Former Barclays chief executive and current UK shadow chair of the Institute for Apprenticeships, Antony Jenkins has warned that banks may become antiquated and irrelevant should they fail to embrace contemporary fintech solutions in a recent interview with CNBC.
Mr. Jenkins Suggested That Emerging Financial Technologies Pose an Existential Challenge to Traditional Banks
Antony Jenkins warned that banks may become subject to creative destruction should they fail to embrace cryptocurrency technology. In a recent interview with CNBC, Mr. Jenkins suggested that adopting distributed ledger technologies could produce efficiency savings of between $80-$110 billion, and allow traditional financial institutions to be competitive with bitcoin and other emerging financial technologies.
“We’re really at the end of the beginning of what we see as a revolution driven by technology with financial service… as the technologies develop and season, they’re going to create a totally different way of doing banking and financial services,” Jenkins told CNBC at the Money 20/20 Europe conference in Copenhagen. “Now we will see the possibility… [of] banks becom[ing] irrelevant to their customers. Banks can avoid that, but they have to act now, and what they really need to do is think about innovation, but also transformation, doing something radically different.”
Mr. Jenkins’ Remarks Come as the Bank He Previously Chaired Announced It Has Met With UK Regulators Regarding Cryptocurrency
Jenkins described cryptocurrencies and other breakthrough financial technologies as just the start of a major transformation of traditional banking practices. “This is just in the footprints of what’s going to happen here. As these technologies season and develop, we can imagine total transformation of the banking system, using blockchain for example, in a world where banks don’t really exist anymore.”
Antony Jenkins’ remarks come at the same time as the bank that he previously chaired, Barclays, announced that it has been in direct communications with the UK Financial Conduct Authority with regards to developing a permissive regulatory framework for cryptocurrency businesses in the United Kingdom.
Remarks such as those from Antony Jenkins and current Barclays CEO Ashok Vaswani illustrate the recent influx of leading figures in the mainstream finance industry seeking to embrace and profit from cryptocurrency technology. Despite the enthusiasm from the finance industry, many within the cryptocurrency remain skeptical about major global financial institutions utilizing blockchain technology – arguing that such may lead to blockchain and bitcoin technology being used as a tool for greater centralization and an augmentation in the global finance industry’s profits and power.