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/   Insights

We're constantly being warned that fraud is one of the biggest threats facing the banking industry, but the true scale of this was revealed by a recent survey that suggests it could make up...

Cause and Effect: If you build it, will they come?

July 23, 2014
/   Spotlight

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Intuit 2020 Report: The Future of Financial Services

April 11, 2011
/   Insights

Today, Intuit released the latest edition of the Intuit 2020 report, Intuit 2020 Report: The Future of Financial Services, which identifies and examines four key trend areas that will  transform the financial services industry...

Fast Facts: Student Loans

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/   Insights

The Financial Services Roundtable recently released another iteration of its Fast Facts, reliable, bullet-point research about issues facing the financial services industry. Topics span TARP, Dodd-Frank, insurance, lending, retirement savings and more.  Below are some updated Fast...

The Top 10 Trends in the Digital Banking Industry

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/   Spotlight

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Making Banking Fun: Gamification in Financial Services

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/   Insights

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Technology M&As: The Beats Go On

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/   Insights

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What We’re Reading

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/   Spotlight

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Small Business: Perception vs. Reality

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/   Insights

In the most recent election cycle, like most others before it, the one sector of the economy that got the most attention was small business.  This is the future, we were told by every...

What We’re Reading: Thanksgiving Edition

November 22, 2012
/   Spotlight

Below are interesting stories the staff has been reading over the past week. What have you been reading? Let us know in the comments section below or Tweet @bankingdotcom. Mobile Thursday? Plans for Thanksgiving...

Banks and card providers have been devoting a lot of attention recently to Asian markets, and it’s not hard to see why. With more than 1.3 billion potential customers in China alone, and a similar number in India, the opportunities for banks are immense.

At the moment, some parts of this region are still heavily cash dependent, with research from McKinsey and Capgemini suggesting just two per cent of transactions in emerging nations of Asia-Pacific were cashless last year – though this rises to 35 per cent in developed countries.

But could this be set to change sooner rather than later? Recent figures have highlighted how efforts are being made to boost banking infrastructure in this part of the world and deliver the right technologies to consumers to help them embrace digital.

India set for a digital boom

One market that’s particularly poised for growth is India. According to new research by Google and Boston Consulting Group, the value of digital transactions in the world’s second-biggest nation is expected to reach $500 billion by 2020 – ten times the level seen today.

It highlighted several reasons for this, such as the growing penetration of smartphones in the country. By 2020, some 520 million people – more than a third of the population – will own such a device. Greater access to the internet and acceptance of digital options by merchants will also have a key role to play.

By 2020, digital payments will account for 15 per cent of the country’s GDP, it was forecast, with more than half of the nation’s internet users making such a payment – and more than ten million merchants accepting them.

Cutting down on the unbanked

The key driver behind this is efforts by both government and industry to boost financial inclusion in India. The government has made the move away from cash a key pillar of its finance strategy, relaxing regulations for such services and joining the UN-based Better than Cash Alliance.

Card providers have also been promoting the use of new solutions. In June, for example, Visa announced it has surpassed the milestone of distributing one million contactless-enabled cards in the country, with this technology now making up five per cent of cards in circulation, and 100,000 merchants accepting them.

All these factors have combined to help ensure that 53 per cent of Indian consumers now have a bank account, up from just 35 per cent in 2011.

Mobile bridging the gap

While many people in India still do not have bank accounts, they do have mobile phones, so companies such as Visa are looking to use this as a way to boost financial inclusion.

Business Insider noted Visa hopes its efforts in contactless will be a launching point for smartphones, wearables, and sticker payments, all of which could help it boost financial inclusion by targeting individuals who own mobile phones, but are still unbanked.

Alpesh Shah, senior partner & managing director, BCG, India, also observed: “The smartphone explosion will usher in a new era in digital payments in India over the next few years that will see non-cash transactions exceed cash ones by 2023.”

Andy Brown, Marketing Director Payments at NCR Corporation, has nearly 30 years’ experience in e-payment systems both from the delivery and support of systems in the Far East and Europe and in the product management and marketing perspectives. Based in the UK, Andy is responsible for the marketing for NCR’s payments solutions.

Image credit: iStockphoto/subodhsathe


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James W. Gabberty

Gabberty is a professor of information systems at Pace University in New York City. An alumnus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and New York University Polytechnic Institute, he has served as an expert witness in telecommunication and information security at the federal and state levels and holds numerous certifications from SANS & ISACA.

Zachary Ehrlich

25-year-old writer, and as a native San Franciscan, I am unreasonably loyal to Bank of America, if only for their superhero-like origin story, involving the 1906 earthquake and Italian fruit vendors.

Brad Strothkamp

Marisa Mann

Marisa Mann brings over 15 years of experience in consulting and financial services industries to the Solstice team, working on large scale enterprise initiatives across many technologies, including specializing in the digital space – Internet and mobile. Mann is passionate about mobile and the endless possibilities for the enterprise, delivering business value through strong brand recognition and driving to excellence in the consumer experience. Prior to Solstice, Mann worked at JP Morgan Chase, Diamond Management and Technology Consultants, Washington Mutual, Inc, and Accenture.