FinTECHTalents: the virtual solution to networking in a lockdown

With thousands of digital delegates set to log in to FinTECHTalents’ Virtual Spring, the June 10 event looks like it’s going to be a groundbreaking moment in networking innovation for our sector. Attending on behalf of Marqeta will be Deanna Fernandez. She spoke to Shaun O’Keeffe from our marketing team, in an interview about FinTECHTalents’ past and future — and why Marqeta felt it was important to sponsor this year’s gathering.  

Last year’s FinTECHTalents took place at Printworks and you went along. What were the highlights of the event?

FinTECHTalents truly are standout networking events for our sector. There’s loads of learning, insights, and opportunities to meet fintech experts from the smallest startups to the largest established organisations.

Last year, I was really impressed with what Cognitive Finance’s Clara Durodié had to say about AI, especially her reminder that code is only as good as the coder — even algorithms have parents. This is pertinent to Marqeta, as we place a high priority on our modern card issuing and payment processing platform’s 280+ APIs being fully and consistently documented in order to deliver a world-class developer experience.

It was also a fun event. I’ll never forget the pair of Starling Bank socks gifted to us by Anne Boden, which came in handy as it was a tad cold on the first day! I also loved the lunch in a bag, draught craft beer, and a live DJ. The unique vibe made it a memorable moment in the fintech calendar.

That sounds incredibly cool. Can you tell us why Marqeta wanted to sponsor and get involved with FinTECHTalents this year? 

Like every sector across the economy, fintech has been affected in some way by the coronavirus. Whilst we pride ourselves on being tech natives, the total transition to virtual meeting platforms has been a fascinating period of learning and opportunity. We’re keen to help nurture this new culture that has sprung up and feel it’s important to support efforts to deliver virtual innovation. 

We want to see what it means for networking, efficiencies, and product development. For those reasons, I’m looking forward to attending interactive virtual sessions, using the “people” tab to start conversations with fellow delegates, and listening to a wide range of fantastic speakers.   

We’re also looking forward to welcoming digital delegates to our virtual booth, where we’ll be sharing the story of Marqeta in Europe, along with learning about what’s going on in fintech and banking in the U.K. and beyond. It’s going to be really interesting to see how companies are adapting to a contactless, socially distanced work-from-home world.  

What are you most looking forward to in terms of companies and people you’d like to meet or sessions you’d like to attend?

With more than 3,000 confirmed delegates, there are a lot of opportunities to network! But I’m particularly keen to understand what innovation and transformation looks like for traditional banks, including Virgin Money, HSBC, Lloyds, and NatWest. On top of this, we’ve also had a decade of fintech innovation following the financial crisis, so I’d like to learn how the roadmap for those firms who were “born digital” might have changed. 

Before the lockdown, events like FinTECHTalents offered the best opportunity to engage with our community and learn, share, and innovate. We’re a resilient and resourceful sector and we’re keen to find ways of continuing collaboration and supporting progress. So when we heard a physical event was going to be replicated online, we couldn’t help but get involved. 

And finally, why should people take the time to come and visit the Marqeta virtual booth? 

If you want to know the secret to quickly building a successful card programme, come and check out our booth. We’re looking forward to introducing visitors to our world-class card issuing and payment processing technology, which is helping our partner brands such as Twisto, Capital on Tap, YAPEAL, and Klarna deliver card programmes that their customers love. 

But it’s not just about what we have to offer. We want people to engage with us because we’re keen to learn and exchange ideas — as well as hearing your innovation visions for your fintech or bank. By sharing knowledge we can enrich the sector and better serve today’s consumers who have an insatiable appetite for tech solutions.

Come and meet us online on the 10th of June. We look forward to meeting you online at #FTT.