Yesterday the first Digital Finance Forum Liechtenstein took place in Vaduz. It featured high-profile speakers from Liechtenstein and Switzerland and attracted guests from all over the world.

The Digital Finance Forum Liechtenstein celebrated its premiere yesterday, on 12th December 2019. The event is part of the Finance Forum Liechtenstein and provides a platform for discussion about financial technologies and digital transformation.

The event focuses on industry 4.0 trends affecting the financial services industries in the German-speaking area. Part of the event were several presentations by high-profile speakers, a panel discussion, and breakout sessions during which companies presented their solutions and ideas. Swiss television journalist Reto Lipp moderated the event.

Like Always. Like Never Before. Banking will Transform

Liechtenstein’s Prime Minister Adrian Hasler kicked-off the event. In his opening speech, he highlighted the importance of digital technologies for the financial industry in Liechtenstein and beyond.

“It is the responsibility of the government to design a framework that enables market participants to bring their innovative ideas and business models to market,” said PM Hasler. “With measures such as the new Blockchain Act, we are creating legal certainty and at the same time providing an incentive for new innovations.” Hasler also mentioned he believes other nations will follow Liechtenstein’s example and create their own digital legislations. In fact, both neighboring Switzerland and Germany are already working on the details of their own legal frameworks.

After PM Hasler’s opening speech, Christian Keller, Managing Director Switzerland of IBM, covered topics ranging from blockchain and big data to artificial intelligence. He dived into opportunities and challenges for financial service providers, particularly in Liechtenstein and Switzerland. He spoke in particular about digital trends in banking such as Open Banking, Conversational Banking, Blockchain and Digital Assets, and new ways of working and structuring business processes.

After Keller’s presentation, Mike Dargan, Head of Information Technology at UBS, presented how Switzerland’s largest financial institution is mastering the balancing act between digital transformation and innovation – and what challenges are ahead for domestic banks and asset managers. Dargan kicked off his presentation with the slogan „Like Always. Like Never Before. Banking will Transform” – that would have been a good motto for the conference.

The following breakout sessions included workshops by FRED Financial Data AG & Multi Support, Refinitiv, 21.Finance, and the Office for Financial Center Innovation.

The event organizers intend to repeat the conference next year

The event organizers, which are the Finance Forum Liechtenstein and event agency Skunk, are satisfied with the conference and want to keep organizing a Digital Finance Forum Liechtenstein every year. The government also supports the event as well as several partner companies and associations from Liechtenstein and Switzerland.

The next significant event will be the Finance Forum Liechtenstein, which will take place on March 11th, 2020, for the sixth time. Among the speakers will be Sigmar Gabriel, former Minister of the Economy of Germany, Romeo Lacher, Chairman at Bank Julius Bär, Sabine Keller-Busse, Chief Operating Officer at UBS, and Liechtenstein’s Prime Minister Adrian Hasler. Over the last years, the event has attracted more than 600 decision-makers from the financial industry as well as numerous partners and associations.

Image: Daniel Schwendener