We know that start-up is a new business trend that focusing on using technology to innovate and create better solutions for the customers as I mentioned from the previous blog. Start-ups can be involved in various sectors including healthcare, education, finance and many more.
But most of the times we only hear about start-ups and investors or start-ups and financial institutions. How about start-ups and politic entities? This time, let’s take financial technology startups and politic entities in a perspective. The blog will focus on what politic entities could do to start supporting the financial technology trend and the start-ups for a better future economy.
A mission to explore financial technology opportunities
There are so many opportunities in financial technology and one of the opportunities is trade mission. By organising or joining a trade mission, there are possibilities to meet entities that you have never met before, which actually could give you a better future in your companies’ growth.
The United States is one of the hubs for financial technology and many entities would like to explore opportunities there and strengthen the relationship that has been built before. The Netherlands is very active on looking opportunities outside Europe for the economy growth. On the 5th – 9th October 2015, Dutch Prime Minister Rutte went to Atlanta and Washington DC for economic mission focusing on cybersecurity, financial technology and some other fields for further cooperation.
Atlanta is in the top three cities for financial technology in the States. Indeed, over 70% of payments in the States go through companies from Georgia, hence they are sometimes called, ‘Transaction Alley.’ As one of the fastest growing high tech hubs with a number of Universities, Atlanta is positioning themselves as ‘the next Silicon Valley.’ Atlanta is very interesting for startups as the costs compared to Silicon Valley and the Northeast are relatively low. Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia are very interesting because they are the top locations for defense and cybersecurity.
This economic mission gave a great opportunity for some Dutch financial technology startups to expand their business and show their innovations to the politic entity; at this occasion was Dutch Prime Minister Rutte. This way, Prime minister will be aware on what’s happening in the financial technology world even though it’s only a little overview from some local start-ups.
In the picture: Quiver shows their data security platform to the Prime Minister Rutte
Getting know the trend in depth
Trade mission helps the start-ups somehow a little bit closer to the politic entities, but that is not enough. Why? Because trade mission involved a lot of parties in it and you cannot have a quality conversation with them to discuss opportunities and possibilities for the future. In order to have “that moment”, you need someone or other parties to help you reach the political entities.
After the economic mission to the US, Dutch Prime Minister Rutte aware on the existing of financial technology and he knew that startups are high on the political agenda and they are important for the future economy. Prime Rutte invited some startups to his office in the mid of December 2015 to discuss their work and their passion. Prime Rutte wanted to hear more what the trends, developments and opportunities are in the financial technology sector.
It was an informal meeting and all the startups shared their motivation to start a startup company and how they are changing the financial sector. This way, they had a good quality time to talk about the future prospects within in financial technology with the politic entities and they could address the challenges they had with the government. Several points were discussed: the difficulties in attracting talents, further possible improvements to the fiscal climate and greater emphasis on entrepreneurship and IT-skills in education. Other than that is the procedure for getting a new employee permit that takes around three months and the Dutch tax system, which they believe can be made more friendly for startups.
By getting know the trend and challenges that startups have, it gives a better overview for the politic entities to provide solutions for them thus they can innovate faster.
In the picture from left to right: Jop Hartog (BlockTrail), Don Ginsel (Holland FinTech),Neelie Kroes (StartupDelta), Mark Rutte (MP), Conny Dorrestijn (Shiraz), Korstiaan Zandvliet (Symbid), Ali Niknam (Bunq)
Holland FinTech helps startups and politic entities
Based on the two events above, Holland FinTech plays an important role in this process. In a economic mission, Holland FinTech helps the financial technology startups to join the mission in order to create awareness and help them explore a new opportunity outside the Netherlands. As Holland FinTech knows that the economic mission involved Prime Minister, it is a good opportunity to reach him implicitly and try to share a little bit overview on what’s happening in financial technology world.
On the second event, Holland FinTech role was to connect the political entities with the financial technology startups. Some of the financial technology startups who joined the informal meeting were Holland FinTech members and it is a great opportunity to facilitate all entities the access to each other. For the startups, they can give feedback or suggestions on what the government could improved to facilitate the innovation better and for the political entities, they can get an update with financial technology developments and knowledge within.
At the end, even we know that the politic entities are difficult to be reached most of the times, but as they know and aware of the potential of this new trend they’d like to help out and find the best solution to accelerate the innovation better.