Is crypto fintech?
It’s a question many have asked. But when Leah Callon-Butler, director of Emfarsis and Coindesk columnist, asked this question in here favorite discussion group forums, the answers were… complicated.
The answers range from philosphical (Fintech is a sector, crypto is a discipline), to structural (there is a subset of crypto which is fintech, but not all crypto is fintech), and even categorical (Bitcoin is the first real new financial technology).
Leah highlighted this question in her Coindesk article entitled, “Is Crypto Fintech? It Depends Who You Ask,” with inputs from the Cambridge Center for Alternative Finance (CCAF), whose cryptocurrency and blockchain lead Apolline Blandin believes “..a crypto-asset perfectly fits its definition of alternative finance as a monetary system emerging outside the traditional one.”
For Leah, the word fintech has become “about as impact as other overworked, misused words like disruption and innovation. With this in mind, the CCAF developed a taxonomy guide identifying 15 verticals, 11 subsets, and 102 possible categories of financial services outside the traditional sector, which include classifications like digital lending, remittance, mobile payments, cryptocurrency, and blockchain.
“I think a lot of people hear the buzzword and silo it,” said Tania Ziegler, CCAF’s Lead in Global Alternative Finance Benchmarking, about the term crypto. “But we’ve got crypto asset exchanges, market provisioning, digital custody and consensus services – so that’s effectively four different overarching verticles where a crypto could live.”