Smaller institutions are being technologically excluded – here’s why that matters

Europe’s consolidated banking market is consistently left out of the banking technology conversation. Here’s Natech President & CEO Thanasis Navrozoglou on why smaller institutions deserve to be heard…

Europe’s smaller banking institutions are the backbone of national economies. They support customers in often underserved communities, providing products and access to financial services that underpin daily life for millions of Europeans. There are around 1,500 such institutions in German-speaking countries alone, including cooperatives, credit unions and small commercial banks providing localized services to SMEs, for instance.

In the wake of the 2008 financial crash, trust is everything. Smaller institutions who have earned that trust, often over hundreds of years in business, are economically – and arguably culturally – invaluable.

The market is consolidating and small institutions simply can’t afford to stand still. Regulation is constantly evolving, forcing institutions to adapt to or integrate new standards and processes. Customer expectations are increasingly digital, real-time and cross-border. And neo-banks, fintech mergers and digital-first challengers are snapping at the heels of centuries-old institutions. Fail to evolve, fast – and you fail to survive.

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