Fintech Trends Dossier: Challenges of the Challenger in the Banking Industry

Covid-19 has accelerated bank closures but also fintech developments across all regions in Western Europe and the US. The pandemic has changed how people bank – it might not be (yet) permanent but the crisis is an accelerator for fintech trends like mobile-only banks. This fintech trend dossier is part of our client-exclusive Digital Dossiers at Wildstyle Network.

What is a challenger bank?

Challenger banks are tech companies. They leverage software to innovate, digitize and streamline retail banking. Challengers use digital distribution channels, typically mobile, to offer competitive retail banking services such as checking and savings accounts, loans, insurance, and credit cards. Well, that’s where these fintechs started with their business models.

Let’s take a look at the fintech trends, especially at the state of those who challenge the status quo and the traditional way of banking. Specifically, why they’re continuing to gain traction, how they’re expanding product sets beyond debit cards and digital accounts, and why they’re a threat and an example to traditional banks.

Traditional banks are not sleeping behind the wheel. They’re already responding. By mimicking the digital, structural, and behavioral trends of today’s challenger banks. This paves the way for an end of cash. It has never been closer.

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10 quick tips for your videos, to make people stay on your site

You are probably reading this article on your iPhone in a stuffed subway?! Youtube Statistics says that half of YouTube views are on mobile devices and that the mobile revenue on YouTube is up over 100% y/y.

This insight is very relevant for all and any video creation styles: Mobile video means thinking efficiently because it’s made for people who won’t spend ages (=anything that lasts longer than 90 secs) on watching a startup’s explanation Video – with average time length of 1 to 4 minutes.

Wildstyle Network – (the creative agency in Brooklyn/US and Dresden/DE behind this blog) created dozens of such explainer videos to help Microsoft, Samsung and startups explain their products in a visual way. Such videos also help to keep your audience busy on your site, extending digital dwell time. Let’s quickly explain the how and why’s behind these epic cinematic pieces in a top 10 list for your video styles:

1. Infographic
Pretty often they illustrate complex facts using simple infographics.

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Wildstyle’s Chalkboard Love And Anti-Digital UX Design Desk

After posting a chalkboard picture on my Facebook page, I was later asked by a 22y old UI design applicant why we’re working on a chalkboards and if the dust isn’t destroying keyboards or Wacom screens – instead of using UX and wireframing tools like UX PIN, Photoshop or Sketch?! Sure, he wanted to demo his skills but after chatting about pros and cons of working analog, it just came to me that the traditional way of sketching wireframes and UX is about to become outdated. Hey, I think it’s fatal to underestimate this way of sketching, especially the sexiness of dried chalk on your hands, the slowdown of the process and emptyness of a white paper.
Let’s summarize this discussion in a longer blogpost including seven of our favorite tools which we use during work in our Wildstyle Atelier.

1. A Chalkboard Helps You To Focus And To Team-Work


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We’re reviewing all our start-up adventures, developments and even our mental health on a regular basis. This time we thought it’s helpful for others who are planning to run the same path as we did. We (the Team like to share some insights with you every first Friday of the month.

Co-Founders Steve & Alex

Steve Nitzschner (CXO and Co-Founder) and Alexander Bierling (CEO and Co-Founder of

1. VCs, thanks for turning us down in 2012. Start-Ups: Keep pitching but try to avoid to raise capital too early!

(by Alexander Bierling, Co-Founder and CEO)

In 2012, right after the end of the financial crisis but in the middle of the Series-A/Angel money crunch, we’ve been approaching all kinds of investors to finance the next steps of our new venture. We spend a third of our time over the year on researching investors, building relationships, preparing pitch decks (executive summary and 15 page slider) and meeting and presenting. All while we’ve been working on the product at the same time. We thought we’re ready with a MVP (most viable product) and ready to launch with a bunch of features to improve life.

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A And For New York

For sure, it’s overdue to post here on Bagaboo. But here’s the reason: After building my first company Wildstyle Network and my first two ventures Little Bird and Ad Portable (all of them are in the business for more than 2 years), it was time to move on to a new adventure that I founded with my partner Alex. This start-up goes by the name of COMPASS. Compass is a new kind of mobile social media network that portfolios your taste – it’s social, it’s local, it’s mobile and it’s made in Brooklyn.

A Start-up? Why did I do that? Why now?
I spent most of my time thinking about Communities, wether it’s Xbox LIVE or Windows Phone or refurbishing the Samsung Mobilers program. And I always missed certain opportunities to try out new solutions or user experiences that I had in mind. Things which Facebook, nor Twitter, nor Path or any other network can’t manage: Organizing my local relevant experiences and making my desktopbrowsing experience releveant for real life, real friends, verything that is real. All combined in a beautiful UI (user interface) with a more sophisticated UX (user experience). Especially hand crafted for mobile use.

Unveiling at The Next Big Thing in NYC
COMPAS_at_NBT_Q&A_Stv5On Sept., 20th we’ve been presenting Compass, formally known as Project Hugleberry) for the first time to a larger audience. Media networks like Wall Street Journal, New York Times (among others) were present. Five minutes of powerpointing the product (the real on-device demo didn’t work due problems with the Apple TV). The first mobile only solution had its five minute of fame at the US’ media council – The Next Big Thing (Marisa & Joel – again, thank you for the opportunity)!

Project Hugleberry, a pivot and a vision

We’ve been starting with COMPASS – formally known as Project Hugleberry in April. We’ve been founding a C-Corp headquartered in New York but as a Delaware firm.
From the very first minute on we’ve been following a specific idea: Changing the world with a sustainable and sustainability solution that should have made the world and our behaviour more planet friendly. A database and algorithm which we’ve been developing in the past allowed us to connect any local consumption (i.E. products or locations) with data about a its sustainability. To make this data more reliable, we’ve partnered with the University of St. Gallen.

Getting feedback in New York, San Francisco and L.A.
We’ve been pitching the idea and prototype in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles.
Soon we realized that sustainability was a great idea, Project Hugleberry got early buzz in the community and was manifested in our hearts. But unfortunately it was ahead of its time. Wether VCs (venture capitalists) nor users were ready for this ambitous planet saving tool. After six months, we took a closer look on the metrics and made an “ectracting” decision. The team decided to move on and extract the most working and best parts from this idea which was lying in front of us but we haven’t seen it. Project Hugleberry was build on a “compass”. A sharable list of locations and local products. This compass, a simple collections of the things you like, is now a stand alone app and a start for an own digital eco system to sync your digital with your real life.

Compass was born but our vision hasn’t changed. We will be the first company to fully sync digital content with your real life – to make better decisions and be inspired by things and people around us.

visit: (become an ambassador, get the beta)
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Post at (will soon become CompassTo)