What if we didn’t have banks?

I’ve been leading blockchain training lately for my team and a frequent question is what would be the ultimate, logical outcome of digital currencies, crypto currencies, and blockchain. A world without banks as we know them today, I would reply.

Looks like the team at Mic we’re thinking the same! Their article on a world without banks is pretty interesting, and I would agree – it’ll take a while longer before we really see this futuristic, bank-less world.

What if we didn’t… have banks? (James Dennin, Mic)

Blockchain Roundup

I was recently asked to explore Central Bank stances on the use of blockchain. As you imagine, Central Banks really don’t seem to mind blockchains or distributed ledgers. They care tremendously what you do with them, though! Digital cash is quite scary, for one. The right to be forgotten is another.

I have pulled together some research from across the internet what Central Banks think of blockchain, distributed ledgers, and crypto currencies. Have fun going down the rabbit trail!

Why are Central Bank policies on blockchain solutions important?

  • For established, traditional banking institutions, there are many use cases for blockchain solutions, but few business cases.
    • Blockchain solutions create dis-intermediates distributed networks of untrusted participants.
    • The fundamental reason for the existence of a bank is to be a central trusted intermediary.
  • Existing bank back office functions, while slow, cumbersome, and error-prone, still work
  • So, truly industry changing solutions most likely must be instigated by Central Banks

Central Bank stances on digital currencies

What if a Central Bank issues digital money?

Central Bank perspectives on bitcoin or other crypto currencies

New Year at The Haven in Ipoh

Ever experience instant regret when you check into your hotel? The Haven at Ipoh was just such a feeling.

For a top rated luxury resort, it’s not a good start when you’re told to walk through the car park to find your building. Not great to find your keycard won’t operate the elevator. Then, when you finally get into the room, especially not wonderful to be sucker punched with a moldy odor and stained towels. Even the curtains are stained a disquieting splash of red, and scuff marks adorn the walls and floors.

While the room aired out, my wife and I headed down to the poolside, which is immensely better experience. Here, you can imagine it really is a luxury resort, rather than here overpriced identical high rise apartment buildings.

The staff, while at turns inexperienced or surly, quickly replaced the towels and sprayed deodorizer while we were enjoying the pool, giving the musky smell a nice overtone of lemon. At least there’s a nice big table for my wife to work her creativity and calligraphy.

It’s only Day One. Here’s hoping the rest of the trip gets better. Otherwise I’ll be kicking myself for not booking The Weil Hotel

Singapore Fintech Festival 2017

Off to the second Fintech Festival in Singapore! An exciting trip as this is a trip of firsts for me. First time at an international Fintech conference, first time in Singapore, and first time traveling without my wonderful wife since we were married.

I have lots of hopes for this trip, mostly to see what exciting opportunities are out there, and especially in financial inclusion. I have lately been thinking of how to begin something great – something limited only by imagination. As I fly on AirAsia, I am struck by their simple tag line.

Now Everyone Can Fly.

How great and simple, yet how much adventure and exotic promises it holds. AirAsia opened travel to a whole range of people in ASEAN. Why can’t we have an equally open and inclusive banking proposition for, well, everyone.

Now Everyone Can Save.

I would love to make this a reality for ASEAN, with a simple proposition of free savings accounts and very low (if not free) investment and retirement options. Combined with a great multi currency and remittance service, I am confident we could create a winner.