Can you give our audience a teaser of the topics and POV you plan to talk about at our conference?
I'm planning to cover the emerging commerce sector. Commerce today is mainly e- and m-commerce, but we're already seeing a big shift towards voice commerce, and IoT will make a big push towards seamless transactions in the context of smart homes and smart cars for consumers. I'm also covering how commerce will be used for AR and VR experiences.
Tell us about what you are working on right now.
I'm sitting between Mastercard's global product development team and its merchant and PSP partners, making sure that Mastercard's digital payment products are meeting the needs of both traditional retailers as well as the new digital first on-demand economy. We're working on use cases for app payments, web payments, voice commerce, chatbot payments, smart car and home payments.
Please tell us about your background and how you got into your field. What is your story of how you got here?
"It was really by chance. I was doing e-commerce and traditional FMCG marketing at startups and SMEs in Germany, Austria and Saudi Arabia. I met a Google employee at a party and he asked me if I was interested in joining them. I wasn't too excited to join a bunch of nerds, but was bored at my job and ultimately decided to give it a go. I always had a passion for tech gadgets and future technology, so fast forward I worked at Google for five years in Dublin, Berlin and NYC. I then moved on to Pizza Hut to work on Emerging Technologies for them (Autonomous Car deliveries, IoT orders - think of Amazon dash button for Pizza, Alexa Pizza Hut skill, ordering via chatbots on Twitter and Facebook etc.).
After two years at Pizza Hut, I got bored with corporate America and didn't know what I wanted to do next and decided to go on a one year sabbatical. I travelled to 23 countries and 75 cities on 4 continents and worked with Business Insider to write Innovation and Emerging Commerce country reports.
After a year of traveling, Mastercard reached out to me to start a new department for them and become the bridge between product and partners. I was excited and said yes, and 18 months in, that excitement is still there. "
In the next five years, what are the most important things to keep and eye on in your field? Why?
"Mastercard is already buying AI companies left and right, to make sure our products evolve at a higher speed in the future. It also helps with predictions and reducing risk - which is huge in Fintech in general.
Otherwise, voice commerce and IoT will open a lot of doors for companies in the future and change they traditional ways of 4P marketing and distribution.
Blockchain will play a huge role for cross-border payments, manufacturing chains as well as the insurance economy. Mastercard is working towards many patents in this area. "
Who (person or company) do you feel is doing exciting stuff in your field? Why?
"I love how Lemonade and Robin Hood took commodity products (stock investment, insurance) and turned them into beautiful consumer experience products.
I like where Stripe and Square are going with their additional services to cater to the gig economy and SMEs in general.
You need to keep an eye out on Amazon, Apple and Google, who in the future could become bank equivalents and take a lot of business away from traditional banks. "
How do you hope Tulip Conference will be better than your typical event/conference? Why?
I'm hoping for inspiring personal stories and success stories that don't follow the normal script of Fortune 500 companies.