Why Are The Most Innovative Banks Outside The UK? Case Study

By David Brear. The Full article can be seen HERE


I hope I am not about to shatter anyone’s egos here but this is something that has puzzled me for a long time; Why are most innovative banks outside the UK?

If you look at nearly every list that is put out for the most innovative banks on the planet you will see almost no UK banks in there.

Take this one from BAI for example for the “most innovative banking organizations”. No UK banks in here but the same names crop up; mBank, Garanti, La Caxia, Fidor, BBVA et al.

All of these organizations are outside of the UK in origination, and for the most part, most of their thinking and doing is outside of the UK also.

With only Fidor having a presence in the UK, although BBVAs investment in Atom might mean they argue they have a toe in the waters at least!

Now Santander would have a fair challenge to this in recent years, but even still the customer facing capability currently in the market of Santander is very similar to that of all of its closet UK competitors and for all other things I regard them Spain based.

So what’s the deal? The UK is the center of the FinTech world, on most people’s listings. We have the regulator who supports innovation and we have a blossoming design and technology pool to pluck talent from.

So why I ask are UK banks the “also rans” of European banking innovation fronts? How can this be the case?


Here come the excuses…

Innovation is hard in UK banks. Hell just getting through each day is tough at a bank, as I can testify to.

Im busy…

You’ve a day full of meetings that you may or may not need to attend.

My boss…

A boss that, if I play the statistics, probably doesn’t “get” digital and what you actually need to do.

Multiple choice pointlessness…

You’ve a wealth of pointless multiple choice exams you have to do to prove you’re not a crook on a monthly basis.

Our governance…

You’ve a governance processes and project processes that is setup to avoid issues and deliver change in a controlled fashion. This is all code for change averse.

FinTech pressures…

On top of all of this you then have all these two men band FinTech guys starting up in the basements and parent’s lofts making you look stupid with what they can deliver.

That last one reminds me of my favorite Jimmy Carr joke with a few tweaks…


I genuinely get it; it’s hard but that’s not good enough of an excuse.

The Full article can be seen HERE

Author: Jason Williams

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