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Read our latest news, event top takeouts and announcements.

  • 5 Sep 2018 14:24 | Deleted user

    Customer centricity has now become an assumption - of course you put your target consumer at the forefront of your activities. This becomes somewhat more complicated in practice however, particularly for an industry that didn’t exist 15 years ago and continues to grow and contort at a staggering pace, and despite brands knowing more about the market than ever before.  

    In what can only be described as a true-marketer approach to some of the more controversial adtech related incidents of recent times, we learned that perhaps data isn’t as scary, or as precious, as we hold it to be, and that the context of humanity and behaviour should always accompany it.


    • Defining adtech and customer centricity

    • The evolution, and sophistication of adtech and the industry

    • The biggest threat to adtech

    • Data management and privacy

    • The future of adtech



    1. Adtech’ broadly refers to digital tools, platforms and analytics used for advertising. It’s technology that delivers the right message, at the right time, to the right audience, and/or reports on how it performed.

    2. It’s mostly data and hyper-consolidation that are shaping the adtech industry of today.

    3. Video, AR and other formats are creating campaigns that are not only visually impressive, but targeted and measured in a way that offline advertising has never truly been able to achieve.

    4. The biggest threat to adtech is that the data is predominantly owned and controlled by three tech giants, creating an oligopoly where they’re essentially able to operate as they please without challenge.

    5. The lack of competitors, transparency, and ineffective regulation has also enabled privacy scandals like Cambridge Analytica.

    6. Emerging technology like blockchain and voice technology will have a huge impact on the way that data is managed and content is presented.

    7. Think two to three campaigns ahead. By building in the relevant data points to what you’re doing now, you can ensure that you become more relevant and personalised to your audience with each campaign.

    8. Consider how to ascertain the emotional and behavioural context around the numbers that your campaign generates, as the insights will inform your messaging and content for the better.

    9. Brands that guide themselves by the principles of relevancy, and ‘just because you can doesn’t mean you should’, give themselves a better chance of ensuring they don’t end up news for the wrong reasons.

    10. Find the connection between the data and the humanity.

  • 15 Jul 2018 14:25 | Deleted user

    On the 18th of June, the Australian Centre for Robotic Vision (funded by the Australian Research Council) released Australia’s first Robotics Roadmap. The document aims to ‘guide how Australia can harness the benefits of the new robot economy’ and it joins a host of other international roadmaps, confirming our march toward the fourth industrial revolution.

    Just four days before, our panel gave us insight into how robots are already working among us, and - with the help of a Star Wars simile - we learned that there’s more to this technology than Terminator, A.I Artificial Intelligence, or even Wall-E would have us believe...  


    • What Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is and how it works

    • How and where physical robots are used

    • The limitations of robotics

    • How RPA works alongside of Natural Language Processing (NLP)

    • Tips for determining the best applications of robotics and how to educate your workforce

    • The impact of robotics on the workforce


    • Annie Hariharan, Senior Manager, PwC

    • Leigh Pullen, Executive Director, CiGen

    • Nicci Rossouw, CEO, Exaptec


    1. RPA is software that is robot-like; programmed to complete standardised processes that were once completed manually by a human (often times the ‘grunt work’). These robots are wholly task-based.

    2. Telepresence robots are iPad’s attached to a stick, controlled by a human in another location through an application that allows them to drive the bot, be seen and communicate via the hardware. Service bots are an extension of telepresence incorporating more apps and capabilities, while companion bots include the ability to speak several languages and perform both physical and digital tasks.

    3. The key features of physical bots and RPAs have obvious applications across a wide range of sectors, but in Australia the uptake has been slow

    4. At its core, RPA is fast, efficient and accurate. It is prime for processes that are simple and standard.

    5. Robots cannot truly take the place of humans in all roles and responsibilities (at this point in time), because they are not truly artificially intelligent - they cannot (as C-3P0 does) understand context, infer, or derive meaning.

    6. The greatest impact RPA will have will be on entry-level, or low-skilled, positions. These are the kinds of roles that teach us how to work, and how to do our jobs, to eventually move up the chain.

    7. Headcount reduction, or cost-play, are not a compelling enough reasons to implement robotics.

    8. The most culturally-successful introductions of bots occur when organisations are transparent with, and educate their workforce during integration.

    9. Risk in RPA is inherited from the programmer, or those designing the work flow. To minimise potential risks, approach managing a bot as you would any other employee by restricting access and enforcing data purging.

    10. Robotics will continue to evolve with the integration of NLP and machine learning.

    Image credit: IBM THINKLab Aging in Place Environment: Softbank Pepper Robots

  • 4 Jun 2018 14:26 | Deleted user

    Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) have proved that they have the potential to change the way businesses use technology. Imagine the impact of being able to combine the two – being able to effectively merge the real and digital worlds.

    Enter mixed reality (MR), technology that combines the virtual environment with the real world. Experienced via a head-mounted wearable display, users gain a real-time view of actual surroundings combined with an overlay of intelligent virtual objects that allows for new interactions through gesture and voice.


    • What is mixed reality?

    • What are the enterprise and consumer applications?

    • What are the current limitations and challenges of the technology?

    • How are mixed reality applications being used to improve the workplace?

    • Is mixed reality ethically neutral?



    1. MR is where AR, VR and the IoT collide or intersect. It involves taking digital objects – visualisations, virtualisations – and brings them into the physical world, giving digital objects physical characteristics.

    2. MR is less obtrusive than VR as it allows its users to interact with tangible objects in a real environment, utilising overlaid augmented, digital content to create realistic scenarios.

    3. Some analysts predict the value of the virtual market will be worth US$28 billion by 2020.

    4. Consumer-facing applications for MR are limited. With more universally appealing content needed, immersive narrative-based storytelling has been flagged as an area that will likely lead to more users.

    5. Enterprise applications of MR are being developed across many industries exploring use cases and pilot applications. Applications of MR for training and data visualization are proving to be game-changing.

    6. Training and testing scenarios can be run in the digital world, creating a realistic digital copy of a set of circumstance that couldn’t otherwise be safely replicated, are costly to administer or not a true reflection of what a trainee will experience in the field.

    7. MR is a game changer for data visualisation because it allows data to be more easily perceived, manipulated and interacted with. Situated analytics has applications for workplaces where workers may not have their hands free and need to access information quickly.

    8. MR is hamstrung by current hardware. This includes uncomfortable headsets, being tethered and latency.

    9. Current price point for headsets like the Microsoft HoloLens is hindering mass market appeal, keeping consumer level adoption and usage rates low.

    10. A unique challenge is how children will interpret MR scenarios. With real environments colliding with virtual environments, there is the very real potential for children to have difficulty distinguishing between the real and virtual.

    Image credit: Lucas Giolito tries out virtual reality by Arturo Pardavila III

  • 21 May 2018 14:26 | Deleted user

    The risk of a bad user experience in voice is higher than for screen.  Unless you invest more in a custom solution through a smaller company, then you need to work within the limitations of Echo and Google Home.  The tolerance for a bad experience is also much lower for voice users - they are likely to be less familiar with voice than they are with screen, but also expect it to be the quicker, easier option, making your window for success smaller.

    To give your skill the best chance of succeeding, be sure to do the following -


    While some might bark orders at their phone, the best experience is one that feels conversational. To create that you need to use copywriters, and you need to do your research. Look into any forums related to your industry and observe how your audience are using language.

    This also has implications for SEO, which is now rewarding natural language and longer-form content.


    Did you know there are over 40,000 ways to request a flight? They include airlines, times, days, locations, and then mannerisms and phrasings for each combination.  You need to identify each of the iterations for your skill, and develop responses to match. Nothing turns a user off quicker than, ‘Sorry, something went wrong. Please repeat your request.’   


    It is a monstrous, and largely manual task identifying the thousands, and thousands, and thousands, and thousands, of different ways different people can ask the same question, so chances are high you may miss one or two.  Create shortcuts that allow your skill to fill in the blanks, rather that failing to progress unless it has a 100% match to something it recognises. 

    You can do this through account-linking and assumptions.  Account-linking may help to pull in some of the users basic data - full name, birth date etc - without having to ask too many follow-up questions.  These follow-ups can make the experience feel more like a phone conversation and the point-of-difference (convenience) is lost.

    Assumptions can be built in to the AI engine to assist the skill.  For example; if a user asks for session times for a movie but does not state the day, you can assume it is for that day and respond with those times, rather than asking.


    The nuances of language and translation are a key challenge to taking a skill to audiences in different countries, with different languages.  To capture these, it is best to employ a team on the ground in each of the countries you wish to target - translation is not a simple conversion.


    The unique freedom that comes from interacting with a screen, rather than a person, is why we have keyboard warriors. The same can apply to voice interactions.  It’s important to include polite responses as part of your output not only for these users, but for older generations who will speak to technology as if they were a person sitting across from them. Programming greetings, ‘thank yous’ and ‘pleases’ will help to personalise the experience for your audience.


    For around fifty thousand dollars, brands can get their own ‘voice’.  There are benefits to having your own - it can mirror your brand more closely, and appeal to your specific audience.  However, because of the limitations on the technology the risks of errors, and a bad experience, are high and you may find that the voice you have invested in, becomes associated with failure. So for now, let Alexa take the heat.   


    Voice is a whole new experience compared to screen, using entirely different human skills and senses - speech and hearing, rather than sight.  Just as you can’t directly translate into another language without consulting cultural norms and mannerism, you can’t do a direct translation of your screen content to voice.  Imagine trying to maintain the attention of your user while Alexa reads out a full web page? Consider the best applications of voice for your users needs and develop an experience tailored to help fulfil and achieve these.

    These tips came from our recent event, Utilising Voice Technologies: Why type when you can talk. 

    Photo by Andres Urena on Unsplash

  • 6 Apr 2018 14:28 | Deleted user

    Hooray! We’re pleased to announce that the Churchill Club has now transformed from a company structure into a not-for-profit. That means we can continue to assist those in emerging technologies – whether they be researching or developing, implementing into business, funding or regulating them – without a focus on commercial imperatives.


    Actually, no. Until now, it’s been structured as a company and run as a social venture. However, seeing us as a not-for-profit is an easy misconception to make given that we have always strived to be impartial and transparent, and act in the best interests of all advancing emerging technologies in Victoria.


    The Churchill Club will now have more opportunities to access funds. In the past, we have solely relied on funding from memberships, ticket sales and appropriate corporate partnerships to cover its expenses. Now, we are delighted to be eligible for a wider range of government grants and to have opened the door to a wider range of sponsors.


    Firstly, nothing but good.  Not-for-profit status means more members to connect with and being able to partner with government for bigger and better events.

    Secondly, we will continue to improve the quality of our events – and where possible, host special occasions. This year, we are thrilled to announce that the Churchill Club will be hosting a ‘Top Tech Trends 2018 Debate Dinner’ as part of the Victorian government’s Digital Innovation Festival, 6 September.

    Lastly (but not least), members now have the ability to play a greater role in how the club is run. You are invited to our AGM, and we encourage everyone to contribute. We will take feedback and suggestions seriously.

    CEO of the Churchill Club, Bec Kempster, says, “We recognise that Victoria needs a voice that represents all players in emerging technologies – regardless of their business maturity, or the industry they operate in. There’s a number of shared challenges that arise in relation to emerging tech including commercialisation, managing data security and privacy and overcoming user skepticism, through to funding and talent acquisition and retention. These aren’t just Start-up challenges, but are faced by all businesses. By facilitating conversations and sharing experiences we can seek to collectively address these challenges and improve the outcomes delivered from these technologies.”

    2018 marks an exciting year for the Churchill Club; we are committed to investing time and energy into accelerating industry like never before. If you are not a member of the Churchill Club and would like to be (or you would like to renew your membership), please visit our memberships page.

  • 3 Apr 2018 14:29 | Deleted user

    Beneath the bitcoin hype is a system that could truly change the way that businesses actually do business with each other and consumers, and the way consumers manage and transfer their own data - blockchain.

    The applications across industries appear to be endless - funding and delivering food to Syrian refugees, the world’s largest shipping company (Maersk) using it to track cargo and various banking institutions doing their own testing. It’s also been suggested that thanks to its transparent and decentralised nature, it will challenge the premise of capitalism.


    • What blockchain is and how advanced it is

    • What are the benefits of blockchain for B2B and B2C

    • It’s limitations and challenges

    • The role of government


    Rosa Thompson - Project Manager, ConsenSys & Co-organiser, Women in Blockchain Melbourne
    Dr Joseph Liu - Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Information Technology, Monash University
    Lyndon Gasking - Founder, Zoetic.AI
    Dr Donald Feaver –CTO,, Branded Trust Assurance Systems, LearningBase and TDS Web 3.0 Solutions


    1. The key features of blockchain include a decentralised, distributed ledger where there is consensus between all participants about the validity of a transaction and immutability once it has been recorded.

    2. Blockchain creates a completely transparent system and in theory, this transparency should mean that ethical and credible participants – or organisations - rise to the top, while the unethical and fraudulent are exposed.

    3. Brands where ethics and sustainability are core to their values, can differentiate themselves with records that blockchain enables them to have and can also make more informed decisions on who they do business with.

    4. Transparency does not equal credibility. Having the ability to upload raw data into the blockchain doesn’t necessarily provide context - how and where the analysis was completed and how was the data was validated before it was entered. The devil lies in the details.

    5. Decentralisation means no central point of regulation and authority. When working across borders, businesses are still dealing with countries that have different rules, regulations and standards. This can make it difficult to establish enough trust and confidence to reach consensus.

    6. A distributed ledger means participants having immediate and total access to data can create security issues. It can expose sensitive data to competitors and leave you vulnerable to theft of intellectual property.

    7. Businesses are trying to understand the value proposition of blockchain, alongside implications for strategy and consumer and business confidence.

    8. Using blockchain adds to the cost of goods and services which is inevitably passed on to the customer. At this stage, the equation doesn’t always stack up.

    9. Sophistication and innovation are needed to propel blockchain forward to where the value proposition and strategic implications are clear, and any costs passed on to the customer are minimised.

    10. Blockchain is in its infancy. Currently, the benefit lies when it’s seen as a tool that is part of a bigger solution working cohesively with other tools (like IoT).

  • 6 Mar 2018 14:30 | Deleted user

    The Clean Energy Target has been replaced by the National Energy Guarantee, Elon Musk built a giant lithium battery in South Australia, Tony Abbott thinks Global Warming might be a good thing, and our power bills keep climbing. With such a sustained hold on the news cycle and glaringly obvious (and serious) issues at stake, frustration and fatigue at energy policy is understandable.

    When we’re being inundated with doomsday statistics and the political merry-go-round on policy, it’s difficult to feel as though consumers have any control or influence.  However, as we discovered, options exist and we don’t necessarily have to sacrifice profitability or reliability to make the transition to sustainability.


    • The current state of energy in Australia and how we compare globally
    • The role of government and policy
    • Economics and the power of the consumer
    • Opportunities for businesses
    • Predictions for the future



    1. There are currently three coal-fired generators in Victoria, and over 300 registered generators supplying 97% of the electricity to the NEM.  The remaining 3% is supplied by the 1.6 million homes and businesses that have installed solar panels on their roofs.
    2. Renewable technology is now not only sophisticated enough to be commercially viable, it is also presenting as an essential alternative option for businesses that want to grow but can’t because the grid can’t support the supply of additional power.
    3. There are approximately 66 square kilometres of industrial roof space in Victoria.  If all of those roofs were covered with solar panels, they would contribute a third of the NEM electricity supply.
    4. The shift to renewable sources can feel like falling off a cliff. The good news is that while, like any systems change, the transfer is falling off a cliff, the cliff is actually not terribly high, and it’s becoming more dangerous not to jump.
    5. Renewable tech is now sophisticated enough that it has the potential to generate enough power to offset cost increases and even capitalise by storing additional power and off-selling to the retailer.
    6.  Sustainable Melbourne Fund are working with businesses to finance sustainable projects, providing flexibility in loan terms to bring forward commercial viability, ensuring positive cashflow sooner.
    7. Renewable means more than solar. Biofuel Innovations conducts research into waste valorisation streams, providing businesses with a locally-produced alternative to fossil fuel diesel.
    8. Seek transparency - having access to digestible data on your energy consumption and billing is key to making informed choices on retailers and energy sources.
    9. Companies like BidEnergy and GreenSync are demystifying convoluted price structures and billing, by offering businesses data aggregation and automation to help minimise costs.
    10. Take the opportunity to lean on your suppliers and peers to use renewable energy.

  • 21 Dec 2017 14:31 | Deleted user

    “I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career.
    I’ve lost almost 300 games.
    26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed.
    I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life.
    And that is why I succeed”’

    - Michael Jordan

    It is said that only two things in life are certain: death and taxes.

    We’d like to add a third to that list – failures - and it’s inevitable that come the end of another year, we all reflect on them.

    So we put failures under the microscope to ask how we learn the lessons they have to offer, in order to find our feet and strive again. What we heard were some tips on how to deal with failure, how to grow from it, and the common culprits behind it.

    Consider this your 2018 cheat sheet to failing upwards.



    “Assumptions are the mother of all evil”, may be the mantra of 2018.

    If you take only one piece of advice from this, it’s that most failures can be traced to an idea or assertion that hasn’t been tested or confirmed.

    An assumption could be that your business partners share the same vision as you, that your target market will just ‘get’ your idea, or that suppliers will distribute your product. They are not always hiding grossly in plain sight, and in fact most are the result of miscommunication. Unpacking even the most commonly held truths, may help you to avoid future failure.


    Passion, gut feelings and hard work are important - they drive your ideas to fruition and allow you to sacrifice for your end goal.  One thing they don’t do is guarantee success, yet in the midst of time and financial pressures, it can be easy to rely on these and skip the sometimes painstaking, time-consuming, or expensive process of due diligence.


    As well as being a useful tool for challenging the aforementioned assumptions, it can also uncover information that could change the direction of your idea, by informing it, or (unfortunately) revealing that there may be no market for it.


    Objectivity + Honesty = Understanding

    Anyone who has ever tried to create something commercial out of a passion knows that emotion is a crucial driver, but it can also be a barrier to uncovering why that something hasn’t worked.  

    It can stop you from shining an objective light on the process and decisions that led you to failure. It can stop you from asking questions of your colleagues and collaborators, and it can stop you from sharing your own thoughts or opinions.

    Finding a way to remove emotion from the situation, to share your honest opinion, can lead to an understanding of, if not the root of the failure, at least it’s contributing factors. Understanding why and how something went wrong, is key to moving on from it.


    Just as your emotional investment can stop you from critically investigating a failure, it can also stop you from identifying and accepting your individual role in it.

    By applying an objective filter to your actions and decisions, you can identify your weaknesses, areas of inexperience or lack of expertise. Ask the right, hard questions of yourself and be prepared to listen to external feedback as well.

    A person who can define and own their role in a failure is empowered to avoid their mistakes in the future, whereas someone who cannot is doomed to repeat them.



    Understanding and dealing with a failure leaves one with a lot of knowledge and the only way to avoid the same mistakes again is to use that knowledge to learn and adapt.

    Adapting can happen at an individual level and at a business level. You may have discovered that there is a skill-set you’re lacking that is preventing you from succeeding, or you may have gained a crucial insight from your market that changes the direction of your business.

    To support change, you can:

    • Reach out to mentors for advice and guidance - it’s likely they’ve been there before

    • Seek inspiration from different industries

    • Learn new approaches or methodologies from different skillsets or professions

    • Reach out to your competitors - it’s likely you might both be facing the same challenges


    Failure is, by definition, a lack of success, but this doesn’t have to be a permanent state, nor does it have to be the end of the story.

    If you consider failure to be a pit stop on the way to success, then the knowledge and lessons you learn become opportunities. It may be corny, and it may be clichéd but there is one high-profile failure that illustrates this point well:

    Google Glass
    Announced in 2012, and launched in 2014 at the retail price of $1,500, Glass was one of the first products in wearable tech.

    It has also been considered a rare commercial flop for Google.

    Consumer feedback centered on two themes:

    1. The glasses didn’t look good and;

    2. Wearing them made people feel uneasy (wearers were called ‘glassholes’).

    The product was withdrawn in 2015 and it would have been easy to relegate the unappealing eyewear to the archive of failed products (e.g. Vegemite’s iSnack).

    Instead Google’s Alphabet X began interrogating the product against the market data and an opportunity emerged - production. Glass Enterprise Edition (EE) is now being used by workers in factories for companies such as Boeing, DHL, and Volkswagon to improve productivity and safety. 


    • Cyber security: everyone from Medicare to Uber has been hacked of late and there is not only an opportunity to improve cyber security technology, but an absolute need for it to improve.

    • Jawbone: while it went into liquidation in July, don’t be surprised if we see more from the talent behind the tech that at its peak was valued at $4.2b. A leader in bluetooth and wearable technology, Jawbone paved the way for companies like FitBit.

    • Tesla: it’s not technically a failure yet, but it does seem as though production will be unable to meet the output required to be commercially viable. Though, as with Jawbone, we may find the success lies in the technology transforming and progressing the industry at large, and the talent goes on to something bigger.

  • 1 Dec 2017 14:32 | Deleted user

    Would you like a piece of a $13 trillion pie? That’s how much an expected, world-wide, $6 billion investment in IoT solutions will generate by the year 2025.

    The predictions and statistics around IoT are numerous and impressive. We can experience it in our homes, and have watched as disruptors reshape industries, or create new ones, with businesses built around it. But there is more to IoT than big numbers and high profile companies - it’s giving businesses of all sizes, in a broad range of sectors, more visibility and control over their operations than ever before.

    We explored:

    • What an IoT solution involves, and the business case for implementation

    • The industries and businesses implementing IoT

    • The benefits and impact of an IoT solution on business models

    • Legal and security issues associated with data collection, storage and exchange


    • Anat Efron, Ecosystems Director ANZ - Thinxtra

    • Matt Sinclair, Senior Technology Specialist - Telstra

    • Travis Crothers, CEO & Cofounder - Creator Global

    • Patrick Duffy, CEO - E Agri


    1. IoT consists of three layers – physical (device hardware), network (that transmits data collected at the physical layer to other connected devices) and application (protocols and interfaces used to identify connected devices and facilitate communication).

    2. Benefit of IoT is it enables the exchange of copious volumes of data and real time analytics, shining a light on systems, processes, or behaviours that may have previously been obscured.

    3. IoT also enables businesses to have greater control over their activities through continuous, remote monitoring.

    4. IoT applications fall into two categories - Information and analysis (i.e tracking behaviour) and automation and control (i.e. process optimisation).

    5. Before embarking on IoT develop a problem statement that has buy-in from all stakeholders and define what success looks like.

    6. Keep stakeholders engaged and educated.

    7. Consider maintenance capabilities and security. The latter should be a priority, discussed from the outset. Reset default passwords for devices!

    8. Be aware that IoT solutions have a domino effect. The deployment of the solution often requires a digital transformation, which can lead to an evaluation of existing systems and processes.

    9. IoT provides great opportunity for SMEs. Being nimble often means it’s easier to adapt to the impacts of an IoT solution, particularly one that is incremental, which can also allow for manageable costs. Consider yourself a testing ground for IoT providers.

    10. Don’t underestimate the transition involved for embarking on IOT - it's an organisational wide commitment, but one that comes with tangible benefits if executed well.

  • 3 Nov 2017 14:33 | Deleted user

    This week has been a busy week for Australian FinTech thanks to the Intersekt Festivaland Collab Collide Summit.

    Some of the key themes being discussed at the Summit included:

    • Blockchain
    • Crypto currencies
    • Payments
    • Open data
    • Regulatory environment
    • Superannuation
    • Digital identity

    Here’s key take-outs from the sessions The Churchill Club attended…



    • “If you’re in the machine, you’ll be in it forever” (Mike Smith, YBF Board)
    • Those relationships need to be with the right people who’ll take you on the journey


    • The real challenge banks face is that they’re encumbered by legacy systems built on accounting models rather than customer focused systems
    • Banks know EVERYTHING about us but the problem is their systems aren’t joined up. Why is it that you can buy a flight to Paris using your credit card and then have that same card declined when you check in at your Paris hotel two weeks later because you forgot to call the bank to share your travel plans?  
    • They need improved back-end systems that reduce costs and improve efficiencies
    • The opportunity here is for people who have worked in the banking system to step outside and develop solutions… calling all problem solvers!
    • If you’re B2C focused your competing with banks who have mammoth customer acquisition budgets


    • You need to look abroad from the outset, rather than trying to retrofit into their product down the track.
    • Your solution has to be competitive in the US and focused on Asia
    • We’re too focused on Melbourne versus Sydney and where’s Brisbane at. The question should be “what’s happening in Israel?”



    • The wealth creation model is changing as the ‘get a job-buy a house’ model doesn’t match the reality of millennials in the age of the gig-economy and a crisis in housing affordability
    • Technology can be applied to simplify the very complex world of super
    • Recent improvements in the competitive landscape and regulatory framework mean rollover and insurance frameworks have now been digitised
    • The scary fact – the industry is asleep and don’t believe disruption is happening. According to Mercer’s 2020 Super Fund Executive Report - Change or be Changed, 94% of fund executives do not think pressure from disrupters is a serious risk to their fund's future. Read more:


    • Current regulation is so complex that it creates a huge moat currently protecting the industry
    • Regulators have failed in trying to create transparency and comparability
    • Open data is needed by FinTechs. Data supplied to ASIC and APRA currently is aggregated, making it incredibly difficult to compare products on a like-for-like basis


    • “Super is one of Australia’s best financial inventions… why don’t we export super to the world” (Jess Ellerm, Zuper)
    • Product innovation that allows customers to choose investments that reflect their personal values
    • Greater improvement in knowledge and transparency of what different funds offer
    • Change in the power shift to that of businesses who provide the “plumbing” for super (ie tax, custody, trustees, etc)
    • Access to open data from other sources will provide greater power to FinTech disruptors and increase customer engagement
    • Customers will continue to care about track record and performance when selecting funds


    • The rise of the gig-economy and trends in future of work pose a large potential leakage of customers from super funds
    • Need products to make it easy to do this – currently nothing really exists in Australia
    • Single Touch Payroll should provide framework to make this process easier
    • In the US, StockSpots partner teamed up with Uber to develop product that allowed Uber drivers to easily contribute to their super via the Uber Driver’s App

    INDUSTRY WARNING – "Superannuation is at Ground Zero… they should learn from the mistakes their colleagues in banking made 4-5 years ago."



    • Blockchain and crypto faces huge issues around scalability, performance, resilience and privacy that still need to be resolved
    • Both Canada and Switzerland have investigated using Distributed Ledger Technology for wholesale payments only and both disregarded it as an option
    • Which is why in Australia the National Payments Platform (NPP) is being developed


    • We need to start with standards. Most countries are migrating to ISO20022 for standardisation
    • This is just a starting position


    • "We, regulators and industry, need to be mindful that we have younger generations, those under 25, who look at things differently.” (Loretta Joseph, ADCA)
    • There’s still key UX challenges around mobile payments. When it comes to splitting a restaurant bill, nothing’s as easy as throwing credit cards down on the table


    • Will continue to be used for larger value transactions for some time
    • We haven’t witnessed any real innovation in products
    • Growth of POS based systems like Afterpay are a response to this lack of innovation

    Bec Kempster attended the Collab Collide Summit 2017, as a guest of the Intersekt Festival.

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