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Online seminar – What is the bank business model today?

On 18 November 2019, the Florence School of Banking and Finance organised an online seminar in cooperation with IESE Business School, answering the question ‘What is the bank business model today?’.

Today, banks are under siege because of persistently low interest rates, damaged reputation and, some segments still with, at times legacy assets from the crisis, increased regulatory burden and compliance costs, and the need to restructure to face digital disruption as well as new entrants. The result is low profitability in many jurisdictions, and in particular in Europe and Japan.

The online seminar examined, taking stock of the theoretical and empirical literature, how disruptive forces affect traditional banking functions, and what to expect in the future restructuring of banking. The event was built on the preliminary analysis of the report ‘What is the bank business model today?’ that will be published in 2020 by IESE and was presented by Xavier Vives, Director of IESE Business School’s Banking Initiative, who introduced and moderated the seminar.

After the introduction, Elena Carletti (Professor at Bocconi University and Scientific Director of the Florence School of Banking and Finance) discussed the current major challenges affecting the main functions of banks, including low or negative interest rates and financial regulation. A third challenge, digitalization and technology, was discussed in the following presentation by Stijn Claessens (Head of Financial Stability Policy & Deputy Head, MED, at the Bank for International Settlements), who addressed the impact of technology on financial services provisions, including the possible interplay between FinTech, Big techs and the policy issues arising. The final presentation was delivered by Antonio Fatás (Portuguese Council Chaired Professor of Economics at INSEAD) who discussed the implications on bank business models of the introduction of digital currencies, including non-bank digital money and stablecoins.


Joint online seminar by the Florence School of Banking and Finance and IESE Business School.