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top fintech trends

BillGO Execs Discuss Top Fintech Trends

As it was establishing itself as a leading fintech, BillGO assembled a leadership team made up of some of the financial services industry’s best and brightest.

That is why we devoted much of the last year interviewing our leadership team and asking them to share their insights on current trends shaping the fintech landscape, how financial institutions are evolving and how BillGO is helping modernize bill pay technology. The resulting conversations covered a lot of ground: the importance of UX in digital banking, the current competitive climb to the “top of the wallet,” the need for fintechs to embrace banking compliance, the coming real-time revolution and more.

What follows is a recap of those conversations, complete with many thought-provoking quotes our executives shared. Please take a scroll, read through the best of the best and click on the links to see the full interviews.  

Kimberly Hebb, Chief Risk Officer

Prior to joining BillGO, Kim served in a top leadership role at the OCC. In her interview, she discusses the current regulatory environment, how it’s impacting fintech innovation and more.  

“Most of the legislation and regulations that govern the banking space were written before the systems, rails, modalities that are in use today - or those that are in development. In many cases, the regulations are “silent”, which is a little scary for financial institutions (FIs). That silence should scare fintechs a little too.”

Read Kim’s full interview here.

Ken Salazar, BillGO’s Chief Revenue Officer

In his interview, Ken draws on his extensive experience in card-based payment solutions as well as the interactions he has with industry execs where they talk bill pay technology and how FIs can fully leverage bill pay data to better serve their customers.

“In many cases, an FI’s marketing team can spend millions of dollars on acquiring customers, or expanding them to new products. Meanwhile, a modern bill pay platform can get a customer re-engaged … three times faster.”

Read Ken’s thoughts on how customers benefit from better bill pay.

Mary Anne Keegan, Chief Marketing Officer

Mary Anne is a seasoned leader in the financial services industry. In her interview, she explains why the customer experience is key to success in digital banking and what drives her passion for fintech marketing.

“FIs that offer modern bill pay can help customers better meet financial obligations, save money and improve their financial wellness. This in turn builds consumer loyalty and cultivates a frame of mind that nurtures long-term customer relationships. The more entrenched I am as a customer with my financial services provider, the more opportunities the institution has to make recommendations to improve financial wellness and drive retention.”

See Mary Anne’s advice for FIs to build emotional ties to their customers.

Click Here to Learn What’s Top of Mind for Today’s Fintech Leaders.

John Brady, Chief Architect

John discusses the evolving real-time payments landscape and the key role bill pay plays in strengthening customer relationships.

“When I look at the U.S. financial services industry, I think real-time payments represent the single greatest catalyst for the next mass modernization.

“Many legacy banks, and even some newer ones, just aren’t set up to handle real-time payments. Those that are will have a significant competitive advantage, but I think we’ll see a lot of rapid modernization across the board as banks position themselves for real-time capability. We’re on the verge of this wide transformation, and we’re starting to see it take shape in bill pay.”

Read why some FIs are slow to modernize their tech stacks.


Matthew Thomason, SVP Card Solutions

In his interview, Matt discusses BillGO’s Intelligent Card Management capability and why it’s a game-changer for card issuers, billers and consumers.

“The biggest top-of-wallet challenge every institution faces is they have no control over how and when their customers use the cards they issued...Intelligent Card Management gives the FIs and fintechs more power by introducing “in-app provisioning” to the issuer’s app for subscriptions, billers and ecommerce merchants. This helps move a bank- or fintech-issued card to the coveted top-of-wallet slot. This, in turn, helps further strengthen the relationship institutions have with their customers while adding a ton of value to everyone in the ecosystem.

Get Matthew’s take on smarter payments.


Matt Raile, Senior Vice President Fraud and Bill Pay Operations

With 20+ years of experience in the financial services industry, Matt offers his perspective on new and emerging cyberthreats and how the industry is doing in its efforts to combat them.  

“Having been on the bank side for more than twenty years, I know that — for the most part — many FIs work with fraud prevention providers that operate in a black box. They have their own ‘secret sauce’ and many of those aren’t especially transparent or forthcoming with the FIs.”

“In many cases, the fraud prevention providers want the FIs to keep coming back and renewing their subscriptions, but the other reason they have this mentality is because they don’t want the FIs to take too close of a look at anything that might shake their confidence.”  

Read the full interview here.


Russ Chacon, Senior Vice President Product

Having served as an executive at Fiserv, PayPal, Early Warning, Bank of America and others, Russ draws on more than 20 years of industry experience in his conversation, covering a wide array of topics trending in financial services.

“The past year has forced everyone online, so FIs are being judged based on the products and service levels they provide their customers. So, a small bank - or even a digital-only fintech with clever marketing - can quickly build relationships, including with dissatisfied FI customers.”

“Many big FIs recognize this and are scrambling to innovate – in some cases to catch up, or in other cases, to continue in their roles as industry leaders. Regardless, everyone knows sitting still is not an option.”

Are fintechs and FIs friends or foes? Russ says they are both.


Cindy O’Neill, President and GM, Biller Solutions

Cindy shares insights from her nearly 20 years of experience in the accounts payable/accounts receivable world.

“There are only a few FIs that are able to work in an agile environment and innovate and deliver as quickly as fintechs can, so most are at a competitive disadvantage. The FIs that have been successful automating payments are the ones strategically partnering with fintechs offering these services. I call it ‘co-opetition,’ where banks and fintechs work together to deliver a solution for buyers and suppliers that improves access, capabilities and experiences for everyone.”

Read Cindy’s full interview.  

Jerod Sands, Chief Financial Officer

Jerod shares his thoughts on the importance of data-driven insights and why FIs need to empower their customers with choice.

“On most digital banking sites, consumers are limited in terms of the options they have when paying their bills. If we've learned anything in this digital world - especially over the last 18 months - consumer choice and preference is incredibly important. Look at retail and how ecommerce is disrupting it -  especially during the pandemic. Ecommerce gives consumers choice in everything – when to buy, how to buy, where to buy, what to buy.”

Read what Jerod believes is the biggest pain point in bill pay today.


Tommy Elliott, General Manager Bill Pay

Thanks to his deep understanding of product excellence, Tommy offers up a look into what makes a great product and why modern bill pay technology is the most engaging feature FIs can offer.

“A good product solves a customer’s needs. A good product team should listen to the customer so closely that the end solution can solve problems the customers didn’t even realize they had.”

Find out what drove Tommy to leave Apple Pay for BillGO.