CFA Institute 11 February 2022
Future of the FinTech Eco-System
CFA Institute Alpha Summit APAC Fireside Chat presented by CFA Institute and ACCA Hong Kong
Virtual Session: Video On Demand
CFA Institute Alpha Summit APAC, a two-day virtual conference focusing on the investment industry’s biggest challenges and most compelling trends across Asia Pacific, was held on 10-11 February 2022.
Technology’s disruption of financial services has only just begun, and financial platforms from payments to insurance and everything in between will undergo some kind of tech-driven transformation. How does a successful Fintech eco-system look like, and how can investors and consumers benefit? While the future is looking bright, what are the potential ethical and cybersecurity considerations that need to be resolved? How will the ecosystem evolve and affect investors and firms, and will the changes have a positive or negative impact on the current low levels of investor trust in the investment industry?
- Jennifer Tan, FCCA, chair of ACCA Hong Kong and CEO of Alipay Financial Services (HK) Limited
- Dr. Alan Lok, CFA, director of ethics education at CFA Institute
Watch the Video
Changing the Business Mindset
This conversation initially maps out the e-payment business model and the ecosystem required for such transactions. Tan explains that an app or a platform to provide service is vital. Alongside this application, companies need a sizeable user community as well as a widely established merchant network. Service providers cannot do everything, which means they need to partner with other providers, for example, payment settlement companies.
In addition, Tan reveals the challenges faced when trying to change consumer behaviour (vis-à-vis payments), mainly because artificial intelligence is still a new concept to most people in Hong Kong SAR. It is possible to alter customers’ patterns through incentives and clear guidance on the advantages of electronic payment systems, including how digital transformation can be expedited in a low-cost manner.
The Path to Customer Value
Tan stresses how customer value is created when pain points are removed, a lesson that always holds true for financial-services companies. Collaboration is key. She cites Alipay’s work with insurance companies as an example, explaining that Alipay will tailor its approach to specific sectors and then deliver appropriate solutions.
She also touches on the power of network effects. For example, Alipay benefits from a well-penetrated merchant network. She explains that this is crucial. According to Tan, having a powerful app that consumers like is practically useless if it can be used only in one or two shops.
The Growing Relevance of Super-Apps
Lok and Tan look toward future developments in the e-payment industry, such as the rise of lifestyle super-apps through merger and acquisition activity and partner collaboration. With this in mind, Tan explains that Alipay already partners with ticketing and transport providers. In practical terms, the company has the potential to become a single gateway to a host of services.
The discussion also touches on how e-payment might work in the metaverse. Pragmatically, Tan points out that whether a purchase is made in a physical or virtual world, “You still need a payment to complete the transaction.” She concludes by observing that e-payments will become a holistic experience encompassing a customer’s entire life.
CFA Institute Alpha Summit APAC 2022
Virtual Sessions - Video On Demand:
- Welcome and Opening Remarks: Think Beyond the Horizon
- Fireside Chat: Progress in Greening the Financial System—Lessons Learned and Looking Forward
- Panel Discussion: Climate Change Risk – Action for Industry Stakeholders
- Panel Discussion: Global and Regional ESG Regulations and Standards – Implications for the Financial Services Industry
- Panel Discussion: The Pandemic’s Impact on Shareholder Activism
- Keynote and Fireside Chat: SDG Investing
- PGIM Sponsored Session: 2022 Best Ideas - The Road to Renewal
- Panel Discussion: Managing Pension Funds for Sustainable Long-Term Return
- Panel Discussion: Trends and Changes in Capital Markets Formation
- Fireside Chat: Future of the FinTech Eco-System
- Panel Discussion: Investment Management Professional of the Future
Dr Lok is responsible for nurturing ethics trainers, producing ethics bite-size media as well as facilitating member societies to promote ethical behavior in their local capital markets. In his role, Dr Lok works with member societies to advance awareness and adoption of CFA Institute ethics and standards, as well as policy positions on ethical conduct and culture related issues. This involves outreach to local stakeholders, including the industry, financial regulator, and the public across the APAC markets. Dr Lok also manages ethics related content and events together with societies leaders as well as facilitating their outreach activities on the Asia-Pacific Research Exchange (ARX) post publication.
Dr Lok joined CFA Institute in February 2014 as the Director of Capital Markets Policy in the Standards & Advocacy Division (APAC) before moving to the role of Director, Society Advocacy Engagement (APAC) in January 2017. In that role, Dr Lok has built up close relationships with society leaders and volunteers in the APAC region. Dr Lok was also responsible for directing the establishment of the Asia-Pacific Research Exchange (ARX). Over the years, he co-authored two monographs on portfolio pumping and market manipulation, submitted numerous regulatory consultation papers, written many blogs & articles and supported the Singapore Society in their Industry Research series in the Singapore Business Times.
During the decade prior to joining CFA Institute, Dr Lok was the senior investment manager of a Chinese solar-energy conglomerate and worked as both a buy and sell-side research analyst in Singapore. Dr Lok also served as the Adjunct head of two modules in Nanyang Technological University (南阳理工学院) as well as the module leaders for various universities in Hong Kong SAR, Mainland China, and Singapore.
Dr Lok graduated with a degree in Electrical & Electronic Engineering from the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore in 2003. Subsequently, he went on to read his MBA at the University of Manchester in 2013. He obtained the FRM certification from the Global Association of Risk Professionals in 2007 and was subsequently awarded the CFA certification from the CFA Institute in 2008. Dr Lok was recently awarded a doctorate degree from the University of Middlesex, London in 2021. His latest publication was a co-authorship with ACCA entitled “21 Sector Analysis: A Questioning Framework for Investors”.
As well as being AlipayHK CEO, Jennifer is also an Executive Vice President for Ant Group, where she is in charge of formulating and implementing strategy and government development plans for the group’s business in the Greater Bay Area. Before joining AlipayHK, Jennifer gained extensive senior management experience with various Fortune 500 multinational corporations and global conglomerates, including 20 years at Hutchison Telecommunications (Hong Kong), where she rose to become COO. Jennifer is a qualified accountant and holds a master’s degree in business administration.