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It’s no good calling fintech a game-changer anymore; it has changed the game. It has changed how finance is done by offering speed, automation and control. It’s put disruption at the heart of the finance & leasing world. The stats bear this out 82% of financial institutions expect to increase their fintech partnerships in the next 3 to 5 years, and 77% expect to adopt blockchain as part of their business model by 2020.

Fintech is the cutting edge, so it may seem strange to suggest that the best way to learn about fintech is to hit the books - but it’s true. The only way to comprehensively understand fintech is to read, read, and read more.

If you’re new to fintech, which many people are, you’ll want a comprehensive guide to start you off. The Fintech Book by Susanne Chishti and Janos Barberis offers such a guide; it provides information and advice no matter where you stand in the finance and leasing industry.

the fintech book

The information found in the book has been crowdsourced, with interviews from leading fintech experts. This crowdsourcing mirrors the reality of fintech, which relies on a community of trusted peers instead of one centralised hub such as a bank.

The folks that wrote this come from authoritative backgrounds, too, Chishti is the CEO of Fintech Circle, and Barberis is the founder of Hong-Kong based fintech accelerator SuperCharger.

At its heart, fintech is all about disruption, so if you want to use fintech in that way, then Breaking Banks by Brett King is probably a decent place to start. It focuses on moving away from traditional financial institutions, choosing to focus on radical alternatives, written by a guy who has written several books on the rapidly changing face of banking and was awarded American Banker’s Innovator of the Year in 2012.

breaking bank

In the book, King interviews several ‘leaders of the revolution’ who devoted their careers to changing how financial services operate through non-traditional means. There are also several pages devoted to examining fintech phenomena like peer-to-peer lending.

On the flip side is a book about how the brightest and best traditional financial institutions adapt and use the fintech revolution to their advantage. Smarter Bank: Why Money Management Is More Important Than Money Movement to Banks and Credit Unions, by Ron Shevlin. Shevlin, a veteran marketing consultant, shows how these ‘smarter’ banks are integrating fintech into their business which, as results show, has improved both their profitability and customer service.

smarter bank

The book's main topics include the advent of big data, how traditional financial institutions have changed how they engage with their customers and the growing prevalence and demand for e-banking and online payment. This book is one for the banking executives who want to shake up the way they do things and embrace fintech.

What we’ve looked at so far is how traditional banking is being subverted. However, Paul Vigna and Michael Casey’s The Age of Cryptocurrency: How Bitcoin and Digital Money are Challenging the Global Economic Order goes even deeper to examine how currency itself is changing through the power of Bitcoin - a topic that is of excellent resonance today, what the book also does is manage to look at Bitcoin for what it is which is that, it acknowledges the weaknesses of the system but also gets across that it has placed itself firmly in the financial world. They also look at Blockchain to open up banking and other financial services to the rest of the world.

age of cryptocurrency

That should give you enough reading to take up a weekend or three! You’ll come out the other side an expert in fintech and much more aware of the positives it can offer your finance business as opposed to seeing it as a threat to how we do things.

Are there any other books you’ve read around fintech that you think we should be talking about, let us know!

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