This episode updates one of the very first ones we did in our Barefoot Innovation series, last year. Episode Two featured the two co-founders of Simple, Josh Reich and Shamir Karkal. A year later, we all found ourselves back at the same conference where we'd recorded that program. Shamir has now taken on a new role, leading the open platform innovation of the very innovative bank that bought Simple, BBVA. Josh, though, is still CEO of Simple (a fact that he says tends to surprise people). So on a very rainy afternoon in Southern California, he and I found a place where we could duck out of the weather (you may hear the deluge in the background), and talked about how Simple has progressed in the year just past.
So...very few people are more fun to talk with than Josh Reich, but I think my favorite thing about this episode might not be the podcast, fascinating as it is, but rather something the podcast led me to. In our conversation, Josh talks about a customer whose dog chewed her debit card - twice! Simple sent her a customer appreciation package with the second card, and she was so grateful that she made a YouTube video about getting it.
Every banker in the world should watch this: customer appreciation reaction video
I won't update the full show notes here - please look at Episode 2 for the basics on Simple which, again, is now part of BBVA bank. And if you missed it, be sure to listen also to my podcast with Manolo Sanchez, the CEO of BBVA Compass, who I think may be the most innovative bank president anywhere. BBVA is all-in on fintech innovation.
Also, Josh and I did not get to a key update, which is the big move Simple made last year to eliminate ALL its checking account fees. I'm linking to his blog post here explaining what they did and why. Remember, Barefoot Innovation is a search for better solutions for financial consumers through all kinds of innovation. BBVA and Simple are making this search in a great many interesting ways.
So enjoy hearing Josh's insights, ranging from how to succeed when a big banks buys a small innovator, to the make-or-break power of a bank's culture, to the incredible efficiencies of growing a bank without branches - he shares some numbers -- to his advice for regulators.
And watch for fantastic episodes coming up: Oportun CEO Raul Vazquez; Betterment CEO Jon Stein; two of the country's top compliance officers, together; and Blythe Masters of Digital Asset Holdings - to name a few.
Regulation Innovation Video Series: Briefing One - The Five Tech Trends Driving Financial Transformation
Meanwhile be sure to sign up for our new video series, Regulation Innovation - Thriving on Disruption.
These are short briefings - 10 to 15 minutes each - designed to be the single easiest way to understand the huge issues raised by fintech, in both technology and regulation, and how best to address them.
Since fintech is far more about "tech" than "fin," we're starting the series with The Five Tech trends transforming finance.
Plus we have a lighthearted little extra, straight from my own kitchen, on how I was inspired to some thoughts about innovation by a very unusual gadget.
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