Bruno MacedoHead of Delivery Implementations at fiveºdegrees
Considered one of the top 50 thought leaders and Fintech influencers in the world, Bruno Macedo is currently head of delivery implementations at fiveºdegrees, founder of FusionAlgo, coordinator of AFIP – FinTech and InsurTech Portugal, speaker, advisor and influencer.
Previously, Bruno Macedo was founder and CEO of Macscribus, worked as product manager at Fincite, lecturer and chief of division at ISEG – Higher Institute of Economics and Management of the University of Lisbon, project manager at Kalam Research and Media, chief editor at the Washington DC Journal of Science and Information Technology, researcher in Information Systems Management and Information Security at the Washington DC Information Institute, Business Intelligence consultant at PwC cundus AG.
Graduated in Economics, master in Information Systems Management and finishing his PhD in Management, Bruno Macedo is one of the special guests at Connecting Stories at PARTTEAM & OEMKIOSKS.
1. With an extensive resume, can you tell us a little about your journey and professional experience, as well as the positions you currently hold?
It's a difficult question, but I' m very proud of it, because it has been a very interesting trip. I started from an early age to work in several summer jobs as any young person, from catering, computer work and even temporary management of a vacation camp in France.
During my studies at the Technical University of Lisbon (where I took my undergraduate, postgraduate and master's degrees), I mostly worked at the Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestão as head of division of the computer center, researcher, lecturer in various subjects and, finally, I also held positions as member of the school board of ISEG. For 13 years I studied, taught and worked for ISEG, also taking the opportunity to found my first company – Macscribus – in the area of research consultancy.
In 2013, I left for Duisburg (Germany) to work as a consultant in “Business Intelligence”, always keeping my functions as researcher and teacher at ISEG.
In 2014, I left at an urgent invitation to Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates), where I helped create and coordinate a center for Cybersecurity and Against Extreme Violence in the areas of North Africa and the Middle East, cooperating with various governments and international organizations in the search for various digital solutions from Cybersecurity, National Security, Fintech and e-governance.
After completing the project, I returned to Frankfurt (Germany) to help create and launch a Fintech in the area of roboadvisory (investment aided by algorithms) for banks and financial institutions. It was at that time that I started my career as a speaker, advisor and influence in the area of Fintech and Digital Banking (creating the project FintechStateofMind, which launched me a little around the world).
In 2017, I moved to the Netherlands to work as Head of Implementation Delivery and Thought-Leader at five°degrees (a company that develops core banking digital cloud software), never ceasing to teach and taking advantage of my position as coordinator at AFIP (Fintech Insurtech Portugal Association) and as Mentor at StartupBootCamp Amsterdam.
At the end of 2020, I gained courage to found in parallel a new company, FusionAlgo, which performs services in the Augmented Intelligence area.
2. Taking into account your various functions, which one fills you most on a professional level?
I have two. I usually joke that I'm like a superhero. I have these two identities: from 8am to 5pm I'm at five°degrees as head of delivery implementations and from 5pm I take my time at FusionAlgo and as speaker, advisor and influence.
3. How are all these responsibilities managed?
It is not easy. It has many costs on a personal level and demands a taste for what I do, as well as strict discipline. After years in Germany and the Netherlands, I'm much better than a few years ago, but it's still not perfect, not even close to that. Meetings and appointments are held to the minute and postponed if there are any deviations, even of a few minutes, so as not to create “snowballs”.
It is a discipline that is getting tighter and tighter and I think that, without it, it would not be possible to coordinate everything. I also learned to use two things: the first is the word “no”, to say “I won't make it, I don't have time” or even “I won't do it”. It can be difficult to use it, but it's very important. The second is a kind of “important vs. urgent” mental matrix that I have and that guides me, in order to try to manage expectations with the people I work with and with those who are part of my personal life.
Finally, it is important to mention that it is a continuous learning and requires that those who work and live with me understand.
4. How do Fintech companies operate?
Fintech companies are a relatively recent phenomenon, having emerged with the financial crisis of 2008. They are essentially technological companies focused on the financial area. The vast majority are guided by an extremely agile way of working, supported by innovation and technology and data oriented. This is because they seek to break with the traditional model of financial companies and the banking sector more accustomed to a much slower and cautious step.
In recent years, the fact that there has been a huge success in the area of Fintech and a huge investment, has given rise to a completely new generation of sub-industries (Paytec, Wealthtec, Regtech, etc.) and companies that have also created new types of professionals that are a mixture of knowledge in technology, banking and financial sectors, software, regulation and consulting.
5. Do you believe that there has been an evolution of these companies? What challenges have they found?
Yes, without a doubt. I usually describe the Fintech area as the “Perfect Storm”, with more than 12 thousand Fintechs created in the last years. In practice, what used to be departments of a large bank are now authentic interconnected industries of rapid technological and regulatory evolution.
It is very difficult nowadays to keep up with all the areas, jargon, regulation, innovations and services available within the Fintech industry. It is even more difficult with the opening of data access with the phenomenon of massive APIs, open banking and having to regulate this opening with constant regulations like RGPD and others.
Along the way, what I have found as the biggest challenge is that we are new companies, with “new” technology, strategies, methods and professionals messing with a thousand-year-old financial and banking industry, which is always trying to keep safe and efficient because it has a huge impact on everyone's daily life.
6. How can Fintech companies revolutionize the financial market?
As mentioned, there are numerous areas where Fintech has revolutionized the financial market (see the impact of blockchain technology, for example, in cryptomoeda or the phenomenon of neobanks like the Revolut and the N26), because in its genesis Fintech uses technology and data access to generate new services.
As an example, these are just some of the new industries created by the Fintech phenomenon: Taxtech, Regtech, Insurtech, Proptech, Pensiontech, Wealthtech, AdvisoryTech, Tradetech, Banktech (CoreBanking), Paytech. Only the area of payments is huge, and there are now companies in this area far superior to banks in billing and market weight.
Fintechs with the greatest weight in the financial market revolution are, without a doubt, the ones that manage to create “cognitive” solutions that rely on data to create new ultra-personalized services and that exchange the power of decision and control for the client (in practice they empower them).
7. How can fiveºdegrees distinguish itself in the market?
Five°degrees has distinguished itself by its experience and knowledge in the banking area combined with its ability to connect the “legacy world” with the “present and future world” of banks and financial institutions. By offering our extremely complete and integrated digital corebanking platform (Matrix), five°degrees is able to respond not only to existing banks and financial institutions that want to make the digital leap, but also to new ones that want to enter the market with a tool and support compatible with current and future challenges.
8. You have been considered one of the top 50 thought leaders and Fintech influencers in the world. What does this recognition mean to you?
For me it is, undoubtedly, my greatest achievement in recent years and I celebrated it as if I had finished the course at a university. It is the fruit of years of work, hours on end that I perform in my personal time, without PR agencies or any monetary investment and totally based on friends, family, colleagues, followers and the attempt to share knowledge. It's gratifying to be able to pass on knowledge on these topics and attract new stakeholders, but I recognize that I owe a great deal to those who support and share me.Without them, I wouldn't have achieved it.
9. What projects do you have in mind for the future?
FusionAlgo is an old passion that makes me bring the technology and potential of Augmented Intelligence and other Cloud technologies to the community in general. Undoubtedly, I will dedicate a great part of my future to it. In addition, I would like to finish my PhD, write a book and, of course, return to Portugal, if possible.
10. As PARTTEAM & OEMKIOSKS is a leader in the development and export of digital billboards and multimedia kiosks to the international market, what is your opinion about PARTTEAM & OEMKIOSKS, its products and its internationalization strategy?
I have been accompanying PARTTEAM & OEMKIOSKS for the last years. I think it has been an extraordinary evolution to see its products and services spread all over the world. This without forgetting the human side, because in any CEO or company post, the whole team is mentioned as the soul of the company and the reason for its success.
With the global success I have seen, I can only say that it seems to me that it has been a right strategy and, of course, it will always have to adapt.
I hope that, in the future, FusionAlgo can also be part of its ecosystem.
Connecting Stories is an editorial space led by PARTTEAM & OEMKIOSKS which consists of conducting exclusive interviews, directed at influential personalities who work in different sectors of activity.
The project, conceived by PARTTEAM & OEMKIOSKS, includes the publication of success stories, through small interviews with influencers who want to share details about their projects, opinions, plans for the future, among other subjects.
The idea is to connect stories, share knowledge, develop networking and generate content that can provide new visions, opportunities and ideas.
Founded in 2000, PARTTEAM & OEMKIOSKS is a world renowned Portuguese IT company, manufacturer of indoor and outdoor multimedia kiosks, self-service equipment, digital billboards, interactive tables and other digital solutions, for all types of sectors and industries. To know more about our story, click here.