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UK Government to host international fintech conference as Brexit shadow looms

By Finextra

The UK Government is to host an international fintech conference in April in a bid to attract more investment into London’s financial technology hub.

The conference, which will feature fireside chats, panels and workshops, will seek to bring together fintech fiirms and potential investors, including Sovereign Wealth funds, family offices and high net-worth individuals.

Leading lights from the startup community will have an opportunity to showcase themselves in an exhibition space and during a pitch session.

Britain’s fintech sector has boomed in recent years, employing 61,000 people and generating billions of pounds in revenue, buts its status as Europe’s leading innovation hub is under threat from a potential exodus of talent and startup funding in the run-up to Brexit.

Paris just held its own two-day fintech forum, attracting more than 1,500 bankers, investors and entrepreneurs. France, like other European financial centres, is relaxing its rules and making overtures to London startups and international investment banks in a bid to lure them away from the UK capital.

While London still laps up the lion’s share of fintech funding in Europe, recent figures have indicated a slowdown as investors await the outcome of Brexit negotiations. On the international stage, the UK fintech scene is also falling behind other countries’ sectors in capital investment. In 2015 the country attracted £524 million of investment in fintech in 2015, compared to £3.6 billion by California and £1.4 billion by New York.

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Simon Kirby, says the conference is being held to help fill this gap and reassure investors that the UK remains a place to do business.

“The government is determined that London stays at the cutting edge of financial innovation and that’s why we will host a new, annual fintech conference to boost capital investment in one of our fastest growing sectors,” he says. “This will bring together hundreds of British fintech firms and investors from around the world and cement our position as the global fintech capital.

First appeared at Finextra

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