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Notes and Impressions on Money 20/20

The highly promoted and widely anticipated Money 20/20 in Las Vegas certainly lived up to the hype. With roughly 500 exhibitors and 12,000 attendees, the 2016 conference and expo focusedf on payments and financial services innovation introduced a wide variety of ideas to exchange. The releases came at machine gun cadence, with participants large and small taking the occasion of what has become a “must-attend” event to announce new products, services, alliances, and ventures.

A variety of themes ran throughout. The most prevalent had to do with financial services providers’ continuing pivot to a customer-centric focus and the steps taken to facilitate the move in that direction. Information security, identity authentication, and credential verification data assurance were interwoven in what seemed like almost every discussion of any newly fielded offering. More often than not, conversations at least partially touched on opportunities to build customer profiles through the expansion of loyalty programs and establishing approved regular touchpoints and engagement opportunities.

Reflection on these recurring themes illustrates that the payments industry, across its facets, is indeed seeking to become more sensitive and responsive to customer demands and the particular needs of more granular segments of the customer base. While it remains to be seen in actual practice how these new transaction enabling implementations will resonate with consumers, the drive to progress was likely enabled by the exchange of ideas in the exhibit hall, session rooms, and corridors during this landmark annual event.

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