Fintech, simply defined, is the joining of financial services and information technology. If you think about it, fintech has existed from at least 1867, when Edward Calahan invented the tickertape machine. In recent times, fintech has taken an explosive evolutionary leap, as developers of technology have turned their attention to not just improving financial services and making them more efficient, but to disrupting service models that the financial industry has relied on for centuries.
Why is this important? At the end of the day, this is all about money. My money, your money, and how we—as individuals and institutions—engage in commerce, globally and locally. It is an essential part of what we as humans do, no matter what kind of economic, political, or social system we belong to. Commerce is essential to our existence, and that is why fintech is so exciting.
And here we are—the lawyers. Whether you represent buy-side or sell-side in the fintech space, the common theme is often the urgency with which counselling is required by our clients. Whether it is securing an investment in a promising emerging company, finalizing a joint venture or partnership to get a new product to market, or advising on how regulators will scrutinize a particular transaction or technology platform, no client wants to miss an opportunity. With so many players competing for the next best thing, there is a fear that each opportunity will be fleeting.
It is within this landscape that we present the following five articles, each dealing with a particular development or challenge within the fintech space that we as lawyers face on a daily basis:
- European Fintech M&A: Key Issues for Strategic Investors
- Vendor Risk Management as Applied to Fintech Contracts
- Fintech: Cybersecurity Risk Management for Financial Institutions and Technology Vendors
- The Role of Regulation in Financial Innovation: Does Fintech Need Regulation to Flourish?
- PSD2—the EU's regulatory response to innovation in the payments sector
We hope you find these articles educational and perhaps even thought-provoking. Just 36 years after Mr. Calahan's invention of the stock ticker, J. DuPratt White and George B. Case were hired to organize Bankers Trust Company. Ever since, White & Case has been one of the premier law firms servicing the financial services industry. Leveraging our deep experience in the financial services sector, our multidisciplinary fintech team focuses on the convergence of financial institutions and technology, advising on the wide range of legal, regulatory, and commercial issues arising from the burgeoning industry.
This content first appeared in Chambers Professional Advisers: FinTech.