on Twitter, I’m @aldominick and we are using #AOBA17.