Steve Sammartino: The Coming Finance Disruption

Steve Sammartino The Coming Finance Disruption - MFAA National Convention 2015 - Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre - Melbourne - Victoria - Australia - 2015

“Humans have an operating system, and we haven’t had an upgrade in 200,000 years! The thing that changes is the technology, but human behavior stays the same.”

What will happen when people realise they no longer need banks? In his review of evolving technology and start-ups in the banking and finance sector, Steve Sammartino asked us just that.

Times they are a-changing (in fact they have been for awhile), and in this increasingly virtual world of transfers and payments, consumers are starting to realise that – in the same way they don’t need big media companies in order to consume content – they don’t need big banks in order to transact.

According to Sammartino, in order to understand the future, sometimes we need to look into the past.

“Humans have an operating system, and we haven’t had an upgrade in 200,000 years! The thing that changes is the technology, but human behavior stays the same.”

Today represents a unique opportunity for consumers to take the power back from banks. Why? Because we have NASA in our pocket! NASA, of course, being our smartphone.

There’s no computer in the world that’s more powerful! Perhaps more importantly, there’s no other form of technology that is so remarkably human. As Sammartino reminds us, the last thing you touch at night used to be your partner… now it’s your mobile.

“These phones can hear, they can speak, they’re touch sensitive, they’ve got a brain, they know who you are. It’s a human interaction!”

This kind of power and connection changes the possibilities. Now that consumers have automatic and immediate choice at their fingertips, the concept of service becomes more and more important.

It’s a simple equation: trust + technology = disruption

Today we trust each other more than we trust large organisations, because we know organisations have their own profit-related goals.

So what does this mean for banks and brokers?

Traditionally banks are the ones who – in layman’s terms – “keep track of who owes who what, and who to give money to.”

Of course, with the rise of the smart phone, this is something we can do ourselves.

In other words, trust + technology = GFD (the Great Finance Disruption)

Payments, loans and currency are going through rapid change, notably thanks to the rise of things like Apple Pay, Kickstarter and Bitcoin.

Sammartino encouraged his audience to get attention by doing interesting and innovative things with new technology. This doesn’t necessarily have to mean knowing how the technology works, but rather knowing just what the possibilities are in using that technology to secure more customers.

“It’s 1979 in the PC revolution, it’s 1995 in the dot-com boom and now it’s 2015 in the great financial disruption. It’s the biggest opportunity you’ve ever seen, so please don’t squander it!”

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