Leading FinTech commentator and author Chris Skinner’s latest book – Digital Human: The fourth revolution of humanity includes everyone – was launched last night at an exclusive event at Rise London, featuring special guests Martin Arnold, Banking Editor at the Financial Times, Ashok Vaswani, CEO of Barclays UK and Li Wang, Head of Alipay EMEA.

Digital Human follows the best-selling Digital Bank, and examines the profound impact that digitisation has had on humanity and the financial services sector through financial inclusion and digital identities.

Central to the premise of Digital Human is the idea that we are in a revolution of humanity – the fourth revolution is becoming digital afterbecoming human, becoming civilized, and becoming commercial. The implications of this are enormous, and Chris sets out a visionary roadmap for how the sector will look in the future. Themes explored include:

  • Why are Africa and Asia ahead of the curve?In the world of digital finance, the biggest innovation isn’t coming from The West but rather from Asia and Africa
  • How will the digital revolution affect businesses? Digital is not business-as-usual done cheaper and faster with technology, but demands a complete rethinking of organisations’ operations and strategy
  • How far away are we from total financial inclusion? Technological change is driving substantial gains in financial inclusion, and unlike the industrial revolution everyone will have a chance of accessing wealth
  • Is seventy the new thirty?  In the future humans will routinely live to be over 150 years old –governments and institutions will need to rethink pensions, savings and other mainstream financial products, as well as the way that we work
  • How can large global banks stay relevant? Large banks must change their core systems due to new technologies from AI for back-office analytics and Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) in order to continue to lead
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Digital Human also includes the first-ever in-depth case study of AlipayAnt Financial’s mobile wallet that aims to be used by over two billion people across the globe. Chris examines how the brains behind Alipay and Ant Financial built the world’s first FinTech superpower, and interviews the company’s leading executives in the process. Digital Human also looks at how the brand is putting its ambitious vision into practice, from enabling Chinese tourists to visit Lapland using to helping Shenzen’s police force tackle traffic infringements.

On the launch of the Digital Human, Chris Skinner commented “7.5 billion people, who were all unconnected a decade ago are now able to connect immediately through the mobile network. By connecting through technology, we instantly turn the simple telephone into something far more intelligent – it becomes a trading machine. For the first time, we can all transact and trade with each other in real-time, one-to-one. This is a transformational revolution, and changes everything on planet Earth, including every business and every business model.

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This is why Jack Ma is one of China’s richest people when, twenty years ago, he was unemployable. It is why Vijay Shekar Sharma is one of India’s richest persons when, ten years ago, he was homeless. Digital access gives everyone on Earth opportunity so carpe diem, seize the day.” Chris continued.