How Does the FinTech Capital of the World Stay Ahead of Other Cities? By Leveraging Partnerships and Creating New Ones
Tuesday, November 14th, 2017
As financial technology and financial services leaders travel to Las Vegas for Money20/20, the world’s largest payments and financial services innovation event, the Atlanta region is tapping partnerships to stay on top.
Metro Atlanta’s role in helping to create the payments industry and being home to more than 60 percent of the nation’s FinTech companies – including First Data, NCR, Worldpay and Global Payments – established the region as the World FinTech Capital. It also earned the moniker “Transaction Alley” because more than 70 percent of all debit, credit and gift card transactions in America flow through the area.
Now, the Metro Atlanta Chamber, the Technology Association of Georgia, the American Transaction Processors Coalition, FinTech Atlanta and other organizations are working together to reinforce the region’s advantages for startups and existing businesses alike. Those benefits include being a hotbed for talent, having a favorable economic climate for the industry itself, and being a place where both businesses and workers can thrive.
"From logistics companies and airlines to retailers and restaurants, all companies depend on financial technology to power transactions quickly and securely every day," said Barry McCarthy, executive vice president, head of network and security solutions at First Data, and chairman of FinTech Atlanta. "The collaboration between the public sector and the private sector in Atlanta has enabled the city to emerge as the global FinTech capital, bringing together companies of all sizes to help advance commerce not only in the city but also in the industry as a whole."
This partnership helps companies and the FinTech ecosystem flourish, as it connects established Georgia companies with local startups for Money20/20. Established companies “adopt” a startup, providing them with a grant of $5,000 to cover costs of attending. In addition, corporate sponsors meet with their adopted startup before the show, strategizing ways to make the most effective use of their time on the ground. Some startups spend time in their sponsor’s booth, while others plan strategic meetings with clients and prospects the sponsor has helped set up. This year, startups benefitting from the partnership include Authomate (sponsored by FIS), Monotto (sponsored by First Data), Trust Stamp (sponsored by TSYS) and Wela (co-sponsored by Accenture and SunTrust Bank).
“From the outset just under two years ago, we found fantastic mentors and partners in the local financial services community,” said Andrew Gowasack, CEO and co-founder of Trust Stamp. “We were thrilled when one of the most revered financial companies in the state, with their decades of experience, offered to sponsor us because it validates we are addressing a critical need in the market.”
Karim Ahmad, executive vice president of product and innovation at TSYS, said the company is proud to be part of an innovative community that is dedicated to supporting local FinTech businesses of all sizes. “We view this sponsorship as a unique opportunity to support the community and the startup ecosystem, while raising the visibility of Atlanta’s “transaction alley” at the largest FinTech event in the country. This initiative is important to TSYS because it’s Atlanta supporting Atlanta coming together as a united industry.”
In addition to the opportunities arranged by their sponsors, startups have time to mix privately with established business leaders at a CEO dinner, creating open channels for mutual support. During Money20/20, the region will also host Atlanta’s Transaction Alley Reception, an opportunity for several hundred business leaders and guests to mingle and network.
One year after debuting the launch of FinTech Atlanta at Money20/20 2016, the region continues to have strong representation on stage and in the expo hall, as well.
This year’s speakers from Atlanta include Andrew B. Morris, Money20/20; Kathryn Petralia, Kabbage; Bruce Lowthers, FIS; Adam Roseman, LateShift; Andrew Gowasack, Trust Stamp; Christian Ruppe, Monotto; Kim Goodman, Worldpay US; Esther Pigg, FIS; and Simon Black, PPRO.
Exhibitors include Bridge2 Solutions, CAN Capital, Equifax, FactorTrust, Features Analytics,
Featurespace, Feedzai, FIS, First Data, Fiserv, IDology, Ingenico, LexisNexis Risk Solutions, NCR, PPRO, TSYS, Sage Payment Solutions, TriNet, UL Transaction Security and Worldpay. Sponsors from or with a Georgia presence include Accenture, Bank of America Merchant Services, Bridge2 Solutions, Deloitte, EY, Equifax, Featurespace, Federal Reserve Bank, Feedzai, First Data, Fiserv, Factor Trust, Features Analytics, FIS, FinTech Atlanta, IBM, IDology, InComm, InfoSys, Ingenico, LateShift, LexisNexis, NCR, PPRO, Pivotal, Sage Payment Solutions, TSYS, TriNet, UL, Vantiv, VMware and Worldpay.