Let’s face it, 2020 hasn’t been the year we were anticipating. We’re experiencing increased stress levels created by not only by fears of contracting a life-threatening virus, but also an economic downturn of unknown proportions.
And from a business perspective, stay-at-home orders and lack of childcare create a frustrating environment for co-worker communications. Not only that, but the lack of in-person meetings and a firm handshake makes it difficult to land partnerships.
Despite these (and many more) woes, here are a handful of silver linings:
Digital is working
Even for firms who have yet to implement it, the technology is available for them to create a fully-digital banking experience. While many of these capabilities have been around for awhile, we have now reached a point where consumers feel comfortable with interacting with tools such as remote onboarding, remote deposit check capture, and even chatbots.
Funding is on
At the onset of the public health crisis earlier this year, many prepared to say farewell to VC funding. And though funding has declined and valuations are stagnant, the fintech industry is still experiencing growth. So far this week alone, we’ve seen five fintechs raise $262 million in funding.
Fintechs are hiring
Layoffs and furloughs have taken place within the industry and there may be another round of layoffs in the future as the coronavirus drags on. However, we may ultimately see many of these employees shift to new positions. That’s because there are plenty of fintechs hiring. A search on Angel List reveals that more than 800 fintechs are currently seeking to fill roles. And the new remote working environment enables many companies to tap into global talent.
Partnerships are strong
Social distancing requirements may be preventing companies from gathering together in conference rooms and sealing a deal with a handshake. However, that doesn’t seem to be stopping fintechs from inking deals. Over the past month, we saw 10 major fintech-bank partnerships. Much of this collaboration was driven by the sudden need for traditional providers to digitize their offerings.
Transformation is mandatory
This point may seem like a strange silver lining. In fact, many may view mandatory transformation as more of a storm cloud, since fintech as an industry will not come through this crisis scot-free. Unfortunately, there will be cut backs and unplanned exits. Here’s the silver lining part– companies that fight to see the other side of the crisis will be better off for it. And so will their customers.