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Get up-to-date information relating to Coronavirus.

Some of our events are being rescheduled but many of our upcoming events are now taking place as webinars.
Please see the listing below.

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Digital Banking and Fintech Webinar

Buy now pay later: Democratisation of credit or a consumer debt crisis waiting to happen?

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Gren Manuel, Journalism/Media Consultant
Helene Panzarino, Fintech Programme Director, The London Institute of Banking & Finance
Jonathan Westwood, Chief of Staff, Liberis

The use of buy now pay later (BNPL) schemes is accelerating across the world. According to a recent survey by Which?, around a third of the UK adult population have now used a BNPL scheme at least once. And it's not just young adults who are looking to keep up with the latest fashion trends.

Faced with being side-lined in the credit process, many banks are now also looking at B2B white label solutions to help them share in this growing market. The businesses leading the way in the sector are growing rapidly and have clearly caught the eye of investors with a number of generous funding rounds, and unicorns are emerging in this space.

While BNPL can be a useful alternative to other more costly sources of credit, some in the industry are expressing concern about the potential for consumers to become over-indebted and are calling for tighter regulation of the market. A call that the FCA are clearly heeding with an announcement earlier this year that they will introduce regulation aimed at the sector at some point in the future.

In the latest webinar from our Centre for Digital Banking & Finance, Helene Panzarino will be joined by Gren Manuel and Jonathan Westwood to explore the development of the BNPL market so far and discuss the factors that have supercharged its growth.
We'll be looking at the future potential and models for BNPL and how it might find ways to create further value for merchants, financial institutions, and customers. We'll also examine the potential risks of BNPL to consumers and what the providers are doing (or should be doing) to guard against them.

Finally, we'll ask the panel to share the views on what good regulation for the sector might look like and how can providers and the regulator work together to ensure positive consumer outcomes.

Who will be speaking?
Gren Manuel, Journalism/Media Consultant
Helene Panzarino, Fintech Programme Director, The London Institute of Banking & Finance
Jonathan Westwood, Chief of Staff, Liberis

Gren Manuel, Journalism/Media Consultant
Gren Manuel is former European managing editor of The Wall Street Journal and former editor of Financial News. He has been an award-winning reporter on both finance and technology in Europe and Asia. He researched the BNPL industry twice for LIBF's Financial World, most recently in early 2021.


Helene Panzarino, Fintech Programme Director, The London Institute of Banking & Finance
Originally a Commercial Banker, Helene is an experienced fintech 'sherpa', programme director, exited entrepreneur, educator and author. The CEO of New Financial Laboratory, she takes community banks to the digital future by connecting them to the fintech of the present.

The former MD of the global Rainmaking Colab Fintech Programme, a world-first, post-accelerator programme for Series A+ fintechs and Tier 1s, Helene was also responsible for the Inaugural Programme of Education/ Events for Innovate Finance. As Director of the Fintech Programme for the LIBF Digital Banking Centre, Lead Fellow and creator on a world-first Fintech Pathway in a Masters in Tech Entrepreneurship Degree for UCL, and co-creator and delivery partner on the Imperial College Fintech Exec Ed Programme, she is passionate about education.

Specialist subject areas are Digital Banking and Alternative Finance (SME/Bs). A regular judge, speaker, and moderator for the banking and fintech awards and conferences, Helene was a BSI FinTech representative for the UK in Brussels and has been named on the Computer Weekly '100 Women in Tech' list 2018-19 and Innovate Finance 'Women in FinTech Power List' 2019. Her new book is Reinventing banking and finance: frameworks to navigate global fintech innovation (Kogan, Sept 2020).


Jonathan Westwood, Chief of Staff, Liberis
Jonathan Westwood is currently Chief of Staff at Liberis, a global embedded finance provider with a track record of providing 17,000 SMEs worldwide with more than $700m in revenue based financing.

Jonathan has held roles advising and evaluating fintech businesses globally including stints with Unitus Ventures a Seed Fund based in Bangalore, India, and FE International, an US based M&A advisor.

Jonathan's current focus is on expanding Liberis' capability to deliver low cost revenue based finance to SME's, by maximising the structural advantages the embedded finance model provides.

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