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UK Fintech boards lack AI skills and diversity




New report from EY and Innovate Finance shows UK fintech firm boards are drivers of sustainable growth, but lack essential skills and risk group think due to a lack of diversity

The UK’s FinTech boards play a vital leadership role in driving long-term growth and innovation, according to a new report by EY and Innovate Finance.
Titled Setting the pace or keeping up – are FinTech boards future-fit?, the report shows many are missing skills and experience perceived as crucial and boardroom gender diversity continues to challenge.

The report comprises market research, roundtable interviews with over 40 FinTech CEOs and Chairs, and a pulse survey conducted with 38 executive and non-executive directors of FinTech firms.

Gaps in AI and fundraising skills at board level require attention

The findings identify a skills gap within FinTechs, with almost half of survey respondents (47%) claiming their board does not have the requisite level of GenAI expertise.

In addition, only 42% believe their board has the necessary skills in fundraising, of which 30% say this is the biggest single gap on their board. However, to help address this, 34% of respondents are in the process of hiring new talent and 21% are engaged in upskilling and training current board members.

Gender diversity on UK FinTech boards is lagging

The research also finds that the UK’s top 50 FinTechs currently record just 22% female representation on average at board level, falling below the FCA’s minimum 40% female board representation and could hold back future growth.

In addition, 37% of those surveyed have no women sitting on their boards, and just 3% report an equal or better ratio of female to male board members at present.

“The core focus of UK FinTechs is often on achieving short-term growth and rapid innovation as they grow and scale. However, CEOs of UK FinTechs emphatically told us that long-term advice and strategic guidance from their boards – underpinned by diverse skills, perspectives and ideas – is vital to the ultimate success of their firms,” says Anita Kimber, UK Partner and FinTech Policy and Ecosystem Leader at EY.

“While the nature, role and construct of boards naturally evolve over the life cycle of a FinTech, in all phases of growth, board members are most effective if they collectively hold a diverse and deep understanding of customer needs and market dynamics.

Kimber notes this also helps as they advise and support the CEO to drive organisational purpose, deliver financial results, achieve good customer outcomes and meet regulatory standards.

“Our research finds without doubt that boards are key to UK FinTechs achieving scalable and sustainable growth, and going one step further, that diversity of gender, skills and backgrounds can represent the difference between success and unrealised potential,” she says.

“The UK is home to a world-leading FinTech sector, and there is much to lose if firms do not prioritise strategic guidance, purpose and diversity of all kinds.”

Board objectives and delivery on customer service and ESG

While the report finds that 66% of FinTech board members feel their firm’s purpose is embedded into their organisation, it also finds there is some misalignment between FinTech objectives and the delivery of those priorities.

Two-thirds (66%) of survey respondents cite customer engagement and service as a key priority, but only 19% believe they are delivering this effectively. While less stark, 78% of respondents rank ESG as an important priority, but only 64% believe current delivery is effective.

Strategic, long-term guidance from boards is key to effectiveness

The report finds that the majority of boards’ time should be spent focusing on strategic, forward-looking plans, while also carefully balancing the needs of investors and other stakeholders.

FinTech CEOs and Chairs surveyed indicated that the structure of the board is critical to delivering insightful guidance, and should comprise members with a diverse range of skills and experience.

Report recommendations to help FinTechs accelerate progress:

  • Appoint a dedicated Consumer Duty champion within the board – this must be a director who understands the regulatory requirements and the customer perspective
  • Create a strategic board-level focus on ‘purpose’ to positively influence activity, strengthen culture and attract customers and investors
  • Reset the tone from the top on diversity to promote broader thinking, widen perspectives, and achieve growth
  • Make AI a core business focus and a growth driver

“Since 2008, the FinTech sector has played a crucial role in democratising financial services. Today, 8 out of 10 adults in the UK are now using at least one FinTech tool on a regular basis,” says Janine Hirt, CEO at Innovate Finance.

“Nearly 60% of all SME lending done across the UK is being done by FinTechs, challenger banks, or alternative lenders and the UK boasts 10% of global FinTech market share. And despite a global downturn in investment, UK FinTech continues to attract more investment than all European countries combined.

“To ensure UK FinTech continues to grow from strength-to-strength, however, we believe it is important that startups begin to build effective boards from the beginning of their scaling journey, and continue to prioritise board effectiveness and diversity. This is one reason we are delighted to partner with EY on this important research confirming how critical FinTech boards are for sustainable growth.

“This unique report identifies what the best practices are for building and managing effective boards’ and includes insightful perspectives and recommendations from industry experts. With this report we hope to make a difference in the ecosystem and shed some light on board effectiveness to benefit FinTech businesses, their founders, investors and consumers to create a more inclusive and more transparent sector for all.”


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AXA named as an Official Partner of UEFA Women’s EURO 2025




AXA has proudly announced its support for the UEFA Women’s EURO 2025 as an Official Partner, furthering its sponsorship programme initiated in 2020. The prestigious event will take place in Switzerland from July 2 to 27, 2025.

Commitment to Women’s Football

This partnership underscores AXA’s dedication to promoting women’s football, building on its long-term support for the sport. Since 2020, AXA has been the main sponsor of the AXA Women’s Super League and the AXA Women’s Cup in Switzerland. By investing in women’s football, AXA aims to bolster women’s sports and promote its brand ethos, “Know You Can,” encouraging self-belief among its customers.

Statements from AXA Leaders

Fabrizio Petrillo, CEO of AXA Switzerland, expressed his enthusiasm, saying, “I’m so excited to support UEFA Women’s EURO 2025 together with other European AXA companies as a main sponsor. We are sending a strong signal and making a contribution to ensure that the players and fans can experience a great event and further strengthen women’s football. I’m looking forward to a fantastic summer of football in 2025!”

Volunteering Opportunities

The partnership includes more than just financial support. AXA employees will have the opportunity to volunteer during the tournament as part of the UEFA Women’s EURO 2025 Volunteer Programme, playing a crucial role in the event’s success.

Guy-Laurent Epstein, UEFA Marketing Director, commented, “AXA is a dedicated supporter of women’s football in Switzerland, so we are thrilled to partner with them for what will be an unforgettable UEFA Women’s EURO 2025. We look forward to working together to make this the can’t-miss event of next summer while also strengthening women’s football in the host country and throughout Europe.”

Enhancing Visibility for Female Players

Andreea Prange, Head of Customer Experience & Strategy at AXA Switzerland, added, “Promoting women’s football is a topic I hold dear to my heart. That’s why I’m delighted that AXA, as a partner of the UEFA Women’s EURO 2025, is also committed to increasing the visibility of female players at the international level.”

Tournament Details

Doris Keller, Tournament Director of UEFA Women’s EURO 2025, stated, “AXA, a long-time supporter and partner of women’s football in Switzerland and globally, is a perfect fit to become a global partner of UEFA Women’s EURO 2025. We look forward to collaborating with AXA on the UEFA Women’s EURO 2025 Volunteer Programme, as the 2,500 volunteers will play a highly essential and valuable role throughout the tournament welcoming everyone to the host country.”

The UEFA Women’s EURO 2025 will feature 16 teams competing in eight Swiss cities, attracting an estimated 500 million viewers worldwide and offering over 700,000 tickets for fans to attend the matches live.

Partnership Duration

The partnership between AXA and UEFA will continue until the end of August 2025. The financial terms of the sponsorship remain confidential.


The post AXA named as an Official Partner of UEFA Women’s EURO 2025 appeared first on HIPTHER Alerts.

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Lucinity Wins the Microsoft Partner Awards for 2024 for Partner of the Year – Iceland and Sustainability and Social Impact



REYKJAVÍK, Iceland, May 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Lucinity, a leading AI company for financial crime prevention, won two awards at the Microsoft Partner Awards for 2024, including Partner of the Year – Iceland and Sustainability and Social Impact, highlighting Lucinity’s innovations and contribution to positive societal change. 

“Congratulations to Lucinity for being recognized as the Partner of the Year – Iceland 2024! Lucinity is leading digital transformation and delivering innovative products in their domain,” says Microsoft’s leadership.

For the past year, they have played a key role with their offerings, skilled resources, and their ability to drive change and innovative solutions both locally in Iceland and across the globe. Lucinity has had significant social impact and growth while supporting our joint customers in their AI-transformation journeys.”

In June 2023, Lucinity launched the world’s first copilot for FinCrime prevention powered by Microsoft Azure OpenAI called Luci. Luci stands out in the financial services industry with specialized skills for FinCrime prevention such as adverse media checks, case analysis, and SAR writing. 

Built on the robust and scalable Microsoft Azure platform, Lucinity offers customers a trusted SaaS product. Additionally, Lucinity’s presence on the Microsoft Azure Marketplace allows companies to leverage their Microsoft Azure credits to access the platform. 

The seamless integration with Microsoft’s Azure stack has enabled Lucinity to implement advanced AI capabilities, fostering rapid innovation and enabling banks and fintech companies to utilize AI securely and audibly. Furthermore, Luci significantly reduces investigation times from 2.5 hours to just 25 minutes, saving Tier 1 banks an estimated $25 million annually.

Guðmundur Kristjánsson (GK)Lucinity’s Founder and CEO comments, “These awards are a testament to the strength and reliability of our solutions, made possible by our strategic partnership with Microsoft. Utilizing Microsoft Azure, we have been able to drive rapid innovation and create a robust, scalable platform that meets the rigorous requirements of compliance teams.” 

On the Sustainability and Social Impact Partner Award, Microsoft says, “Lucinity, with their innovative AI solutions, has really tried to combat this huge global challenge. They use ‘Human AI’ to enhance financial crime prevention, combining AI with human expertise for efficient, user-friendly solutions. Additionally, Lucinity has developed a tool called Luci, an AI-powered copilot that helps transform financial crime prevention from a process that took hours to one that takes minutes.”



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2024 Hengqin Global Investment Promotion Conference Kicks Off



HENGQIN, China, May 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — The Hengqin 2024 Global Investment Promotion Conference and sharing sessions opened on 26 May. Liu Xianfa, Commissioner of China’s Foreign Ministry in the Macao SAR; Lei Wai Nong, Director of the Executive Committee of the Guangdong-Macao In-Depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin (hereinafter referred to as the “Cooperation Zone”); Huang Zhihao, Deputy Secretary of the CPC Zhuhai Municipal Committee and Mayor of Zhuhai; Nie Xinping, Fu Yongge, Su Kun, Deputy Directors of the Executive Committee of the Guangdong-Macao In-Depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin attended the event. It also attracted more than 1,000 investors from Macao’s business associations and renowned enterprises at home and abroad. Guests attending the event came from 42 countries and regions, including Portugal, Brazil, Singapore and Malaysia, and the scale of participation was greatly enlarged compared with that of last year.

Lei Wai Nong said in his speech that Hengqin is currently entering into its “prime time” of trade and investment opportunities. He invited all entrepreneurs from home and abroad to invest in Hengqin and embrace the new development opportunities together.

Su Kun introduced the open investment environment of the Cooperation Zone and highlighted that the four new industries have seen significant progress and new development opportunities since the implementation of tier-specific management.

The event featured presentations on investment and development in Hengqin by representatives of Wisewave (Zhuhai) Technology Co., Ltd. and Airbus Helicopters China.

Nine research experts, scholars, and entrepreneurs from Macao and Hengqin have been invited to serve as “Ambassadors for Hengqin”. Together with six “Advocates for Hengqin” they are expected to promote Hengqin to the world. The video series “Ambassadors for Hengqin” will be rolled out in June.

Highlights of this year’s conference included an exhibition on the four new industries in the Cooperation Zone, showcasing the fruits of development in recent years. As of the end of the event on 26 May, more than 69,000 audience watched the online broadcasts.

On 27 May, a series of sharing sessions were held for in-depth discussions on integrated circuits, traditional Chinese medicine, branded industries, modern finance, cultural tourism, conventions and exhibitions, trade, and cross-border e-commerce, with the aim of building a bridge for dialogue and cooperation in these industries. 

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