Fintech Impact


Cosmos with Ethan Buchman | E138

Ep. 138

In this 138th episode of Fintech Impact, Jason Pereira, award-winning financial planner, university lecturer, writer, and host interviews Ethan Buchman, Co-Founder of Cosmos and CEO of Informal Systems. Cosmos is one of the largest blockchains and one of the most valuable cryptocurrencies in the world, of which Ethan Buchman was an integral part of creating. 

Episode Highlights: 

● 00:32 – Ethan Buchman explains Cosmos. 

● 02:53 – What is Ethan Buchman’s history? 

● 09:20 – What is the differences between and proof of work and proof of stake? 

● 10:10 – Which countries consumed less power than bitcoin? 

● 11:09 – Where else can you go besides bitcoin to maximize options? 

● 12:00 – They discuss public and private blockchains. 

● 16:06 – Where are the limitations with authurium? 

● 25:24 – What does Informal Systems do? 

● 35:01 – What would Ethan Buchman change in his business or industry? 

● 35:49 – What have been the biggest challenges Ethan has faced? 

● 36:50 – What keeps Ethan Buchman excited each day about his work? 

3 Key Points 

1. Blockchain is the evolution of automating human processes, moving from personal computers, to the cloud, and now to the multi-stakeholder operation. 

2. In 2019, bitcoin consumed more power than Switzerland. 

3. Reducing compliance is an important use case in the blockchain world. 

Tweetable Quotes: 

● “We want to make it as easy as possible for people to build their own blockchains, launch their own blockchains, structure them in the ways that they need to that fit their needs and fit their values, and the values of their community.” – Ethan Buchman 

● “In 2013 I programmed my first bitcoin transaction from scratch, which is almost like a religious experience to be able to do that.” – Ethan Buchman 

● “The public blockchain becomes this source of truth that you can audit against without necessarily revealing all the information to the whole world. The boutry between public and private becomes significantly blurred .” – Ethan Buchman 

Resources Mentioned: 

● Facebook – Jason Pereira’s Facebook 

● LinkedIn – Jason Pereira’s LinkedIn 

● – Website for Fintech Impact 

● – Sign up for Jason Pereira’s newsletter 

● Linkedin – Ethan Buchman

● – Website for Cosmos 

● – Website for Informal Systems

More Episodes


Wise with Nick Catino | E182

Ep. 182
Host Jason Pereira talks to Nick Catino, Head of Policy and Campaigns with Wise. It is a London-based financial technology company founded in January 2011 by Estonians Kristo Käärmann and Taavet Hinrikus. In today’s episode, Nick talks about consumer-facing products used by banks and businesses.Episode Highlights:0.38: Nick says Wise is a global payment technology company giving the best way to move money worldwide used by people who travel, live, and work internationally.3.08: Jason asks Nick about the origin of the company, how it came to be? Nick points out Wise was founded in 2011 as Transfer wise in London.3.10: It has two co-founders Kristo Kaamann and Taavet Hinrikus.4.01: The company’s idea came from the analysis that consumers are getting ripped off to send abroad, and it is so central to our mission today trying the payments more transparent.5.30: Nick says living and leisure is focused on pricing across portal payments. When he travels, he keeps records of his credit card transaction receipts. When he gets back, he calculates how much he has spent, he does this for a living, and it is a complicated calculation.7.17: Jason points out, “If you are running a company and you have to buy from overseas vendors regularly, you will probably speak to your bank about what can be done, and they will graduate you up to the next level.”8.33: Nick states, “When you are a multinational corporation or large business, you have a finance desk that is negotiating these rates in the wholesale market.8.40: As per Mckenzie’s study report, hundred or billion dollars in fees consumers pay in small business pay per year.12.53: Jason asks Nick as a consumer, “If I have to send money somewhere in the world how can he utilize your platform?”13.08: Nick says Wise allows to send money to friends and family members on platform using their name or FI. During traveling, you can use your debit card. It is integrated with apple pay. In small businesses, you can use it for goods and services import and exports, paying workers and freelancers internationally, and combined with several accounting platforms to make easy payments.14.48: Jason asks how you enable business and how is that service different?15.14: Nick says we are making it easy for our customers to move money abroad in the business side. Small businesses are joining our services every month, and not only banks some tech companies are launching platforms that users in the US can pay directly in India or Singapore.16.45: Nick says we tried to make it easier for businesses to use our service. We started a consumer-facing brand, and there are end number of features and excited about market growth in the future by integration between business and banks.18.15: Jason inquires, “What happens if I transact in Euros, but I don’t want Euros? Nick answers then it will automatically transact the lowest cost conversion related to the product.20.10: Nick says payments amortization has been a huge focus in many countries because it benefits consumers, and the ecosystem is very clear.23.00: Jason asks from an end-user perspective, “Why is payment amortization important?” Nick says it’s about the cost. In the UK, on average, fees are 0.4%, and money is moving instantly, but if you are Canadian or American, it is 1% or more, and money can take days to receive on the other side.24.52: Jason says friction is in two ways one is speed, and two is basically cost, and both are impactful on the economy.26.35: Nick reiterates that a global payment company being new in the market is certainly difficult, and lack of consumer awareness about how much you are being charged while sending money abroad is a challenge we have to overcome.27.49: Jason asks Nick, “What excites him most about every day when he wakes up in the morning and keeps doing what he is doing?”27.55: Nick replies that so many smart, driven diverse people, 2400 wiser from more than 70 countries, still continue to learn about different markets in culture and take ownership with projects they are working on is the best part of working with Wise.3 Key Points:Nick talks about the consumer-facing products used by banks and businesses to integrate APIs directly with their platforms.Nick says, “We pay fees to transfer money abroad, but we don’t realize how much we are overcharged, and many consumers and small-scale businesses are unaware of exchange rate markups.”Jason mentions like western union, you need a massive global network of fixed locations that will allocate money on one side of the border to move it to the other side of the border.Tweetable Quotes:“Business doesn’t impact revenue on the way it’s all about living methods of transparency” – Nick Catino“In 2021, sending money is like sending email” - Nick Catino“Many smart-driven diverse people, 2400 wiser from more than 70 countries continues to learn about different markets in culture and take ownership with projects they are working on.” - Nick CatinoResources Mentioned: Editing

Whatifi with Jon Cowley | E181

Ep. 181
In today’s episode, Jason talks to Jon Cowley, founder of Whatifi. It is a visual financial planning software and tool that helps people think through various scenarios in different methodologies than people are accustomed to.Episode Highlights:1.00: Jon says Whatifi is a highly visual low code financial scenario builder and projection platform, making it easy for professionals to visually create, calculate, present and share multiple financial scenarios to their clients.1.46: Jon doesn’t come from a Fintech background; instead, he runs a VFX company. He has created some of the coolest movies and also some of the biggest duds. A lot of these are leveraging technology workflows for Jon.3.03: Jason points out that most people think spreadsheets are developed for users, but very few people think about using presentation devices.3.48: Considering the fundamental problems, Jon had built a software that connects all the logics and events.04.01: Because each step is separate, it is very easy to follow along with the history. Utilizing this simple concept as base, Jon thought, why can’t he apply the same logic in Finance? Whatifi uses the same algorithm and calculates all accounting data.05.13: So far, Jason has not seen any such concept in the Finance Industry. He says that spreadsheets exist for most financial planning software. He appreciates and says that “What Whatifi has done is very simple and logical.”06.41: Jon shares excellent real-live scenarios where Whatifi’s algorithm can be used.07.02: No, thing in our system is just a number, they are the whole set of metadata that is wrapped around, that allows downstream things to adjust accordingly.08.00: Jon talks about building a roadmap so that every single day the starting point is accurate.09.14: Jon points out the importance of planning goals.09.40: Every day at Whatifi Jon’s team updates the baseline to see how they are progressing.11.52: Jon shares Whatifi’s top 3 value propositions. First is with this framework, you can build scenarios far more quickly than the tools currently available. The second is the ultimate scenario. The third is Visualization.13.23: Jason says it is not the Visualization, but the Causality is very transparent.14.01: People who are indecisive and analytical are going to love Whatifi’s tool.15.07: Jason says so many tools are niche at this moment.17.19: Whatifi is the most unique decision-making software that Jason has seen so far. He is curious to know about the responses that Jon has received so far.18.35: Jon says that advisors really like the concept of Whatifi.20.53: Jon shares, “While we have calculation engine, we also have trigger roadmaps.”23.30: Jon would like to see more collaboration between FinTech.25.09: For Jon, the biggest challenge is that they are outsiders who are entering the Fintech world.3 Key Points:Jason asks about Jon’s history and how he came across the idea to launch Whatifi.Listeners learn that nothing in our system is just a number; they are a whole set of metadata.Whatifi is a calculation engine, and we are using it to build scenarios for people, says Jon.Tweetable Quotes:“Metadata gets modified day to day and passed down for calculations.”- Jon Cowley“No, thing in our system is just a number.” - Jon Cowley“There has always been a black box aspect to Financial Planning software.” - Jason Pereira“At the end of the day, it is all math.” - Jason PereiraResources Mentioned:LinkedIn - WhatifiLinkedIn- Jon CowleyWhatifi - WebsiteFacebook– Jason Pereira’s FacebookLinkedIn– Jason Pereira’s– SponsorPodcast Editing

Infosys with Dennis Gada | E180

Ep. 180
Host Jason Pereira talks to Dennis Gada, Senior Vice President and Industry Head for Financial Service for Infosys. It is a global digital services company that offers end-to-end services to its clients from technology to business operations, consulting and helping them in the digital transformation journey, and helping them run in their existing business and technology operations.Episode Highlights:2.40: Jason inquires, “When companies come to Infosys for support, how do you navigate their digital needs?”4.18: Dennis explains, “We work in three different layers; driving efficiency in running business and technology operations, digital transformation of their end-to-end business process, and helping them to grow the business in a new area for consulting services.”5.10: Dennis affirms that the last 12 months post-Covid has seen significant acceleration of client journey, and we can call it a trigger, but it has been a prominent force of transformation.5:50: Dennis says there is an enhanced expectation from that banking and financial service. Not just traditional banking but also wealth management. He adds that all of that should be much more digital, and it has forced financial services firms to become more digital than it already was.8.38: Dennis justifies that firms have been forced to drive change at such a rapid pace that decision making has been so much quicker and adopting to new technology has been so ramping.9.30: Jason says, “He wants to know the decision-making mechanism how those are going to adapt?”9.55: Dennis explains business and technology have really come much closer together. These days discussions in financial service firms are much more about - What is the next wave of digital transformation? How much you can change the customer experience? How much you can leverage cloud and AI capabilities?11.35: Dennis reiterates with all the advancement in technology that has happened, on-boarding of new clients still tends to be the most complex process, and regulations also drive it.15.30: Dennis says more and more of a partnership between fintech, and larger bank and financial service organization will help to drive the transformation instead of fintech trying to get into all banking services themself.16.10: Jason asks Dennis, “How you see the development in these institutions to continue or had a lot of change in the post covid world?”16.39: Dennis says now 99% to 100% of the workforces are working remotely and delivering great values; this is the trend that is not going to change.17.35: Dennis says the digital transformation journey that had started is not going to stop in any aspect.20.59: Dennis says firms have realized that while investing in the cloud they have not compromised in security. Cloud is more secure if not at the same level of security, then their existing data center. That’s the mindset shift that has happened in the last year, and more and more investments are going towards the cloud.21.35: Dennis says as firms invest in the new technology of the future, they also need to re-skill their own workforce as they have already done in Infosys.22.06: Jason is curious to know about the biggest post-pandemic challenge that institutions are going to face.24.20: Dennis says there will be some key challenges to sustain the pace of innovation, manage cybersecurity-related threats and risks. He stresses on the importance of motivating the new workforce to continue to work for large bank vs tech company of fintech and deliver the same kind of productivity.24.42: Jason asks Dennis his one wish for something he wants to change in his company or industry as a whole. Dennis wishes to innovate and scale, thus making that a part of DNA that everybody wakes up every day and comes there to see how you can do things more innovatively.25.30: Jason asks Dennis about digital transformation, the biggest roadblock he had encountered while facing clients he already had.25.37: Dennis says the biggest roadblock is cultural change. There is a mandate at the board level, CXO level. There is also a push from the market, from the client to drive change. There is a lot of democracy and a lot of constrain internally to enable that change.28.12: Dennis says re-skilling of the workforce or right re-skilling of the workforce is an important factor to balance the understanding of business in domain with the understanding of technology.28.56: Jason asks Dennis “What excites him most about every day when he wakes up in the morning and keeps doing what he is doing?”29.40: Denies replies that the exciting thing is the platform we have and the technology we use really. It helps our clients to be successful and helps their end clients manage financial life better.3 Key Points:Dennis talks about his career journey. He has been associated with Infosys for about sixteen years, and Infosys financial business has been growing significantly over the years.Dennis says digitization was not possible unless there was a new technology intervention that we have brought in; it was the automation of loan process, using AI for underwriting, using machine learning for collections, extracting information from documents so that things can be updated at a much faster rate.Jason explains, “How the countries that are still developing tend to have new and better infrastructure that can help them to adapt to the technological changes what is happening currently.”Tweetable Quotes:“Transformation of experience means a transformation of the process itself” – Dennis Gada“Digitization was not possible unless there was a new technology intervention.” – Dennis Gada“Firms have been forced to drive change at such a rapid pace that decision making has been so much quicker and adopt new technology has been so ramping.” – Dennis Gada“These days, discussions in financial service firms are much more about what is the next wave of digital transformation.” – Dennis GadaResources Mentioned:LinkedIn- Dennis Gada’s LinkedInFacebook– Jason Pereira’s FacebookLinkedIn– Jason Pereira’s– SponsorLinkedIn– Jason Pereira’s LinkedInPodcast Editing