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FinTech has grown and matured, but need to tackle short term challenges

The title of this analysis is my one-line summary of this year’s biggest FinTech event - Stockholm Fintech Week 2024.

This year’s community organized event was well attended (+1200 attendees from 600 companies and 40 countries) with industry experts, regulators and policy makers discussing the broad landscape that we now fit into the meaning of FinTech. As one of the founding companies and a member of the Swedish Fintech Association, it was a proud moment for Nasdaq when the release of SweFinTech´s fifth annual Fintech report kicked off the public part of the event. A round of applauds for work well done should be given to SweFinTech's secretary general Louise Grabo for compiling the report. Not to forget the compelling presentation on its findings, including the short-term challenges and the future opportunities our industry faces, by our chairman Mats Persson Bergius.

Financial Technology is no longer just startups but part of something greater

To me this year’s event showcased that FinTechs are no longer the new kids on the block in finance. The Swedish fintech community has grown and matured from its initial start-up focus on payments to companies that now challenge traditional finance in all branches of business. Nowadays our collected voice matter in society and it has earned us a seat at the policy table both in Sweden and abroad. Despite the success, our industry is also facing challenges. The rapid change in macro environment has affected the conditions for financing innovative growth negatively.  It is clear to many, and concluded in our lastest Fintech report, that access to capital remains a challenge to many as skyrocketing interest rate has ended an era of free capital and the investor hype seems to have moved on to the abbreviation on everyone’s mind: AI. A topic that besides having its own event track covering the use and impact of AI for FinTech, also found its way into most of the panels and conversations during the days of the event.

Managing increasing volumes of data and the importance of protecting it

With AI lurking around in the background, the importance of data as an enabler of innovation also had its clear place in the discussions on stage. Presentations on new digital regulations, such as the open finance regulation FIDA that govern the exchange of financial customer data, highlighted the opportunities and concerns that the inflation seen in produced and available data can bring to consumers and the competitive landscape. Digitalization and expanding data lakes has also put data breaches and cyber security at the top of companies' and regulators' priority lists for the coming year. Even if the audience was reminded that cyber security is a mission for all in the threatening geopolitical landscape that surrounds us. In order for society at large to be able to defend itself against cyber threats, it also stood clear that smaller companies need to close the gap on resilience to be on par with its larger peers.

Modern payments structure’s ability to enhance digital commerce and the role digital transformation and embedded finance plays in reducing friction when adopting seamless payment processes had its natural audience at the event. The discussion on digitalization of finance also expanded into new methods and technology to make fighting financial crime more efficient. A common conclusion from these tracks was the need and power of joint ventures and collaboration between stakeholders to further advance business propositions or enhance technology changes cross the financial ecosystem.

Inspired by an impressive event, I look forward to Swedish FinTech´s own yearly FinTech event "Fintechdagen" later this autumn. Hope to see many of our members there, to take part in discussions about the state of FinTech, make new connnections and share knowledge with others in our community.  

Read the full Fintech report here!


Markus Mild

Nasdaq, European Regulatory Strategy

Board member, SweFinTech

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