AUSTIN, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--World First, a leading global international payments provider, announced today that it will host an expert panel discussion on the relationship America’s small businesses have with fintechs and banking institutions in a gameshow format. The session, titled “Frenemy Feud,” pits senior members of both the technology and financial services industries against each other to answer survey questions about the state of technological innovation in business.
World First will host SXSW’s first ever Frenemy Feud at 12:30 p.m. CT on Sunday, March 12, at the Austin Convention Center – Trade Show, Next Stage, Exhibit Hall 4.
Featured contestants are World First’s North America CEO Mike Ward, along with George Kurtyka, head of BBVA’s fintech business development, Howard Kuhn, director of treasury and trade services at Citi, and Sima Gandhi, head of business development and strategy at Plaid, a technology platform that enables applications to connect with users' bank accounts.
“The working relationship between financial technology providers and traditional financial institutions has never been stronger and more dynamic, which is critical, because that bond has never been more important than it is today,” says Ward. “As much as we compete in the marketplace, we also have to act as collaborators who work tirelessly to innovate, putting the client first and making sure they get what they need. We expect to have a lot of fun talking about the business in front of a live studio audience at SXSW.”
The gameshow questions are based on a survey of 500 U.S. small-to-medium size businesses (SMEs). The results showed that just 39% of respondents say safety and security is the most important feature when choosing a payments provider. Meanwhile, 28% of respondents said low fees are most important.
The World First survey results also showed that nearly half (49%) of business owners didn’t have an opinion on how they’d best describe the meaning of “fintech” as it relates to their operations.
Said Ward: “Our job as financial and technology service providers is as much about education as it is about developing solutions that improve both business performance and the user experience. Together, we can stay ahead of the curve so that all of America’s business owners, no matter the size of their operation, can safely and smartly leverage the benefits of technology to thrive in a challenging marketplace.”
Other Key Findings:
- 33% of respondents say they are eager about working with fintechs; 20% said they’re not eager
- 37% of respondents say social media when asked what they would give up forever in order to guarantee protection of your financial information; 31% say Netflix, while 28% say wine
- 46% of respondents say banks need better customer service, while 36% banks need to increase the speed of transactions
About World First
World First is market-leading, award-winning, rapidly-growing international FinTech business. Expert in international currencies and money transfer, World First combines specialist knowledge of foreign exchange markets with technological innovation to help individuals and businesses manage cross border currency payments quickly, securely and transparently. A specialist alternative to traditional banks’ generalist approach, World First has successfully exchanged more than $67 billion for more than 100,000 individuals and businesses since 2004. World First’s corporate and e-commerce desks enable SMEs and online marketplace traders to expand internationally via a specialist and personalised service proposition and bespoke technology.
World First employs over 600 people across six international offices of London, Amsterdam, Sydney, Austin, Singapore and Hong Kong with plans for further expansion into new countries. World First has strategic partnerships with more than 600 businesses and has licenses to service clients in more than 35 countries.