Technology in Finance is a Game Changer

Keynote speaker Chris Skinner talks digital delivery

July 16, 2018

SINGAPORE — Keynote speaker Chris Skinner, fintech expert and best-selling author, spoke about the changes in fintech and how the future of business is being reinvented during Monday's general session at the 2018 World Credit Union Conference.

“We have finally reached the point where technology is the game changer in financial services,” said Skinner. For credit unions, helping people with technology equates to building the business around customer engagement, but digitally delivered. “Today we are about product, platform and experience and we have to build digital institutions with digital change,” said Skinner. “Teenagers are reinventing money by writing code. Knowing how to leverage that is the secret sauce.”

He pointed out that the idea of control has shifted and “no one controls anything anymore-except the customer”. Skinner explained that data is where the battlefield is for the customer in the next decade. The real battle of the future is in the back office where all the data sits and credit unions should be questioning how fit their back office is to handle this.   

In the State of the Movement, World Council President and CEO Brian Branch provided a historical timeline of the global credit union and financial cooperative movement from the birth and introduction of cooperative banking in Germany to the current climate of technological business model disruption. 

“Today, we are a movement of 73,000 cooperative financial institutions serving 238 million members,” said Branch, talking about global challenges including food security, employment, climate change, the future of the internet, as well as financial inclusion. He highlighted how global challenges become community challenges and communities turn to their credit unions to respond. Today’s challenge is about interconnectivity and linkage and responding to these global challenges.

“We were the disruptors more than 100 years ago. Now we have to learn from today’s disruptors to be able to respond to today’s challenges. Working in your credit unions, doing what you do, serving your members, you are part of history and for that, we thank you,” said Branch. 

During World Council’s annual general meeting, three members were presented with the 2018 Membership Growth Awards which are based on the World Council of Credit Unions latest Statistical Report data. The winners are:

  • FULM Savings House – FYR Macedonia
  • Sicredi – Brazil
  • Association of Rural Savings and Credit Institutions Inc. (AIRAC) – Dominican Republic

Monday finished with a variety of well-attended breakout sessions and lunch-and-learns including blockchain, results-driven data analytics, regulation and innovation, inclusive leadership, and recruitment and retention strategies.

The 2018 World Credit Union Conference concludes 18 July with a closing reception at the Suntec Convention Center.

Follow conference activities and daily event photos on Facebook and Twitter with #WCUC2018.

World Council of Credit Unions is the global trade association and development platform for credit unions. World Council promotes the sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services. World Council advocates on behalf of the global credit union system before international organizations and works with national governments to improve legislation and regulation. Its technical assistance programs introduce new tools and technologies to strengthen credit unions' financial performance and increase their outreach.

World Council has implemented 300+ technical assistance programs in 89 countries. Worldwide, 85,400 credit unions in 118 countries serve 274 million people. Learn more about World Council's impact around the world at

Contact: Greg Neumann
Organization: World Council of Credit Unions
Phone: +1 608-395-2048
Keynote speaker Chris Skinner presents to 2018 WCUC attendees
Keynote speaker Chris Skinner presents to 2018 WCUC attendees
World Council President and CEO Brian Branch during 2018 State of the Movement
World Council President and CEO Brian Branch during 2018 State of the Movement

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