The FinTech arena represents one of the most interesting areas for innovation in 2019, holding implications for both companies and consumers. FinTech changes the way people bank, shop and make major financial decisions. The need for user-friendly, secure platforms is at an all-time high.
That's why events like the Female Founders in Tech competition are so important. FinTech needs cutting-edge ideas right now and this competition showcases the innovative power of women entrepreneurs. It also creates exciting opportunities for mentorship and collaboration, and Discover® Global Network is proud to be a sponsor of the competition.
Mentoring Future Innovators
As part of our sponsorship, Discover Global Network had two executives serve as mentors during the competition. Diane Offereins, President of Payment Services, and Ricardo Leite, Vice President, Head of Global Products & Partnerships, at the company mentored two of the top five teams, fostering support for the best ideas to come out of the event.
Discover Global Network actively seeks partnerships with promising startups, as was the case with Fitpay. The relationship began when Fitpay was in its early stages and Discover provided product development support, and the collaboration strengthened as the company grew. Eventually, the two brands worked together to implement Discover cards in Garmin devices.
Much like their partnership with Fitpay, Discover Global Network seeks a wide range of ways to support talented individuals and startups. In partnership with UST Global, Discover Financial Services hired 10 women who had recently completed STEM training into roles in quality assurance and software testing. Discover Global Network takes its role in building a dynamic, diverse FinTech ecosystem seriously, and looks forward to helping teams in this competition position themselves for success.
What's Ahead in FinTech
The digital payments space in particular continues to be ripe for innovation and disruption. Technologies such as connected cars, voice-activated commerce and wearable devices create new avenues for brands to connect with their customers and offer holistic shopping experiences.
There are many factors that will drive digital payments forward in the coming year. One is enhanced security and authentication, which will increase user confidence about the safety of their financial data.
Another is a diversity of perspectives, particularly in product design. Building safe, user-friendly experiences for all customers requires input from every potential user group. Events such as the Female Founders in Tech Competition elevate new voices and solutions that speak to a broad range of needs.
As digital payment methods such as mobile wallets, contactless cards, wearables, and voice-activated platforms become more ubiquitous, the industry must ensure it's making these options accessible and appealing to all. Mentoring and supporting diverse FinTech talent is critical to fulfilling that goal.
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