By: M.S.Yatnatti: Editor and Video Journalist Bengaluru: Fintech startups have struck gold with Indians buying more than 1,000 kg of the yellow metal through mobile apps in the past year. Digital payment companies Paytm, PhonePe and tmw have seen a surge in customers buying gold on their platforms in recent months. PhonePe, which started selling gold in December, has sold more than 250kg of the precious metal and has a customer base of 4 million. Paytm -- the largest player after it launched its gold offer in July -- has sold 800kg to 1.5 million customers. It sources gold from a joint venture between Indian bullion importer MMTC and Swiss gold refiner PAMP. At tmw, customers can buy 24K gold for an amount that is as little as Re 1, or for about Rs 10,000, and they can store it in virtual vaults for up to five years without storage fees. Reportedly an expert in digital payments, who did not want to be named, said, "Gold is always a hot commodity, and fintech players would benefit from the rate fluctuation in gold, arbitrage and bullion trading. It can be used as an underlying asset to induce banks to sanction fresh loans. Also, there is the price point ,it's cheaper digitally. Companies needn't spend money on premium retail space like swanky showrooms or hire salespeople.” He added, "Fintech players are following in the footsteps of banks, for whom gold sales was an innovative customer acquisition strategy a decade ago. It's interesting that digital players have convinced customers since gold is an emotional purchase with associations of trust and long-standing brand names.”. . Free online courses from University of Hong Kong.HKUx on edX is starting a course onIntroduction to FinTech:Learn from leading academics and practitioners from around the world about the innovations, technology and regulation driving the transformation of finance. This course isavailable at www.edx.org/course/introduction-to-fintech#what-you-will-learn.Over the past decade emerging technologies, paired with massive changes in regulations, have driven an unprecedented transformation of finance around the world. This process is happening more rapidly in China and Asia than anywhere else. This course is designed to explore FinTech fundamentals and help make sense of this wave of change as it happens. New players such as start-ups and technology firms are challenging traditional players in finance, bringing democratization, inclusion and disruption. Companies engaged in social media, e-commerce, and telecommunications, as well as, companies and start-ups with large customer data pools, creative energies, and technical capacities, have brought competition to the existing financial infrastructure and are remaking the industry. These transformations have not only created challenges but also unprecedented opportunities, building synergies with new business and regulatory models, particularly in emerging markets and developing countries. To meet these changes, 21st-century professionals and students must be equipped with up-to-date knowledge of the industry and its incredible evolution. This course - designed by HKU with the support of SuperCharger and the Centre for Finance, Technology and Education - is designed to enable learners with the necessary tools to understand the complex interaction of finance, technology and regulation. In this course, through a series of video lectures, case studies, and assessments you will explore the major areas of FinTech including, beginning with What is FinTech before turning to Money, Payment and Emerging Technologies, Digital Finance and Alternative Finance, FinTech Regulation and RegTech, Data and Security, and the Future of Data Driven Finance, as well as, the core technologies driving FinTech including Blockchain, AI and Big Data. These will set the stage for understanding the FinTech landscape and ecosystem and grappling with the potential direction of future change.
What you'll learn: The major areas in FinTech, including Money and Payment, Digital Finance and Alternative Finance.Major technological trends, including cryptocurrencies, Blockchain, AI and Big Data.FinTech Regulation and RegTech.The fundamental role of Data and Security in data-driven finance .Business and regulatory implications of technology for the financial industry.How regulations and RegTech are applied.Ways to analyse and evaluate what is driving technology innovation in Finance .How new technology impacts economies, markets, companies, and individuals. Take this course for free on edx.org.Established in 1911, the University of Hong Kong (HKU) is the territory's oldest institute of higher learning. For more than a century, the University has committed itself to creating knowledge, providing education, and serving society. It has grown with Hong Kong and generations of our graduates have helped shape the city from which the university takes its name. Today, HKU is internationally renowned as a research-led comprehensive university, with frontier research endeavours and scholarly achievements that have won it worldwide acclaim.As a leading international institution of higher learning in Asia, HKU strives to attract and nurture outstanding scholars from around the world through its excellence and innovation in teaching and learning, research and knowledge exchange, and its contributions to the advancement of society and the development of leaders through global presence, regional significance and engagement with the rest of China.University of Hong Kong MOOCs: Browse free online courses in a variety of subjects. University of Hong Kong courses found below can be audited free or students can choose to receive a verified certificate for a small fee. Select a course to learn more.www.edx.org/school/hkux.The BSE Institute hosted a national conference titled 'Fintech and the Future of Money' to discuss a disruptive development in the field of finance. The conference was organised in order to explore the impact, range, and nature of changes that the Fintech (financial technology) revolution is likely to bring about.The aim of the conference was to bring together industry experts and share insights into the sector and tackle some of the trends and topics in the Fintech industry. It was the first in a series of discussions by the BSE Institute among experts from the public, private sectors and academia on FinTech and its impact on financial services industry. One major FinTech development we've been keeping our eye on, and will almost certainly rewrite the Financial Services rulebook, is "block chain”. And although it sounds like a defensive move in a sports game, blockchain is, in fact, a distributed database of computers that maintains records and manages transactions.So forget disruption as an end goal - it's just a buzzword. Re-imagine and transform your business, products, services and industry by focusing on solving the problems of your customers better. If what you've done is worthy, disruption will follow naturally.