At this time every year, we do the Fintech Nexus USA preview show. Our big annual event is coming up next week on May 10-11. Tickets are still available, you can register here to receive 15% off (discount will be applied automatically).
On this episode of the Fintech One-on-One podcast, I chat with Todd Anderson, Chief Content Officer and Matt Murnane, Chief Experience Officer at Fintech Nexus. We go through all the different components of the show and how you can get the most out of your time there.
In this podcast you will learn:
What the expo floor at the show will look like.
How the content will work during the event.
How people can get involved in one-on-one networking.
Who gets into the VIP Meetings Lounge.
Some of the unique experiences available to attendees.
How the PitchIt contest will work.
What our Women in Fintech program is all about.
The different content topics that will be covered this year.
FINTECH ONE-ON-ONE PODCAST – USA PREVIEW SHOW WITH TODD ANDERSON & MATT MURNANE
Welcome to the Fintech One-on-One Podcast. This is Peter Renton, Chairman & Co-Founder of Fintech Nexus.
I’ve been doing these shows since 2013 which makes this the longest-running one-on-one interview show in all of fintech, thank you for joining me on this journey. If you like this podcast, you should check out our sister shows, PitchIt, the Fintech Startups Podcast with Todd Anderson and Fintech Coffee Break with Isabelle Castro or you can listen to everything we produce by subscribing to the Fintech Nexus podcast channel.
Peter Renton: Today on the show we are doing something a little bit different, we do it this time every year though. This is the annual Fintech Nexus Preview Show where I invite a couple of my colleagues, I’ve got Todd Anderson and Matt Murnane today, we are going to talk about the big show happening in New York on May 10th &11th and this, for everyone who’s coming, this is really going to help you get the most out of your time spent on the show.
We talk about all the different components of the show by really listening all the way through to the end. You will get an understanding of how it’s laid out, what to expect and how, again, to make the most of your time. If you haven’t got a ticket yet, it’s not too late, you can go to fintechnexus.com and still buy your ticket and you can get the discount code “podcast” and that will get you 15% off. We are accepting tickets all the way up until Wednesday, May 10th; hope you enjoy the show.
Welcome to the podcast, Todd & Matt.
Todd Anderson: Nice to be back, Peter.
Matt Murnane: Hey, Peter, thanks for having me.
Peter: Alright. So, Todd, I mean, I know that you probably don’t need much of an intro to most of the regular listeners on the new show every week, you’ve got your own podcast. For the two people listening who don’t know who you are, why don’t you just give a quick intro.
Todd: Todd Anderson, the Chief Content Officer at Fintech Nexus. As Peter mentioned, I also have my own podcast called PitchIt. I run our PitchIt Startups and a lot of out startup-focused programs and need anything that’s content-related, whether that be in-person at our large-scale events, like we’ll be talking about today, or digital that you’ll see on webinars and other digital property that we have. So, great to be on again, Peter, and looking forward to talking about our upcoming USA show.
Peter: You bet. And Matt, first time on the Preview Show so great to have you on. Why don’t you just tell the listeners what you do.
Matt: Sure thing. So, I am Matt Murnane, I am the Chief Experience Officer at Fintech Nexus and I pretty much lead all things operations and experience from the way we register for events all the way through everything that happens in-person and then all the way through moving out and leaving our events and I am super excited to be on this so thanks again, Peter.
Peter: Alright. No, great to have you. So, when you’re entering the events and when you’re going into the Keynote Hall, into the Expo Hall, just know that that’s Matt’s baby, he’s made it look extra special just for you.
Todd: If you see people on stilts, that is Matt’s specialty.
Todd: Loves people on stilts.
Peter: Yes, yes, and sometimes covered with greenery. If you were at the show last year, you saw the people on stilts covered in greenery which was a big hit, by the way. Anyway, we’re going to talk about the different components of the event. Obviously, it’s back at the Javits Center, the same place it was last year and Matt, I want to turn to you first and just talk about sort of……… one of the things that people come to our events to see are all the different companies that are representing the industry in our Expo Floor. So, why don’t you just tell us a little bit about what that’s going to look like.
Matt: If you were at the show last year, we are back in the same halls in the Javits Center down on Level1 and we’ve got around 200 sponsors, I’d say, each having booths that are ……we’re really excited about it this year. Every year, we always try to level up everything we do, and I think our sponsors are in line with that. So, as we’ve been planning some of those booths and activations along with our sponsoring companies, I know that both we, as Fintech Nexus and our sponsoring companies and partners, have a lot of exciting things planned for the Expo Hall this year.
Peter: Alright, yes, indeed. So, I want to move on just to content, Todd. You and I have been working on this agenda now for months, why don’t you explain how the content is going to work during the event.
Todd: As you’ve probably seen in years past, there’ll be a number of staple offerings that we’re offering with content and you’ll also see some newer things that we’re doing this year that you’ll hear a little bit more about later as we continue through the show here, but ultimately think of content in kind of different blocks. You know, when you start the show at 9:00 am, we’ll have our first Keynote Block and then we take a short walk to get a coffee or a quick break and then we start the tracks and that goes to lunchtime.
So, it’s kick-off with Keynotes then we go to the tracks, we hit lunch and then similar style in the afternoon, you come back from lunch, go to the Keynotes, then you go to the tracks. And so, that’s kind of the conceptually when you think about it, it’s done in blocks so you can do meetings then you can go back to a block of content. And so, Day Two and Day One are set up the exact same way and then as we’ll talk about a bit later, we’ll tell you where PitchIt will be, we also have a workshop this year and our first 2-day track which we’ll dive into a bit more, but, ultimately, the content times align along those blocks.
Peter: Okay. And one of the things that people come to Fintech Nexus for and have done over the years is our one-on-one networking experience. So, Matt, why don’t you tell us where that is, how it works, how people can start, how they can get involved in the networking.
Matt: We’re really excited about our networking this year, we always are, but something brand new for us for our USA show is we have a new app, it is Fintech Nexus Events in the App Store. The thing that kind of sets this one apart from years past is our AI is a lot stronger. How you register for the event and self-identify during that registration process is factored into the meetings that you’ll be suggested when you log into the networking app, but, additionally, how you behave. So, if you are matching with more companies that you might have not realized that you wanted to match with during that registration process, it will account for that and start pushing some of those suggestions to the top of your list.
So, we think it will result in a lot stronger one-on-one meetings and then all of those meetings will take place in our One-to-One Networking Zone which is in the center of the Expo Hall and it’s really kind of like that electrifying energy component to our Expo and I like to think of it as the heartbeat of our show, the energy really just radiates out of there. Also new for networking is if you’re having any meetings with a VIP-hosted attendee, those meetings will automatically designate to the VIP Meetings Lounge, we’ve never done that before, it was always a scramble trying to figure out where your meetings were going to be. This year, it’s going to be super clear whether you’re meeting at the One-to-One Networking Lounge at Table 55 or the VIP Lounge so there should be a lot more kind of clear, fluid ways of navigating the floor as well.
Peter: Well, speaking of the VIP Meetings Lounge, Todd, why don’t you explain what that is and what we’re actually doing there.
Todd: Sure, and I think a special thank you to the VIP team is in order because this year we actually have more VIP attendees than we’ve ever had before and these are made up of banks, credit unions and both debt & equity investors. And so, these are the types of attendees, that our sponsors and others really want to meet with, these are the innovation people at banks, the big debt investors that lenders might be looking for or these days, especially when people are, in seeking capital as much as they are and, you know, fundraising is not as robust as it might have been the couple of years.
There’s also a lot of VCs in that program as well and so Danielle and her team have done a great job at compiling this group and really this is where Matt mentioned where it is on the floor. This is where a lot of our sponsors get, you know, the specialized meetings and it’s a place that you can talk to someone in these types of organizations and get a real potential partnership or real connection, you know made, that might be a bit deeper than some of the other one-on-one type meetings at the event.
And so, it’s a great opportunity if you’re a sponsor or in future if you’re looking to upsell to a type of inventory that you really could look at and say wow, we made connections to these X amount of people. Danielle and her team do a great job at compiling the right people to bring to the event and they’ve done it better this year than they ever have before.
Peter: Indeed, I completely agree with that, Todd. So, Matt, I want to turn back to you because we have lots of fun things that are going to be happening at the event this year so why don’t you tell us about some of the parties that are organized and some of the experiences that you have planned.
Matt: The event, while it technically kicks off on May 10th, everything really starts on May 9th. For anybody that’s traveling to New York, there are some additional activities that people can partake in and really just get that networking started early. We’ve got a walking tour through New York experiencing all local bites and cocktails, we are doing a box at the Yankee game again that was really popular last year, we’re really excited about it again this year. And then on the night of the 9th, we’ve got a VIP Welcome Reception that is going to take place at the Edition Hotel in Times Square and that starts at 6:00 pm, I believe, sponsored by Allen & Overy.
We kick our days off on May 10th & 11th with morning yoga, that’s right around the corner from our hotel blocks, really nice way to start the day off on a healthy note. We’ve got a ton of happy hours on the floor at the Javits Center and then we have our Day One Wrap Party which is……I’m really excited about this one. It’s taking place on the Flight Deck of the Intrepid and that is sponsored by BHG, we’re really excited to be working with them again on their party. And then we have the After Party at the Knickerbocker Rooftop and that one is sponsored by Argyle. So, lots of stuff happening, definitely no shortage of networking, receptions, and cocktails.
Peter: Yeah. If you haven’t been to the Intrepid, this is going to be a great opportunity for you, it is spectacular, they’ve got a space shuttle inside the Intrepid, I don’t know how they could have got it in there, but they did. And they’ve got all kinds of planes that were, used to fly, and we’ll be up on the Flight Deck, right, there’ll be food and everything, I presume. I presume they have rain kind of Plan B, right, if it’s raining?
Matt: There definitely is a Plan B, it will take place still on the Intrepid, but we put in a good word, we should have good weather that night. (Peter laughs)
Todd: (laughs) Lots of stilts then.
Matt: There actually won’t be any stilts this year, I feel like I had to switch it up.
Peter: You’ve disappointed us, it’s okay (laughing). Okay, moving on, you touched on it, Todd, let’s talk about PitchIt. We had a fantastic crop of applications this year for our startup competition, why don’t you tell us what’s going on there.
Todd: If you look at the totality of applications, it’s probably our strongest group yet, we’ve had over a hundred applicants. The way we see PitchIt, and it’s a personal passion for me, is a way to bring startups that are just hitting, whether their prototype is made and they’re just going out to raise money or they’re just about to start scaling, it’s the way to bring them into the event in a unique and interesting way. And so, you know, we’ll have the semi-finals this week, which is actually April 26th & 27th, depending on when you might be listening to this episode and then the finals will be May 11th and in all three of these, Semi-Final One, Semi-Final Two and the finals, you’ll see eight companies that’ll pitch.
The pitches are short and sweet, they’re seven minutes each and then they interact with our judges. The judges come from, you know, Citi Ventures, JAM Fintop, CMFG Ventures and many, many others, Team8, and a bunch of other great VCs that have joined us again this year to be judges. But it’s a way to bring startups to the ecosystem. It’s a real great opportunity if you’re earlier or if you’ve raised a little bit of capital and like you can probably hear my voice, I love doing this competition, it’s also the name of the podcast that I run and I love talking to startups and early-stage investors and it’s a way for us to feature them and bring them to the overall Fintech Nexus Community.
Peter: This is a way for you to kind of find the success stories of tomorrow, and we’ve had on that PitchIt stage many, many successful fintechs that are now household names within fintech and doing really well. So, I find that it’s a great window into what…. even just going through the applications, looking at them is a great window into what is hot in fintech right now and you see some of the hottest companies. Anyway, Matt, want to talk about Women in Fintech, you know, we have our intrepid colleague, Joy Schwartz, has run this program now for many years, tell us a little bit about what’s going on there.
Matt: Yeah, hats off to Joy for this, for sure. We are really excited to be partnering with Deloitte again on this component of the program. So, it will be on Day One, May 10th, in the same area as all of the breakout tracks and we’re working it a little different this year. So, in years past, we’ve had a very separate networking component to the lunch and learn we had panelists on. This year we’re kind of combining it to be a full lunch and learn and there’s the networking woven into the overall experience. Again, we’re just really excited to be working with Deloitte on this, I know we’ve just released the panelists for that as well not too long ago, so we’ve got a great line-up there.
Peter: Yeah, as always. I mean, I talked to some of the women coming out of that, it’s the highlight of the event for many of the people in this room because it’s, let’s face it, fintech is still a male-dominated industry and this is great for all the women to gather and really build new connections, it’s a great program.
Anyway. I want to talk. go back to the agenda. As Todd mentioned, we have keynotes, it’s a block of keynotes of each day, but, Todd, why don’t you talk about the tracks, maybe you could lay out the different topics that we’re covering, the different tracks that we’re going to be covering over the two days so people that are coming can really get a sense of the types of topics we’ll be covering.
Todd: Yeah. I think a good thing to mention here also, and I touched on it in the opening you know when we were kind of giving a high-level look, you know, at the event. This year’s tracks, there’s a few wrinkles and a few new features that we’ve done this year, we always try to mix it up, we always try to find whether or not we’re making sure we’re covering the newest topic or, you know, what’s the big theme, how do we cover that maybe in a bigger way?
So, this year for the first time ever, you know, we’ve done what we are calling a Super Track in many ways which is, you know, the Fraud Fight Club, obviously, everyone knows how imperative it is to fight against fraud. And so, what you’ll see during the two days, and this is sponsored by Mastercard, of course, you’ll see all different topics from synthetic ID fraud, to, you know, overall, kind of how to put together a fraud department and many others, you know, lots of great speakers in there from the Mastercards of the world to some of the biggest banks as well so that covers the Super Track.
And then with that, we also have our staple of tracks, digital bank, credit & underwriting, financial health & inclusion, what we call the future of fintech or creating the system of the future, payments, you know, small business lending, small business fintech, consumer lending, obviously, regulation and many, many more.
The other thing I wanted to highlight, for the first time we’re doing kind of two different areas of the event is we have a workshop for community banks and credit unions. That workshop will have a closed-door element to it and that will be in the morning, there’ll be some closed-door demos and well only allow in credit unions and community banks and, in the afternoon, it’ll serve similar to some of the other tracks you see there. So, that’s first time ever, we’re including that on the agenda.
Peter: Which day is that, Todd?
Todd: And that’s going to be Day Two, May 11th and then also for the first time, you know, the Startups Stage on the Expo Floor. Obviously, we talked about PitchIt which is where this takes place, the Innovation Zone, but what we’re also be doing there for the first time is we’re going to have a few panels that look at some emerging ecosystems like Latin America and the Caribbean, so we’ll have a panel there talking about that emerging area of fintech as well as asking some experts.
We have put together a really interesting panel of experts and content producers across fintech and so we want you to come, we want you to ask them question. And so, what you’ll see, if you back up a little bit, you’ll see a Super Track, you’ll see a workshop, you’ll see our staple of tracks and you’ll also see some innovative content on the Expo Floor for earlier stage companies or earlier stage ecosystems. And so, you know, we really cover the entirety of fintech and digital banking at one event.
Peter: Why don’t you explain how people will find these tracks, tell us a little bit about the layout. When someone exits Registration, how do they get into everything?
Matt: So, the flow of the event is very similar to what we’ve done in the past, last year, I should say, when we were at Javits. Once you exit Registration, you take the escalators downstairs, one level and you’re in the Expo Hall. That is really kind of the start and finish of our event so when you walk through Expo, you know, obviously networking is in the middle of that, we’ve got all of our catering in there. As Todd mentioned, we have the Innovation Zone where all of the startups will be in that stage for startups.
And then we also have Inspiration Point in the Expo Hall which is a podcast theater and then there’s one main avenue that kind of connects the entire event. Once you hit that avenue in the middle of our show floor, if you take that road down, you’ll hit the Keynote Hall first and after the Keynote Hall you hit the tracks and the special events. So, that closed door workshop that Todd mentioned, Women In Fintech, the Fraud Fight Club and all of the traditional tracks will be in that last hall. But, again, it’s all connected so we’ve got a ton of food & beverage this year which is also being re-designed to something new that we’ve never done and just to make it more accessible and experiential so there really is no reason to leave Javits once you’re in there other than to hit our parties at night.
Peter: Yes, yes, you can’t sleep at the Javits Center that’s not allowed. Okay, I want to talk about the keynotes, I’m going to share some of the things that I’m looking forward to. Todd, I’d like you to do the same, but on the keynote stage we’re kicking off the event, I’m actually going to be interviewing Stephanie Cohen with Goldman Sachs. She is one of the leaders there at this venerable investment bank/fintech company because they’ve been doing so much in fintech recently so we’re going to be kicking off with her.
Then Nigel Morris is going to be doing a really fascinating presentation. By the time this is actually going to be published after this is public so I can say it is that they’ve done a paper or a study with the Boston Consulting Group on the future of fintech and it is not just sort of an airy-fairy kind of this is what we think is going to happen, this is actual data they have got. They have really gone and looked at the whole world and this is their predictions as far as revenue, different regions of the world, it’s definitely a session not to miss and that’s coming up right after Stephanie Cohen.
And then we just announced that Rohit Chopra, the Director of the CFPB, he is going to be anchoring our 2nd afternoon, yes, I’ve got that right am I, Todd?
Peter: So, he’s going to be anchoring the 2nd afternoon.
Todd: Kick-off to the 2nd afternoon.
Peter: Yeah, the kick-off, the kick-off to the 2nd afternoon. So, he’s probably the most important regulator for fintech companies and he will be speaking live at the event in New York. And so, Matt, I want to turn to you and talk about awards because we’re doing the awards a little bit differently this year. This is I think the 6th year we’ve done awards and so tell us a little bit about what’s planned there.
Matt: We’re really excited about this as every year we’ve had hundreds of nominations for the awards. So, what we’re doing differently this year is we’re actually incorporating it into our 2-day event at the Javits Center rather than kind of a standalone event. By doing this, we’re able to really include everybody who wants to participate who’s going to be at our event. It’s going to take place the morning of May 10th from our Keynote Stage which is actually one of……I’m so proud of that stage, I love the partners we work with on there so I’m really excited to be producing some content for that stage specific to the awards. I think it’s just a really good way for us, as an industry, to celebrate our peers in the achievements over the last year so join us on that Keynote Stage.
Peter: Yeah, yeah, and that is the Keynote Stage on the morning of Day One, we’re going to end it with announcing all of the awards winners. So, Todd, I want to turn to you, talk about some of the keynotes that you’re most looking forward to.
Todd: I think the first thing to reference on the Keynote Stage is I think it’s 12 of 14 keynote slots are either a CEO or a C-level person or like the Director of the CFPB. I mean, the quality of the line-up, I mean, go across CEO, CEO Founder & CEO, CEO, CEO Founder & CEO. Probably our across-the-board, our best and our most senior Keynote Stage that we’ve ever put together and two, in particular, that I think are super interesting this year are two new CEOs.
They’ve just come in the role since the start of 2023 and that is Liza Landsman of Stash. She’s taken over for Brandon Krieg who founded and was CEO, now he’s moving to a different area in terms of business development and Liza steps in. She’s a great, seasoned executive prior to Stash, she was at NEA and a Partner there and so she’s going to be talking with a VC partner and one of the board members at Stash, talking about investing for the 99% which is most of us, you know, we don’t get to be in that 1% and so it’ll be a fascinating conversation.
And then, also Simon Khalaf of Marqeta. You know, Jason Gardner has founded and led Marqeta for a very long time and now we have Simon step in, and I think you’ll get a really fresh and new perspective on one of the best fintech companies, I’d say, in the world and you’ll hear, you know, a really interesting vision for kind of what’s next for Marqeta. And then, we also have, you know, Mike Cagney and Caitlin Long talking about the tussle right now going on with crypto and the regulators amongst many, many others, Mastercard on the Keynote Stage, BHG on the Keynote Stage.
So, we have really, really a topnotch stage, not only for the keynotes but all across the agenda and I know this is Peter’s podcast, I’ll give him a shameless plug. It’s been great putting together another stellar line-up of speakers, it takes a while to get this done and we do see the light at the end of the tunnel, and we are very proud of what we’ve produced.
Peter: Yeah, it’s been great the way it has come together, it’s such a huge amount of work. I mean, the Fintech Nexus staff have been working day and night now for many, many months putting this event together. So, with that, we can just close with …I’d love to kind of, Matt, I’m going to put you on the spot here, give us sort of your closing commentary, what’s exciting, what are you most excited about for this year’s event?
Matt: Personally, I love to experience all of our attendees’ and our sponsors’ interactions, I just love bringing everybody in person and feeling that energy of idea exchange or transaction or just kind of watching people, especially like watching people watch keynote speakers or session speakers and seeing like them take notes or their eyes light up when they are hearing something insightful, I think ,that’s really special for me to watch from the background. So, really excited about that and I think I’m just excited after, you know, another year of hard work and planning this one, seeing it through so excited for May 10th.
Peter: Indeed. Well, Todd, closing comments from you, what’s exciting?
Todd: There’s a lot of unease in the market today and I think what you’ll see and what you’ll hear is fintech has a bright future, not only with, you know, the technology innovation but also with a lot of the people that are running these companies. So, I think you take away from yes, there might be funding issues right now or there’s other stuff going on with the overall economy but if you listen, talk to people, they’re extremely pumped up for what they’re still building and what the future holds. So, you know, I think walking away from the event, knowing that there’s just so much to do still all across financial services, you know, there’s still a lot to take from it, regardless of kind of where we are maybe economically right now.
Peter: Yeah, yeah. If you’re listening to this and still haven’t bought your ticket, well congratulations, you’ve made it through the whole episode. Now, it’s time to go buy your ticket, we actually are selling tickets right up until the day of so you can literally walk into the Javits Center on Wednesday, May 10th and purchase a ticket to the event. Go to fintechnexus.com, find out more, you can view the whole agenda, see some of the companies that are coming, and all the different components of the event so hope you found that interesting and useful. Thank you, Todd, thank you, Matt, great to chat with you guys and be seeing you May 10th and 11th in New York City.
I hope you enjoyed the show, thank you so much for listening. Please go ahead and give the show a review on the podcast platform of your choice and go tell your friends and colleagues about it.
Anyway, on that note, I will sign off. I very much appreciate you listening and I’ll catch you next time. Bye.
Peter Renton is the chairman and co-founder of Fintech Nexus, the world’s first and largest digital media and events company focused on fintech. Peter has been writing about fintech since 2010 and he is the author and creator of the Fintech One-on-One Podcast, the first and longest-running fintech interview series. Peter has been interviewed by the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, The New York Times, CNBC, CNN, Fortune, NPR, Fox Business News, the Financial Times, and dozens of other publications.