Investments, Security Tokens and Chatbots

Saragossa

Investments, Security Tokens and Chatbots

2019 has already got off to a running start, with no sign of slowing down any time soon. Here are just a few of the biggest talking points of the past couple of weeks:

Massive amounts of venture capital investment – There has been a marked uptake in the amount of investment going into newer Fintech endeavours. App-based challenger banks like Monzo and lending marketplaces like Funding Circle were at the forefront of this investment surge, as investment in UK fintech companies reached a massive height of £1.2 billion in 2018.

This is a good sign that the UK fintech market is still going strong, with London continuing to be a hotspot for investment activity even with Brexit looming. Whether or not this enthusiasm for UK fintech will continue remains to be seen, and there will always be some speculation that this is yet another example of a bubble. But for now, at least, UK Fintech is in good shape.

Security tokens are being touted as the saviours of cryptocurrency – Many cryptocurrency fanatics were forced to watch in horror as the price of Bitcoin fell from over $14,000 in January 2018 to just over $3,000 in December of the same year. The crypto non-believers immediately leapt to say ‘we told you so’, however there is still a surprising amount of optimism surrounding crypto, even after this less-than-stellar year.

The biggest new development in cryptocurrency is the potential use of ‘security tokens’ – stocks and bonds which can be traded on the Blockchain in token form. Companies like Apple, Tesla and Facebook are already allowing their shares to be traded using this method, and other companies are expecting to follow suit. While it’s not necessarily the consensus that these tokens will immediately bring Blockchain back to the dizzying heights it once enjoyed, there is a general feeling that they should help to stabilise the market and help Blockchain to establish its legitimacy in the long run.

Chatbots continue to be all the rage – Looking now into the world of Data Science, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, there’s a huge buzz around the use of automated customer communication tools – ‘chatbots’. Such tools can, in theory at least, use data to enable companies to communicate with their customers in more bespoke and targeted ways. Early figures state that 40% of marketing departments have already adopted some form of Artificial Intelligence in their strategies, and this craze doesn’t show any signs of slowing down any time soon.

There is a question to be asked as to whether chatbots will ever reach a stage where they are truly better than simple person-to-person customer service. As Saragossa’s own Jason Howlin commented: ‘Whilst in theory chatbots sound great, they’re just not advanced enough at the moment to have a proper, detailed, human conversation with customers. Of the chatbots I’ve used, they’ve all had their own separate flaws’. He continued ‘There’s a lot of talk about chatbots becoming the new customer service, but I’m not so sure that they’re the only option in that area. Like most ‘Artificial Intelligence’, chatbots still need a huge amount of human interaction and human assistance before they get close to being good enough. I’m all for AI being used to help, but I’m not so sure we should be trying to get it to take over’.

Saragossa are a provider of talent to the Financial Technology, Financial Operations and Data Science sectors. Our role is to match clients with high calibre candidates. Our work encompasses filling temporary contracts along with building permanent teams and resourcing projects. To find out more, please contact enquiries@saragossa.co.uk or call 020 7993 1385.

Saragossa are a talent provider specialising in the Financial Technology, Financial Operations and Data Science sectors. Our role is to match clients with high calibre candidates. Our work encompasses filling temporary contracts along with building permanent teams and resourcing projects. To find out more, please contact enquiries@saragossa.co.uk or call 020 7871 3666.

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