VP Securities recently entered into a sponsored partnership with Copenhagen Fintech, a Copenhagen-based FinTech Hub that connects technology start-ups in the financial sector with established industry players. This sponsored partnership is the latest in a series of initiatives supporting VP’s new strategic direction, which includes the CSD introducing a new data-services business area.
Maria Hjorth, Deputy CEO at VP Securities, highlights the advantages of this sponsored partnership in helping VP reach its strategic objectives. “It’s very impressive how Copenhagen Fintech has created an ecosystem that gathers mature organisations together with Danish and international Fintech start-ups. That combination, where established players meet new market entrants, is where the magic happens.” The ‘magic’ from VP’s perspective, can be an acceleration of the company’s newest business area, data services.
“We can help to accelerate the growth of some of these start-ups, and they can help accelerate our innovation, with a particular focus on our business growth and data. As a CSD, we have large amounts of data at our disposal, yet we don’t have a lot of experience in commercializing that data, identifying ways of packaging it and offering it as services that would benefit our customers. Some of the fintech start-ups can help us with that.”
According to Thomas Krogh Jensen, Copenhagen FinTech CEO, VP is the ideal type of partner for the organisation. “Back in the early days, VP was one of the first financial institutions in the world to digitalize the securities infrastructure and flow. They are one of the original financial technology frontrunners, and are essentially a Fintech company themselves. If anyone understands technology, digital transformation and how these impact the financial sector, it’s them.”
A mutually beneficial partnership
As a part of the sponsored partnership, VP gains access to 50 start-ups in the Fintech Lab, 250 Fintech start-ups in Denmark and a global network of over 1,000 start-ups working on different solutions and technologies. This unique access is already generating benefits for both parties. “We’re getting more of an opportunity to meet both Danish and international start-ups working in this space, invite them to our offices and learn from their experiences and business models. We gain a fascinating perspective, and we can learn a lot from how they work, how they scale and the tempo with which they’re able to launch new products and services,” Maria Hjorth comments. “As the only CSD participating in this ecosystem, we are also in a unique position to bolster this network with our business model and data services.”
The start-ups also benefit from VP’s longstanding experience in the Fintech world. “With VP, our start-ups get a partner who can understand their world and where they’re coming from,” states Thomas Krogh Jensen. “It’s really an ideal fit, because what we do is a form of technology matchmaking, where we take emerging technologies and place them in the hands of more mature organisations that are in the market for innovative solutions.”
Hackathon planned for the fall
One of the concrete initiatives that will come out of this partnership is a hackathon, which VP will host together with Copenhagen Fintech later this year. Participants will work together to develop services based on selected data VP has available. “This hackathon is an excellent example of creating a new partnership and using that cooperation to create new services and products across organisations,” states Maria Hjorth. “This is a space where we’re not competing; we’re working together to create something new and innovative.”
Thomas Krogh Jensen agrees. “A hackathon is a very powerful idea generation tool. It’s about gathering lots of different people with different backgrounds together, giving them the freedom and space to brainstorm and think creatively, and then seeing the innovative, new ideas that come about as a result. It’s a wonderfully open playing field, where we get to brainstorm new, data-driven revenue streams. That’s just the type of challenge that interests us.”
In addition to sponsoring events like the hackathon, Maria Hjorth points out that the partnership also helps VP to keep pace with the latest innovations within the Fintech space. “One of the interesting areas we’re following is tokenisation of securities. It represents new and potentially disruptive business models covering the value chain of securities from issuance to custody and settlement.”
Accelerating new product development, staying abreast of new technologies and mentoring new start-ups, the benefits of this partnership are manifold. And at the end of the day, it’s also about giving back. “We believe it’s part of our social responsibility to help start-ups. And personally, I’m excited to see the innovative solutions we can develop together,” concludes Maria Hjorth.