Georgia Fintech Academy

Episode 16: Community bank innovation acceleration -- Charles Potts, ICBA and Faeez Juneja, UGA rising junior and author

July 02, 2020 Georgia Fintech Academy Season 1 Episode 16
Georgia Fintech Academy
Episode 16: Community bank innovation acceleration -- Charles Potts, ICBA and Faeez Juneja, UGA rising junior and author
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Georgia Fintech Academy
Episode 16: Community bank innovation acceleration -- Charles Potts, ICBA and Faeez Juneja, UGA rising junior and author
Jul 02, 2020 Season 1 Episode 16
Georgia Fintech Academy

Charles Potts, the Chief Innovation Officer of the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) is joined by University of Georgia (UGA) rising junior Faeez Juneja. The discussion considers the acceleration of innovation in the community banking space and also touches on Faeez's upcoming book - "Trillion Dollar Fortune" that will release in December 2020 with New Degree Press. 

Show Notes Transcript

Charles Potts, the Chief Innovation Officer of the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) is joined by University of Georgia (UGA) rising junior Faeez Juneja. The discussion considers the acceleration of innovation in the community banking space and also touches on Faeez's upcoming book - "Trillion Dollar Fortune" that will release in December 2020 with New Degree Press. 

Speaker 1:

Welcome to the Georgia FinTech Academy podcast. The Georgia FinTech Academy is a collaboration between Georgia's FinTech industry and the university system of Georgia. This talent development initiative addresses a massive demand for FinTech professionals and give learners the specialized education experiences needed to enter the FinTech side .

Speaker 2:

Welcome back everybody. This is Tommy Marshall, the executive director of the Georgia FinTech Academy. And this is episode 16 of the doors of FinTech Academy podcast. Today is July 2nd, 2020, and I've got two guests today. One is Charles Potts, the chief innovation officer of ICBA and fight phase. John, John, the jaw . Hope I get that right. You're going to help me there. Um, phase who is a rising junior at UGA. Welcome to you both.

Speaker 3:

Thank you, Tommy . Always good to see you hear your voice and , uh , spend some time with you and [inaudible] good to meet you.

Speaker 2:

Thank you for having me. I want to start , um, with some introductions and, you know, keeping in mind that a lot of our listeners are , um, our students and the, in the university system, Georgia or Charles, could you time to tell us about yourself and your , um, pretty substantial substantial career in , in FinTech?

Speaker 3:

Uh , w well , thank you, Tommy . And , uh , one of the things I would start off by saying is , uh, the Georgia FinTech Academy is, is an amazing endeavor. Uh , we're all super excited to see it underway and , and your leadership there, Tommy is , is really doing some good things. And it , it, it really brings , um, kind of full circle for me. Um , how I, how I really got started. Um , I was that , uh, that kid going to Georgia tech , um, who had to go to work full time to help pay for my way through school and , uh, ended up working for a bank. One of, one of Atlanta's premier, early banks, right down the street Mitchell street , um, right there , um , nearby towards the state. And , um , it afforded me a chance to really start , um , while I was in school, learning about banking. And , um, as part of that, they gave me an opportunity to expand my , uh , my education and , uh , which led me to , uh , Georgia state to , uh, to take classes there , um , as well and Georgia state for , uh , for a lot of the student listeners has , uh , has a long rich history as a, as a commuter school for awhile full-time , um, employees , um, in and around Atlanta who were able to get , um , a very , uh , very rich education there. And a lot of bakers , a lot of us , um , Ken Lewis had went on to run , uh , nations and B of a was there as well. So we we've had , uh , a long close history between the banking industry and the state and seeing what's going on with tech Academy, just, I think, brings, it , brings it home in a really important way. Um, my, my career at CNN was , uh , you know, I like to say I'm kind of that accidental banker who , um , who fell into the right place at the right time, the ability to get a good education , uh, both , uh, in the university system of Georgia , uh, from both Georgia tech and Georgia state, the ability that we walk in a very thoughtful , um , innovative bank at a time that the banking industry and it's really growing and doing some remarkable things, really gave me some good insight into some of the challenges and opportunities. Uh, we continue to see in the banking industry today and that , uh, that, that , uh, ability to kind of be there. And at the same time, all of this interesting technology was happening. This was the early days of the PC, and IBM rolling out there , PC and Apple coming , uh , coming to fruition. And , and Atlanta was a hotbed for a lot of this technology. And a lot of this industry influence and people like myself, we just happened to me at the right place at the right time to see this intersection of technology and financial services. And , uh, and I found myself in a very fortunate place to , um, to be part of that, that led me to work with , uh , a number of , uh, really innovative companies and organizations that not only built technology, but ran services , uh , for a lot of financial , uh, companies, both domestically and abroad , um, that led me into helping build or start my own FinTech companies and be part of some , uh, some amazing ventures , um , in, in that, in that vein. And , um , and in the end, it led me to this , uh , real interesting intersection with the independent community bankers of America and an organization I've worked with before as a , as a technology provider, as a preferred service , uh , partner with a number of , uh , really , um, interesting and , uh , FinTech companies here in the United States. And it has given me the opportunity to really bring not only my technical education, the skills I learned to tech and Georgia state, my banking experience that you said in years of working in startup companies together at a point in time where we see the need to bring innovation to the community bank market , um , on par with everybody else. I mean , our mission, what I have taken over and is really this philosophy that in 2020, there, there is no longer a technical barrier, a technical limitation that precludes a community bank from having the best innovation and technology at their fingertips. And so we've sat about to do that, to figure that out, to make that happen. And that, that takes place in a number of different facets. And it gives us the ability to work with folks like you at the FinTech Academy , right , to help build a bridge and the knowledge and education with students who are coming through there, who want to learn about banking, who want to learn about FinTech. Um, it helps us work with , uh , you know, a lot of the different , uh , source matter experts and thought leaders in the industry in and around what we're doing. And , uh, we went and started a startup accelerator program. So we just finished right before the COVID crisis back in March, the second cohort of a, a startup accelerator program that we run in Arkansas with our business partners at the venture center. And this is , uh , this is an organization that , uh , that FIS also partners with. Um, and we, we actually run our own new 12 week startup boot camp , um , around what we have decided, or we have described as mission driven innovation. And one of the things you and Tommy, you and I have talked about this in some of our , uh , previous interactions that there's a lot of really interesting technology in five days . You'll, you'll see this as you continue your education. There's a lot of really good ideas, but if they're not really focused all on specific problems, specific market segments, then they're really just shiny objects. And you gotta be very careful that you're not just chasing a bunch of shiny objects. So we, we actually curate eight through the thought leadership inside the ICBA through our , uh , bank leadership , uh , selection committees with other industry at a few words, a very finely focused group of problems around which we go and search the world for solution providers. Early stage companies will need to solve those problems. We bring them into little rock and over a 12 week period of time, we teach them community banks. We teach them how to work with community banks, how to walk and talk like a community bank, how to deal with the regulators, how to deal with all of the other industry experts, accounting firms, legal firms, marketing, go to market strategies, pricing. And more importantly, during that 12 week period of time, we bring bankers to sit down with them and fine tune their pitch. Every day. During that 12 week process, those startup companies are having to make their pitch three or four or five or six times a day to a group of bankers can give them real solid feedback who can give them real clear guidance who can do what , um, people like Tommy and I are now aiming to do. And that is marshal all of our , um, uh , call for mature knowledge, right? All of our seasoned knowledge. And these bankers can give knowledge to these startups who over that 12 week period of time are now able to fine tune the solutions to fit the community marketplace. I mean, the thought that , um, I've talked to several , uh , startup entrepreneurs I've worked with over the years, just to think that I could have in a 12 week at any time 50 plus at bats with a group of potential buyers is just an amazing thing. It's just an amazing thing. So, so this, this fine tuning, this honing this crafting of a solution that it's mission driven, it is designed for community bankers. It is, it is helped develop by community bankers. And so when they come out of the other end of this process , uh, these startups have, you know, have a real keen understanding of the market that want to work in and, and, you know, Tommy identifies what it also , uh , what it also does is it speeds up. I mean, it speeds up the ability to get it to market, to , to get a number of , uh, relationships built. Um , and it is a very profound thing that we did we do as part of innovation , uh , within the CBA. Um , so I'm, I'm very blessed to be at this time in place where we can apply a lot of these lessons learned , uh, and really drive innovation in a very focused way.

Speaker 4:

Yeah, that's a helpful overview. And I want to come back to ICBA in a minute, but , uh , failures , tell us, tell us about you and what your experience has been like at , at UGA . Sure. So I'm, [inaudible] , I'm a rising junior at university of Georgia. I'm studying economics and I'm really excited this fall to be a Leonard leadership scholar in the Institute for leadership advancement, which is a two-year program that has coursework in, I guess, personal and organizational leadership. And it really gives the opportunity for me to grow academically as well as personally, through a series of service projects and , uh, things of that nature. So overall , um , I've been really interested in financial technology starting last summer when I was at a think tank in DC called the American enterprise Institute, and I was studying economics there and public policy. And one thing that really attracted me was just the ability of like how innovation has really transformed , uh, the United States to becoming sort of the global leader , uh , when it comes to anything business related . And so I found out about financial technologies through discussions with , um, sort of people who were at , um, you know, the top policy makers in the city, essentially. So I remember talking to Kevin Hassett , who was the , uh, chair of the council on economic affairs , um , back in DC and this one meeting where we were talking, and he was actually talking about how , um , there are new technologies that are come up and how he needs to sort of have his team take a look at all of these and figure out great policy proposals for the president. So, overall, I think I learned about the George FinTech Academy through a LinkedIn when I found one of my friends, Tyler accurate , uh , being part of one of your episodes, and this really just interested in me in the overall FinTech community here in Georgia itself. And so now I've learned about the FinTech certificate at my university. I'm really interested in pursuing it , uh , this upcoming year. And I think overall, just all the resources that you have on your website have been really meaningful and important for students like me who want to learn about the potential internships that are coming up next summer, or just about how I can educate myself on FinTech. Uh , one last thing that I'm going to say is that I'm really excited to announce that I have a book coming up this December published by new degree press. And the book is called trillion dollar fortune, which is essentially describing how India can become the third largest economy in the next decade through using innovative practices, across business policy and technology. And the entire premise of the book is how India can actually harness these technologies to ensure that it's achieving a sustainable form of development and not one that is exploring the environment, or , um, simply , um , increasing the socioeconomic divide in India itself. And so I'm really excited about that, especially from the FinTech perspective, because India has a booming FinTech industry right now, it has the third largest startup ecosystem in the world when it comes to FinTech. And , uh, I'm just really excited about sort of international finance. And I'm so glad that I'm here on this podcast with two wonderful people, so really excited.

Speaker 3:

And I'm excited about your book. That's an , that's an awesome , uh, endeavor and that's a great topic. I, I can't , uh, I can't wait to , uh, to read, never met a

Speaker 2:

College sophomore. That's written a book. That's about how did you decide? I mean, what , tell me about when you, when did you decide I'm going to write a book and how did you come to this , uh, kind of , uh , topic focus on India and economic development of India?

Speaker 4:

Yeah, absolutely. So, I mean, I'm Indian. I grew up in India for the first eight years of my life. I've been really interested in, I guess, politics at a very young age, and I sort of got more interested in business. And so I've always looked at the world through an international lens and a globalized class just because I'm the product of globalization. Like my dad came here for a job and , um, I've been living here in the United States since. And so I've become passionate about India , um, just because I have a good understanding of the country itself. I go back every few years and , um, just this past year, I've been working with the Indian embassy and , uh , fostering relations between international students or in the United States and just the institutions that are here in the U S as well as back home in India. And so there's a hundred thousand international students here already, and that has a lot of implications for India itself because there's just a lot of capital, like, I mean , human capital here in the U S that can benefit people back home as well, home being India. And so I'm just sort of someone who's really interested in understanding how the United States in India can shape the future of the world, just because I'm really passionate about on the development of both countries. And , um, about the book , um, real quick , um, the professor Eric coaster, who is a professor at Georgetown, actually reached out to me on LinkedIn one day because , um , he found out that I was on the editorial board of the Georgia political review , um , which is a student run publication. And , um, he was essentially like, Hey, you seem to have some writing experience. Do you want to write a book? And I said, yeah, I do. But I just don't know how to do that. And he said, well, I have a program at Georgetown and essentially he trains students to publish books. And he's done that for hundreds of students across the country the past few years. And I said, well, I really want to be a part of this. So starting January of this year, I've been in the process and I'm super glad that I just finished my first draft manuscript last week, sent it to my editors and I'm just waiting for feedback.

Speaker 2:

That's awesome. That's awesome. And I know it's a ton of work writing. A book is no easy endeavor and I'm fair . You'll be , uh, in the midst of plenty of edits , um , for, for a few more months to come, but I'll look forward to the publication and , uh, uh , hope I'll might be fortunate enough to get a signed copy,

Speaker 4:

Get you to

Speaker 2:

Sign my copy once I'm bought it. Of course, I, to buy it first, maybe my honor. That's cool. Um, yeah, so I think, you know , let's get into some more discussion here. You teed this up a little bit, Charles, and then I'm , you know, I'm kind of , there's lots of questions kinda coming into my mind around , uh, you know, some of where these intersection points between our community banking in the United States and , um , maybe , uh, the Indian economy and , uh , a lot of what it has to offer, but , um, you know, see if we can, maybe we wind our way into seeing where those intersections may lie.

Speaker 3:

Well, I actually, I was gonna say I actually, I think there's a phase just , uh , I mean, with this book prompted me to, to, to think about this subject. I mean, one of the, you know , one of the obvious things that we've talked about and seen over the last few months is how community banks have , have kind of marshal the resources have really risen to the challenge to deal with , uh , the COVID crisis and getting PPP loans, right? The small business lending that's taken place. And to a large extent, a lot of that was , um, the ability of these banks to really grab hold of some new innovative technology. Uh, some of which has been built in a number of the companies that we've sponsored with have , um, had very large , um, historical , um, Indian development roots around AI and machine learning based , uh , technologies and this , um, this , uh , reimagining reawakening, if you will, of how banks of all sizes , um , can really tap into this , uh, really showed itself in a very profound way , uh, during this , uh , or during this PPP loan time , uh , the , the number of banks that had to real quickly put in place , um, some new lane , uh , processes, some , uh, some robotic process automation, AI , uh , tools around , uh , you know , know your customer when you're writing all of that. All of that happened in just, just a matter of weeks. Um, and , and it reinforces, you know, a good bit of the message that we've been evangelizing. That goes back to my point earlier. There's no, there's no longer a technology barrier there it's , it's just not there. And , um, and the globalization that happens , uh, because these tools are there in more abundance , um, it's just natural , um, 17 startup companies , uh, we've had to come through our accelerator program. Um, several of them are Indian based Indian led companies and their ability to work with the smallest of the smallest community banks , um, in this time of crisis. Um, it is again, just a great, a great reminder, a great reinforcement that , um, you know, globalization is real and it's right here in our near backyards and in a very real way.

Speaker 2:

Very interesting.

Speaker 3:

Yeah. He , um, I'm sorry, Tommy.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I was gonna ask like, when help us, I mean , maybe chose, just remind us again, like how many community banks there are in the United States. And , um, and then also I think of community banking . I'm not Zach or not, but I think of community banking is kind of a uniquely American , um, industry or construct business construct. But I say that not having a ton of doubt around how banking banking has been set up in other parts of the world. Yeah , look, we we're , we're ,

Speaker 3:

You know , some 5,100 community banks around the country, we're actually seeing a name in the songs of some Denovo banks , uh , starting up a number here in the state of Georgia as well. And , uh, two-thirds of all small business loans in the United States come out of community banks and community banks are small businesses. Um , I think one in , uh , one in three counties in the United States has a community bank presence in them. So it's, it's very richly ingrained in the culture and, and, and basically in the fabric of how we do business , um , here in the U S it is, it is very unique to the U S there's , uh, there's not as much , um, uh, bifurcation if you will, in other countries that are probably the building societies in the UK that come closest , um , just in terms of kind of their, their mission and their vocalization , but it is a very, very unique , um, a very unique , uh , relationship. And where are you finding the healthy community bank? You find a healthy community and vice versa. So there is a , there's a very strong, strong tie there. And when you look at how community banks Rose to the occasion for the caress , getting these small business loans in the hands of millions of businesses around the country and the millions of jobs , uh , it represented, you know, that is a , that is a very profound statement on , on, on this relationship that is integral in our economy between , uh, consumers, small businesses and the community bank industry.

Speaker 2:

Hmm . The , um, I was also, I just was remembering to Charles that I'd seen some news related to Exxon Anika and , uh, them winning , um, something in India. And I just, I found the post from , uh, you know, gash, their CEO that they just won , um, recognition as the number one FinTech startup award in , uh, in QA. And , um, this, this just came out this year for this company [inaudible] , they are graduate of one of the programs that the venture center in little rock , uh, puts on. This is what , uh , Charles was talking about at the top of the show. Um, and they've , um, you know, they've really grown remarkably in , uh, in the U S but also in globally, and you've got the strong ties to India. So , uh, that's , uh , that's a kind of an interesting , uh , recent , um, uh , news , uh, where we've got a lot of overlap between is a FinTech ecosystem in the U S and uh , in India.

Speaker 3:

Yeah. And this is , um , th th that phase, this is Tommy's point to me. They, they came into our program , uh, back in 1st of January in his team. He came over from India, lived in little rock for , uh, for three months , uh, community banking in the side now become , uh, an important, valuable partner with us in , in this, in this process and, and what it also , uh, what it also points out is , uh, we, we, we look every week when we're talking about the mission driven innovation, we're talking about finding solutions that can solve problems that, that community banks have. Uh, you know, we, we went to India, we've got companies out of Televiv , we've got companies out of the UK and , um, and , uh , and other , um , one, we , we laugh about the CEO. He lives everywhere. Um, one of the companies that came through, you know , he said , it's a , it's a very , um , it's a very , um, interesting time and that you can again see the globalization really happening on a, on a very important scale.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. I mean, that's just like Sonic examples of going , I mean, little rock to pruning . And I think, you know, they were operating in both programs at the same time and just the ability and we're recognized in both. So , um, you know, pretty remarkable,

Speaker 3:

I'll also invite as you can, if you can appreciate this, this, this shows the ability of taking me solutions that may have been built for large global firms and all of this kind of knowledge, and being able to bring it to a community bank in a form and manner that they can easily digest easily use. And that is, that is a real , uh , we talk about some of the aspects of the book you're thinking about, right? How do you leverage technology? Um , how do you do these things to create sustainable economies? Part of it is, is a scalar issue. How do you bring these things down to a local scale? Um, that that is , um , easy to use?

Speaker 4:

Absolutely. Yes.

Speaker 2:

You've been listening here to Charles talk a little bit about community banking. Um , you know , not expecting you to have any detail of understanding of this space, but I'm just curious, like , um, any , you know, any questions that have come to mind or any experiences you've had with , uh, community banks and the UMass , um, the , uh, I'm just , I'm interested to kind of hear your perspective , um , on this space of the banking industry.

Speaker 4:

Okay. Yeah. Quite frankly, I don't have that in-depth knowledge of the community banking. I mean, I live down the street from like a one community from a community bank, so that's good. I pass it all the time. Um , back in high school, it was just on my way, but I don't really have a good , good understanding of what community banking is. So if you mind, Charles, could , could I ask you a couple of questions that have an understanding of the industry easily? Sweet. So I really want to know, so I love how you talked about, about two thirds of the loans in the United States are approved through community banks. And I love that quote about how like, community bank in the community means it's a healthy community. Um, something of that nature. I really love that quote. So could you please elaborate as to like how community banks are directly benefiting the people in the community? Like, in what way are they actually know enrichment in empowering these individuals or communities?

Speaker 3:

Yeah . Great question. So to a large extent that these are , um , they , these are some of your , um , leaders in those communities. When you think about , um, uh , non-metro is suburban or rural marketplace to , uh, to a large extent your, your small business owners, the leadership within these banks , uh, they, these are the people that help form the fabric of the identity around a lot of these communities. And so the community bank really becomes this hub, the central , uh, resource around which , uh , businesses can get their capital, right? The employees can have a really solid financial relationship and the financial services they need , um , as they grow through their life . Um, the, the ecosystem of those communities , um, are, are tightly woven together , uh , so that, you know, the banks really are the vehicle by which , uh , we, as individuals and businesses can grow and succeed and , and thrive . And we like to say that our mission now is to really help the community banks four-ish. And that is , and that is a , that is a part of making sure that , um , both from a traditional legacy advocacy role, because that's a large part of what we do, or I we're, we're , we're a grassroots advocacy firm on behalf of the community banks that we're working with, the regulators and the legislative side to make sure the playing field is fair. And even to , to allow community banks to, to, to flourish and through the efforts such as innovation initiatives, we're helping provide the tools and capabilities to service , not only the banks, but their employees and their customers and their customers' customers. That's a tightly woven , uh, important aspect of the way our economy here in the U S has grown since the beginning of time.

Speaker 4:

Absolutely. Yeah . I think another question that I have is probably you mentioned , um, just how during the crisis community banks have really stepped up their , their , uh, digital innovation efforts. So could you please talk about at least one of these , uh, technology enabled services?

Speaker 3:

So probably the most , um, obvious if you , if you don't mind me using that is as soon as the cocaine crisis hit, a lot of banks had to figure out how to interact with their customers , um, in a, in a remote , uh, quarantined way. So the need to stand up more digital facing tools, the ability to , to communicate, to talk to their customers, to leverage that , uh , became high need as banks kind of shut down and it went home, if you will, and they didn't all shut down, but you often obviously couldn't have people in face-to-face contact. So immediately the digital persona, the digital presence that digital side of the bank , uh , was, was needed to be beefed up. It was , uh, it was enhanced. I became a good communication vehicle. Um, it became a great way to interact with both retail customers and the business customers, and then going into the PDP new loan process. This is the ability to make loans to small businesses. They had to put some enhanced tools to help facilitate that application processing , um, the due diligence, the underwriting, and the interaction with those small businesses. So all of those things , uh , became that much more important. And for a lot of banks, it , it was one of two things. It was either enhanced what you borrowed , you got, or net new investment in standing up some new services, all of which got accelerated and compressed in a very short period of time. Uh , so what you're now seeing is a lot of those banks is now they've kind of caught their breath and we've, you know, we've, we've marshaled some five plus million loans that these banks processed in a very short period of time. They're now looking at those tools. And we had talked to a number of bankers who have these great anecdotes where somebody in the bank will say, well, you know, that thing we did for PPP long , are we going to keep that and be able to use that going forward with the rest of our business? And that's, you know, that's the real awakening that's happened is they looked at the things that anything to do to solve this real crisis, this real need in a , in a crunch time. And now they're able to look at it and say, wow, that's a very valuable tool. I might be able to apply to my business as usual as I go forward. And that's that , you know, that really was , um, kind of the, the aha, if you will, is that accelerated innovation at a time of crisis has created an opportunity for these banks to now have better ways, alternative ways to service their markets , uh , that they didn't have before.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. And I think it certainly points to just some great opportunities here in the near term for our established existing FinTech players. Um, but also for new business creation , um , as well , um, which is what ,

Speaker 3:

So we we've had 17 companies come through our accelerator program, the ICBA ThinkTech accelerator in the last two years, 11 of them had solutions that they were able to deploy and put in market to address some of these , uh , the PPP concerns,

Speaker 2:

The , um, let's turn , um, just to news, that's caught our eye over the last, a week in Thintech. Um, how about you? What any, any kind of big, big FinTech headlines that , uh , caught your attention?

Speaker 4:

Yeah. So just last week, I learned about how MasterCard has announced that it wants to acquire , uh , the startup called fin or a purchasing price of about a billion dollars, which is just incredible, considering that we're seeing these incumbent financial institutions really leveraging , uh, you know, innovation to stay at the top of their game. And , um, another thing about MasterCard that I'm interested in is that the , um , CEO, the recent CEO, so he's no longer CEO, but he's , um, Indian and he's actually someone who was really advocated for more us India technology partnerships. And so last year, India, I mean, MasterCard has announced that they want to invest about a billion dollars into India in the next few years, just so that they can really make it into a global technology hub . So that's something that I've been really interested in and just sort of acquiring fin city. I mean, it's just something that talks volumes about how FinTech has come into the mainstream and it's no longer just in its early stages.

Speaker 2:

Right. That's RJ , Paul bang got the , um, the former recent or the chairman now of MasterCard, right? Yeah.

Speaker 3:

Yeah. And then the fitness city acquisition , uh , look, these are just acquired plan . It's very, very similar. I don't want to say defensive, but it gives both of those companies , um, some pretty interesting new tools. And obviously we look at the industry and look at that capability. Um, fortunately, both visa and MasterCard are our partners of us . ICBA on our bank card side, but that's been a , that's going to open up an opportunity for the next , um , aggregator to come along, right. To fill the void that may be there , uh , after these acquisitions, after the dust settles on these acquisitions . So those are the , that's a , that's a huge acquisition in a very, a very important one too .

Speaker 2:

Charles, what about news , um, news that caught your attention in the past week?

Speaker 3:

I'll tell you the one that puts a big smile on my face as the FDI sees a project to a two away with the call report and , uh , in launching this week , um, they're their own little startup initiative, their own little competition to modernize the call report. You know, this is a , uh , this is a very burdensome task, especially banks. Um, I mean it's somewhere between 12 and 1400 pieces of data. They got to collect and put together. And so there've been all these legacy platforms and solutions and tools in place. And , uh, and I think this , uh, I mean, we, we, we love the leadership of the FDI stay in this really , uh , what we're seeing across all the regulatory bodies is the, the awakening to put in you innovative approaches and new tools to really help the banks not only be more efficient, but also some visibility into what's coming down the road, as we all know, you know, things like the call report or a snapshot looking backwards. Right. And by the time you get it, it's, it's outdated data.

Speaker 2:

Yeah . And it's a quarterly, right? The FTS quarterly reports .

Speaker 3:

Yeah. So this is , um, this is, I mean, they've invited, you know, twice they got 20 something , um, technology companies, we're not really sure who all is playing in there, but they'd given them up a hackathon roadmap. And , uh , and to me, that's, that's something we all want to see the regulators , uh , do more of, right . It really spawns innovation, spawns ideas gives us all a way to really look at improving the strength and the soundness of the banking system and the efficiency of how , uh, how banks can work with the regulatory body . So I think that's a , that's a pretty, you know, they have DIC is running a tech sprint. It's just that it just puts a smile on my ,

Speaker 2:

Yeah, that's cool. Um, well, great. I'm going to wrap things up there. I really want to thank , um , you both , uh, [inaudible] really great to have you on, I hope you'll come back and be on again. Uh, we, we could dedicate an entire show to the trillion dollar fortune when it gets released in December. We just need to plan on doing that and then Charles, wonderful to have you engage . Thanks again for all you do for the Georgia FinTech Academy. Um , and it's just been a wonderful to have your personal engagement and then see engagement of ICBA , uh, in the , in the FinTech Academy as we continue to evolve. Um, so thanks again for being here.

Speaker 3:

Thank you really appreciate , um , everything that you guys are doing. [inaudible] , I'm excited to hear her hear about this book. I do want to see that , uh, that copy when it comes out in , uh, please , uh , don't hesitate to reach out to me and help me guys .

Speaker 2:

Thank you so much, Charles,

Speaker 1:

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