LFP144 – Convergence: The Innovative Combination of Different Silos w/Sam O’Connor CEO Coconut


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By Mike Baliman. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

So far Fintech has lionised technologies – APIs, Open Banking, AI/ML and so forth. But from a different perspective these are just glues to connect things that haven’t been connected before to make new propositions not previously possible. Although this has been touched on so far – marketplaces aren’t the best example – after all marketplaces are tens of thousands of years old.

In this episode we are joined by serial entrepreneur Sam O’Connor, CEO of Coconut to discuss convergence – the gluing together of components which were previously seen as different things.

Our smartphones glue together things we would have historically done in different places using different devices – camera, mp3 player, and emails for example, In the same way Coconut are focusing on micro-businesses into which all of us indies seem to need to fold ourselves these days and combining banking, accounting and tax in one place – items which historically would have been seen as different propositions.

Topics discussed include:

  • the morning after the night before – how the election looks the morning of the results
  • a shoutout for Tea2You Borough Market
  • Brexit certainty and uncertainty in the new world of Boris I
  • positive visions for the future as opposed to managing the present
  • in or out the EU regulations are like a black hole distorting space around them
  • open banking as an example of UK pioneering ahead of the game
  • in 3-5yrs time we could be a lot better or a lot worse – we shall see…
  • British long-term strengths at muddling-through
  • comparison of the British East India Company and the French East India Company formation as archetypal history
  • state-centrism, technocracy and top-down approaches to governance on the Continent as opposed to British bottom-up, decentralised
  • Sam’s career journey as an entrepreneur
  • the rationale behind the formation of Coconut
  • the challenges of being an indie – how there is a genuine problem to be solved
  • accountancy software MegaCos market caps around $100bn
  • “90% of new SME’s since 2000 are non-employing businesses”
  • 5.7m SMEs in UK of which 5m are owner-managed businesses
  • gluing together different silos – example of Coconut
  • accounting historic changes to cloud
  • importance of platforms like Amazon or Uber opening up their platforms data
  • unexpected benefits that came from combining functionality in the smartphone
  • example of payments and invoicing and additional functionality
  • have App Banks been doing this well – product-push versus demand-pull
  • customer acquisition
  • reconceptualisations of eg banking data as amounting to real-time accounting information
  • Coconuts running assessment of P&L as an example of “real-time accounting” as opposed to collecting cashflow data and then finding out what the accounts say at the end of the year
  • how technology and market shift to more portfolio careers are overlapping
  • the highest earner on Substack earns over $0.5m p.a
  • shoutout for Smart Pension’s tie-up with Revolut
  • Coconut are customers of Smart Pension 🙂
  • why Coconut is called Coconut…
  • Coconuts planned fund-raising in 2020 Q1

And much more more 🙂

Share and enjoy!

134 episodes