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The Rietumu FinTech Club kicks off with its first meeting

02-Mar-2016 / Products & Services In Riga on Thursday, the first discussions took place, in a club format , as part of the cooperation between Rietumu Bank and TechHub Riga.

„The collaboration between our bank and ТесhHub Riga started a year ago with international competition “Rietumu FinTech Challenge by TechHub Academy”. Due to the event’s success we plan to organize it again in April of this year. The Club’s events are an opportunity for entrepreneurs, students and investors who are interested in using the latest technology to improve the performance of financial services. At Rietumu we strongly believe that Latvia is an ideal platform for the creation and development of tech startups. Meetings like these are intended to help in finding solutions to many current issues – such as how to start a business, how legal regulation works in practice here and abroad, where to find the right people and how to motivate them,” said Member of the Board Renat Lokomet in his opening speech.

Evgeny Kazanin, head of startup Twino, shared his international experience and voiced his own formula for the successful launch of a project– skillful marketing, and financing and legal regulations which do not complicate the path of the new company. These three components, according to this expert, are crucial for rapid development. Evgeny underlined that the Fintech industry is developing extremely fast and the speed of reaction in the decision-making process by legal regulators is an extremely important aspect. While waiting for positive decisions from third parties, a Fintech startup could find itself unable to continue working even with limited scope, possibly even going bankrupt.

The members of the panel discussion were: Eugene Dugaev, Senior Vice-president of Rietumu Bank and responsible for IT and business technology, Mark Adreev who is a member of the new processing center DECTA, Evgeny Kazanin (Twino), and Uldis Paberzis from Mobilly service – one of the most successful veterans among Latvian mobile payment service companies. Discussion moderator, Maris Dagis (Sellfy), talked about hidden pitfalls along the development path of any startup.

“Latvia is a great place for starting a business without unnecessarily large costs, to follow the dynamics of development and gain meaningful experience. It is important that the regulation and legal side move towards new businesses. All the prerequisites are in place in Latvia for starting a Fintech company and gaining recognition on the international market,” said Eugene Dugaev.

In his turn, Mark Andreev expressed confidence in the success of new center DECTA, considering the dynamics of its growth and close cooperation with Rietumu Bank. He also noted the need to further develop the sphere of Fintech as it fosters efficiency of business operations and increases usability/ease of use of everyday financial transactions.

Speaking about the plans of Rietumu Bank, Eugene Dugaev noted that “the bank continues to focus on the Fintech sector and supporting such events. In the next few years the role of our bank will, more than ever, be concentrated on infrastructural functions – multicurrency transactions, issuing of payment products, investment of funds, and liquidity provision for new financial market participants, such as payment institutions, issuers of e-money and international acquirers.”

Rietumu FinTech Club aims to become a functional platform for the heads of successful projects and Fintech experts to exchange knowledge and experience with representatives of the most innovative Latvian and Baltic companies. Therefore, similar events are also planned in the future.

Representatives of the Latvian payment institutions Monea, Mintos, ERGO, Baltijas Datoru Akademija and many others were spotted among the participants at the event.

TechHub Riga is the biggest Latvian IT and technology startup community, which creates new jobs and promotes knowledge exchange among young entrepreneurs. At the moment there are about 30 startups actively working within TechHub Riga. Among its participants and graduates we should mention such startups as infogr.am, Funderful, Fabula, Froont, Sellfy and MaxTraffic. Additionally, TechHub Riga organises regular events related to entrepreneurship and technology: for example, monthly meetups of TechHub Academy and annual conference TechChill Baltics. The strategic partner of TechHub Riga is Lattelecom.

Eleonora Gailisha
Mass Media and Public Relations
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