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2018’s been a really interesting year for us from a financial institutions perspective.
Despite some of the uncertainty, or continued uncertainty around Brexit, and some of the headwinds that, that some of our clients have faced, we’ve continued to see good strong growth in the sector.
So in 2018 we saw two really big, opportunities for our insurance sector, one was in the run off space, particularly in Europe, where Solvency II and, continued soft pricing are driving the run off portfolio transactions. Then on the general and life side, working with our Barclaycard colleagues to really partner with some of our general and life insurance clients, to look at how our payments products can improve their customer experience.
On the FinTech and the payments side of things, driven by technology, open banking, changing customer dynamics, we saw, some great opportunities to continue to work with that sector, both on the payments and effects liquidity side of things. Really interestingly as well, some strategic collaboration opportunities and particularly I would pull out Market Invoice where we worked with our colleagues in BUK to extend their SME banking proposition by partnering with Market Invoice.
The big challenge I see for 2019, I guess, is no surprise and it’s going to be Brexit and what shape that finally takes. What our clients want to know is that, working with Barclays, they’re going to have continued access to the markets they need within Europe.
The opportunities in 2019, whilst I said Brexit was a challenge for our clients, I think it’s also a great opportunity for us to, to strengthen and, and broaden our relationship with our FIG clients.
Under our Barclays Bank Ireland subsidiary, fast forward to mid-2019 and we’ll have a pan-western European proposition, ah, which I think puts us in a great position to continue to be a strategic partner for our clients, both in the UK and across Europe.
In 2019 I’m really excited for the FIG franchise within the corporate bank and we will continue to deliver thought leadership, both through our sector focus and the events that we continue to run globally.
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