Picture of Doug Mackenzie

Doug Mackenzie

July 1, 2024

Fintech Fringe Festival: Day 3 Recap

Product & Tech/
Growth Marketing

For Day 3 of The FintechFringe Festival hosted at the fantastic Thought Machine HQ, we looked at elements that truly contribute to a fintech’s success. Product and Marketing, two pillars for which you can build a robust, high growth yet reliable fintech! With that in mind we cracked on with our tech and product track. There were so many incredible discussions for these two days – we can’t even fit them all in this article!

Product & Tech Conference

Travers Clarke-Walker, CMO, previously the CCO of Thought Machine, and one of their early employees opened the event sharing his insights on how to build a multi billion dollar fintech company. His insights into deal structuring, stakeholder identification, and international challenges were invaluable. While admitting that keeping things simple being critical when scaling, Clarke – Walker asked “Why go international at all? You are going to need to internationalise as single markets just aren’t big enough.” The fintech and banking scene is just too small in one nation to support this level of scale.

Thriving Under Pressure

After our Gold Sponsor’s Opening Keynote, we immediately followed up with a fireside chat with Andrew McKibben, Head of International Technology at Bank of America, and Elizabeth Lumley, Deputy Editor at The Banker, highlighted the hurdles banks face when working with fintechs. They discussed the pressures and restrictions on banks and how the traditional power dynamics between fintechs and banks were not always as they seemed. The war for talent for instance is a classic example. McKibben described attracting talent as a bank as “It’s not easy, but the banks offer scale, resources and solving really complex problems on a big global scale. We spend $12 Billion Dollars on tech.” With that sized war chest he was confident people would be interested in engaging.

How do you fix what isn’t broke?

A panel on stability and resilience featured Alina Timofeeva, Lee Provoost of Flagstone, Tamsin Powell of Creditspring, Dave Starling of NatWest Group, and Jake Figg of mmob. They discussed building scalable but sustainable tech infrastructures, using cloud technologies, and ensuring service quality during growth. Figg highlighted how actually the human element behind making the tech was critical by  “bringing in a team atmosphere is so important. Achieving outcomes that are harmonious across teams is so important. From my perspective that is about engendering an atmosphere where people aren’t afraid to make mistakes.” Continuing the narrative that the human behind the tech was important David Starling put forward that organisations even have to ask the question “do you have a disease outbreak plan??” when looking to partner with fintech organisations.

Growth Marketing Conference

Cramming in this many marketeers for the Growth Marketing event meant the afternoon was always going to be a loud affair. In the brilliant Thought Machine HQ, the stage was set for our experts to highlight how to turn the practical fintech industry into something far more human focused. 

Our keynote for the track Jana Straiton, Head of Marketing for Adobe and previously Paypal, delivered a keynote on building a fintech brand of the future, emphasising meaningful brand experiences – including contactless payment dogs to save a rescue shelter!

Money never felt like Monzo

Tierney Cowap from Monzo Bank shared insights on shifting from word-of-mouth to full-branded campaigns. As the UK is about to become covered in ‘hot coral’ the new campaign ‘Money never felt like Monzo’ has been such a hit in the industry and it’s been incredible to see the whole industry get behind it.

The UK has already been painted ‘Hot Coral’ now it was time to convert the marketing from word of mouth to a proper, driven campaign. The campaign is all about the emotional juxtaposition that money evoke. Tierney told us that “Money can feel so scary and jarring and overwhelming. At Monzo we aim to help people feel more confident and empowered to tackle their own particular money goals.”

Mic drop moment

A key element of Fintech Fringe Festival is preacticality – and our next session was as about helping our audience with navigating the regulatory minefield of fintech marketing. Featuring Zhenya Winter of Bottomline, Amélie Arras of Zumo, and Lucy Heavens of Salv. They started the session with a show of hands to see the audience’s thoughts on the regulators. Interestingly the audience were overwhemingly pro regualotor. discussed strategies for adapting to the sudden and quite dramatic regulatory changes impacting fintech marketing currently and even involved an actual Mic Drop from Zhenya Winters.

Huge thanks to Thought Machine for hosting us and Payal Raina for being a star MC for the day.


For those eager to continue the dialogue, join online at Fintech Fringe Forum where you can access resources and read top tips on support scaling fintechs.