Most of the today’s startups don’t know borders – Innovators want to just go where other innovators are, especially in fields like fintech. The relative ease at which startups can move around has also caused plenty of countries and cities to try to attract the freshest talent. The latest attempt is by Luxembourg, which has just opened a new innovation hub.
The new fintech innovation hub
The Luxembourg House of Financial Technology (LHoFT) celebrated the opening of its Innovation Hub and co-working facility. The big unveiling took place at the House of Entrepreneurship in Kirchberg.
The hub has received over 50 applications, from which it will pick 10 fintech startups. The ten startups will be able to set up at the LHoFT’s Innovation Hub, where they will be mentored to fruition. The venture has private and public backing.
Some of the founding partners include BCEE, KPMG, PwC and Deloitte Digital. The venture also has the backing of Chamber of Commerce, the City of Luxembourg and the University of Luxembourg.
Fintech startups will also be able to participate in ‘hackathons’, developer sandboxing and the hub will be launching its own Fintech Awards later down the line.
Nasir Zubairi, LHoFT’s chief executive, said at the launch event, “We will work with the community to build up a soft-landing platform to make it as easy possible for fintech firms to set up in Luxembourg”.
Finding the next big thing
Fintech startups that have applied for the hub offer innovative ideas in a range of field. LHoFT’s is aiming to have startups in sectors such as digital investing and portfolio management, blockchain applications, financial services artificial intelligence and regulation technology.
The hub will be unveiling some of these projects in the coming months. Zubairi mentioned during the event that a number of projects are just waiting for further proposals. “Just today, we submitted a proposal to the European Commission with 25 partners…for a truly epic financial services big-data platform,” he said.
Aiming for the top innovator spot in EU
Luxembourg is actively looking to become the next big innovation hub for fintech startups in the EU. H.E. Pierre Gramegna, Luxembourg’s Minister of Finance, spoke at the event and told the audience, “The LHoFT will play a key role for the development of Fintech in Luxembourg and the digital transition of our financial sector. The LHoFT will further reinforce Luxembourg’s attractiveness, particularly for startups.”
It’s not a surprise for other EU countries to attempt attracting fintech innovation, ever since the UK decided to leave the Union. Brexit has already caused some startups to abandon London and places like Luxembourg might become ever more attractive for future startups.
However, Luxembourg is not alone in trying to attract new fintech talent. Ireland is also aiming to increase its attractiveness to the firms. A recent Silicon Republic post outlined the different reasons the country is perfectly positioned to become the new fintech hub in the EU.
It looks like the fight for securing the newest innovators is on.