On April 10, the sixth WHU Entrepreneurship Roundtable entitled "Mobile Banks and FinTech Startups: Transforming Financial Markets" took place at the Düsseldorf campus of WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management.
In his welcoming speech, Professor Dr. Markus Rudolf, Dean of WHU, emphasized the importance of digitization for the financial market and thanked the MBA students for their commitment to the values of WHU. Afterward, not only several FinTech start-ups had the opportunity to present their business ideas and visions, but also various representatives of long-established financial companies and banks, such as Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank, had the chance to give their views on the changes brought about by digitization and to develop solutions for the future.
Ulrich Coenen, Executive Vice President Marketing and Digital Banking at Commerzbank, explained, for example, the so-called "Commerzbank Campus Model," which changes conventional operating procedures and brings IT know-how and specialist knowledge closer together to position Commerzbank innovatively in the field of digitization. He said that one should be aware of the fact of sailing in uncharted waters and therefore one still faces some unknown challenges.
However, the political and governmental view of the future of the financial sector was also examined. Speakers included Dr. Patrick Opdenhövel, State Secretary in the Ministry of Finance of North Rhine-Westphalia, and Doris Dietze, Head of Digital Finance, Payments & Cybersecurity Division at Germany’s Federal Ministry of Finance. She explained that digitization is one of the government's key priorities and that various measures are being taken to make Germany fit for the future. She concluded her keynote speech with the sentence "Not catching up is not an option."
The WHU Entrepreneurship Roundtable is an initiative of MBA students at WHU to serve as a platform to discuss business ideas, practice pitches, and get expert advice on start-up and entrepreneurship topics. The student initiative also organizes events to build a network and exchange among VCs, CVCs, founders, legal experts, and practitioners.