While at the SOMESSO event last week I filmed Matthias Kroner, CEO of Fidor Bank. In this 9 min 43 sec video, Matthias explains the difference between the classical bank and the new form of community based bank.
Fidor is the first bank of its kind to have obtained a full banking license in Germany. This allows it to operate throughout Europe since regulation 'travels' across borders. As a virtual operation, this gives Fidor immediate and direct access to a market of 350 million people. Today, operations are restricted to Germany where it is building out and testing different services.
What makes Fidor unique is that to use Matthias' words: 'It is the people who are the bank.' It will be interesting to see how this concept develops. For example, will it be able to compete with traditional services that include online banking, ATM access and safety deposit box facilities. Right now, Matthias says he is going after the mass market retail banking segment.
Having spent an entire article calling out Enterprise 2.0, it is good to see an innovative example of how community can be turned sideways to create a new business model that offers genuine differentiated value.