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News and advice                       
February 2013
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IN THIS ISSUE:

Letter from the President

Optimistic 2013 Forecast for Fintech Companies

FinTech Media Update

Digital Spending Increasing

Letter from the PresidentScott 2

It’s a promising year for FinTech vendors with the country’s measured climb out of the financial crisis. Established and emerging technologies will grow in 2013 with banks of all sizes, and we are seeing increased momentum and investment within the industry. If you haven't seen it, check out Bankers as Buyers at http://tinyurl.com/arym69x
 
We have several industry meetings coming up in February and March, namely, MBA’s National Mortgage Servicing Conference & Expo in Dallas, CUNA’s Government Affairs Conference in Washington D.C., BAI Payments Connect Conference and Expo in Phoenix as well as ICBA’s National Convention in Las Vegas. We hope to see you at one of these events.
 
Best regards,
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Scott Mills
Kerry Curry is now editor of REO Insider. She came from the Dallas Business Journal.
 
Tony Garritano is no longer at SourceMedia (Mortgage Technology magazine, etc.)
 
And with a heavy heart, we share that Karen Krebsbach, former Executive Editor at U.S. Banker, passed away July 19, 2010 after a battle with breast cancer. Kerry Curry is now editor of REO Insider. She came from the Dallas Business Journal.
 
Tony Garritano is no longer at SourceMedia (Mortgage Technology magazine, etc.)
 
And with a heavy heart, we share that Karen Krebsbach, former Executive Editor at U.S. Ba
Optimistic 2013 Forecast for FinTech Companies
By William Mills III, CEO, William Mills AgencyWM3 pic 2

2013 marks my 30th year at the agency as well as my 30th year working with financial technology entrepreneurs and business owners. Over the course of these three decades, I’ve witnessed first hand three eras of sustained growth in the financial industry and the devastating effects of their eventual collapse.  

I believe the next five years are going to be some of the most interesting, exciting and prosperous times for innovative financial technology companies.

George Santayana wrote,"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it," but the word condemned makes you believe everything was bad. In the past 30 years, there have been three major economic downturns, but all three were preceded by 5 to 7 years of sustained economic growth where my friends in financial technology made many fortunes. Two clients sold their companies for millions of dollars and left our industry to study theology, and one former FinTech president is now a church pastor.

Remember the 1980s? The Reagan Years, yuppies, the movie “Wall Street” or the book Barbarians at the Gate about the RJR Nabisco leveraged buyout? Until the stock market crash of 1987 these were heady times and it was during this era that the regional bank data center gave way to national FinTech companies (like Fiserv) as well as affordable in-house bank technology for any size financial institution (such as Jack Henry & Associates). Banking, real estate and technology all grew until the 1987 stock market crash as well as the giant savings and loan crisis that resulted in more than 1,000 U.S. financial institutions closing their doors.

At the end of the subsequent years of malaise, almost at the same time, Moore’s Law was looking like a reality and computing power expanded at a faster and faster rate. This computing power coupled with the world-wide adoption of an open electronic network we now call “The Internet,” transformed our lives.

The early 1990s was the beginning of the “dot com” days where venture capital firms threw money at kids in college with only an idea (anyone remember Tripp Rackley’s first venture?). With increased investment in solving the Y2K non-crisis, all types of businesses boomed until the one-two punch of the dot com crash and the terrorist attacks of 9/11.

After the crash, countless Americans fled the stock market never to return. The prevailing view, even one held by Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorganChase, was that housing (and land) prices would always go up. The unlimited worldwide secondary market was like oxygen on a fire fueling the real estate bubble until it burst with a vengeance. Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Federal Reserve System, told the FCIC, “I honestly believe that September and October of 2008 was the worst financial crisis in global history, including the Great Depression.”  

So, here we are five years later. Why am I so optimistic? It’s because I’ve lived through the booms and busts and I have read the signs.

First, there is tremendous pent-up demand for new financial technology, especially as it relates to payments. Ten years ago we may not have heard of PayPal, but today it’s found in the checkout aisle at your local Home Depot. Second, there are trillions of investment dollars sitting on the sidelines and these money managers are tired of waiting. They will be investing heavily in emerging technologies but more importantly SAAS and cloud-based offerings because of their predictable business models. Third, mobile is the new PC. More and more people, young and old alike, WANT to do business (and banking) on their smartphone or tablet. It’s the “Wild West” all over again except this time consumers are walking around with devices that are smarter than the mainframe computers banks used 30 years ago.

In closing, smart FinTech entrepreneurs will study the past and learn from it. Few public companies currently invest in pure research and development, so in order to grow, the larger players will find and buy truly innovative financial technology start ups for years to come.
FinTech Media Updates  
  • Bank Technology News will exist as supplements in American Banker throughout the year rather than a print magazine. Its daily e-newsletters will continue as normal.
     
  • Jeanine Skowronski is the new BankThink editor at American Banker
     
  • The MSN Bulletin has gone from a weekly e-newsletter to daily, just like the other mortgage brands of National Mortgage News and Origination News.
  • SourceMedia’s The Fraud Report and Managing REO are no longer being published.
     
  • Paul Muolo left SourceMedia and has joined Inside Mortgage Finance, which now has a daily online briefing.

Digital Spending Increasing

Digital SpendingThe December 31, 2012 edition of Advertising Age took a look at overall ad spending for the past year and its projection for the next few years. The forecast for Internet advertising is projected to reach $36.2 billion in 2013. ZenithOptimedia’s 2012 forecast shows the Internet surpassing newspapers and becoming the second largest ad medium in the U.S., behind television.

In the list of top 20 U.S. advertisers, there were two from the financial industry, JPMorgan Chase ranked at #6 and Bank of America ranked at #17. In 2011, for Internet advertising alone, JP Morgan Chase spent $72.9 million, and Bank of America spent $109.6 million.

These statistics from Advertising Age show that digital ad spending is on the rise. The digital advertising category includes contextual ads, banner ads, blogs, social network advertising, email marketing, SEO, pay per click, and video. William Mills Agency offers all of these services and would like to highlight our most recently enhanced service—Visbyte Videos.

Videos are becoming a preferred means of marketing within FinTech and B2B companies. People have shorter attention spans, less time to gather information and want things quickly. Video marketing will engage your financial industry audience and increase sales. Our video marketing services include scripting, storyboarding, filming and editing your video.

Additional Benefits:
•    Optimized Network Hosting for Fast Access
•    Custom Landing Pages for Your Target Market
•    Personalized Email Campaigns
•    Viewer Analytics and Tracking

Watch This Video Now to Learn More

Also, check out William Mills Agency’s updated Visbyte video at: www.williammills.com/about
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