What’s Happening at AFP 2023? Discussion on Treasury Trends, Fintech Insights, and More
Join us for the latest episode of the Treasury Update Podcast as we gear up for AFP 2023 in San Diego! Hear from our team as Jonathan, Craig, Ky, and Brian share what’s in store for this year’s event. We discuss key takeaways to look for in AFP, including the importance of building relationships and learning from industry experts, as well as specific details on the events, games, reports, and banker’s lunch that we’ll be hosting in California.
Get ready to connect, learn, and engage at AFP 2023. We hope to see you in San Diego!
Jonathan Jeffery, Strategic Treasurer
Craig Jeffery, Strategic Treasurer
Ky Casanova, Strategic Treasurer
Brian Cochrum, Strategic Treasurer
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Episode Transcription - Episode # 274: What’s Happening at AFP 2023? Discussion on Treasury Trends, Fintech Insights, and More
Welcome to the Treasury Update Podcast presented by Strategic Treasurer, your source for interesting treasury news, analysis, and insights in your car, at the gym or wherever you decide to tune in.
Jonathan Jeffery 00:17
Welcome back to the Treasury Update Podcast. AFP 2023 is just a few weeks away, and we’re getting pretty excited to head down to San Diego. San Diego is the first AFP that I attended, so it’s nice to be back full circle. Today, we wanted to take a little bit of time to share what Strategic Treasurer is doing out in San Diego. So joining us today we’ve got three Strategic Treasurer employees, not including me, of course. I’m Jonathan, media production specialist here at Strategic Treasurer. And joining me today is starting off with Craig. Welcome to the show, Craig.
Craig Jeffery 00:49
Jonathan Jeffery 00:50
So are you excited for AFP?
I am, there’s always a little bit of trepidation about how much work goes into preparing for it. But it is so good to see so many people to connect and reconnect, reconnect with old friends and to connect with new people. So yeah, I am I am excited.
Jonathan Jeffery 01:06
I think at the end of AFP every year, everyone’s like, we’re not doing that again. And then one month later, we start planning for it.
So I’m an extrovert and that’s this gives me a lot of energy to be at those things. So I’m like, let’s do another one. Can’t we do it next week.
Jonathan Jeffery 01:24
Yeah, pans out pretty good. Okay. So first of all, everyone’s wondering, did you get the San Diego hotel to let us fly our AFP Strategic Treasurer flag?
Now, probably there’s like five people who remember that back in Chicago, we rented out a special luxury hotel, it was a mansion. Maybe it wasn’t a luxury hotel, it was a mansion. And they allowed us to put a flag up and people commented on the flag. So no, we haven’t even asked if we could fly a Strategic Treasurer flag on the hotel. I don’t know if we can find that flag. But we hadn’t thought about that. Maybe we should put that on on Ky’s list.
Jonathan Jeffery 02:04
Or at least hang it in one of the windows when people driving by they know where we are.
Do you have a flag? You don’t have a flag?
Jonathan Jeffery 02:12
All right. So on a more serious note, what what key takeaways are we getting from AFP every year? And why do we go as a company?
Yeah, so a couple couple of key reasons from a relationship perspective. existing relationships. It’s a it’s a form where you can meet a lot of our existing relationships all at once versus flying all over the country to meet that many people would take us weeks to do that. So it’s existing relationships, establishing new relationships. It’s it is the key place to be for treasury in in North America. Second, you know, on the learning front, we meet and see new companies, we hear new ideas that that comes from conversations from sessions that we attend educational sessions, as well as from places like our breakfast Hot Seat. We have two hot seats, where there’s panel discussions on this year on a couple other topics, but it’s to learn too.
Jonathan Jeffery 03:07
Gotcha. Every single year, there’s a theme, I think it was about two years ago, everyone was just saying Faster Payments, Faster Payments, Faster Payments, you don’t want slower payments. What do you think the theme will be this year? My My guess is there’s going to be a lot of talk about AI. And there’s going to be a lot of talk about liquidity issues or challenges.
The practical side of technology will certainly be in play. You know, ai ai certainly will have quite a bit of airtime. It’s been a buzz for quite some time. API’s might do more than that, or AI. So one of the one of those is probably the key theme. I wish there was more talk about counterparty risk management, and perhaps the economy, but I think it’s going to be on the tech side.
Jonathan Jeffery 03:55
Okay, so you’re gonna have to put in initiative to talk about counterparty risk management.
Yeah, yeah. That and yeah, there’s, there’s, there’s a number of other topics that are pretty good ones to discuss. But that that’s my feedback. I think your guest is a good one.
Jonathan Jeffery 04:11
Gotcha. Okay. Yeah, we’ll see how it goes. And we’ll see what the buzz is about this year. So you had mentioned our FinTech hot seats are breakfast sessions that go on and I believe they start at 7am. Right?
I think so. I think breakfast starts at seven. I’m not sure if the recording and the panel starts at 7:15 or 7:30. That should be on our website, and whatever I say will be wrong. So but it’s somewhere around there. So foods available at seven. And the talk gets started pretty soon after. So Monday we talk technology, and Tuesday we talk payments, so.
Jonathan Jeffery 04:44
Yep, so if you’re looking for good food, you don’t want to hear about payments in tech, you can still come get the good food, but you’re going to hear about it. What are we talking about in these hot seats?
Tech there’s a number of developments like you already mentioned some with with APIs. AI, you know, some of the faster development cycles that occur with some of the newer technology that’s allowing fintechs to develop their applications five to eight times faster than the previous version, interoperability, you know, whether you call it open banking, embedded banking, embedded treasury, those are some of the things that are gonna be discussed. Same thing to on the information side, how are we leveraging information as companies, as banks, across the board and the payment side, certainly discussion about how payments can move more quickly. And there certainly are use cases for that. But also, you know, information payments as part of a workflow, payments and payments, security. You know, all those things are increasingly important with the level of fraud, and the expectations that are going on. And combine that with all of the companies that are changing their underlying ERPs to go from older legacy platforms, like say, from SAP to SAPS4HANA, Oracle, the Oracle Cloud, people are moving to new platforms, that’s creating this whole ripple effect of how we connect internally. So there’s a, there’s a number of areas on tech and payments that we’ll be covering.
Jonathan Jeffery 06:11
Very cool. So this is I think, our fourth year of doing the payments and technology hot seats, right.
I think it’s four that we’ve done a panel in a breakout room, we’ve we’ve started back in Orlando, doing the FinTech hot seats, I think we did 19 sessions from the floor of the AFP, projecting noise and volume onto the floor. At first people didn’t like it. And then they’re like, Wow, a lot of people listen. But doing 19 was too many. So we bring more people together on a panel, and it’s a lively discussion.
Jonathan Jeffery 06:42
Yeah, there was a lot going on all day when we had just one on ones. Over the four years of these panel discussions, what kind of trends have we seen?
During the last four years, the the most recent time period on payments, you know, the newer immediate payments, there’s, there’s certainly value of speed, depending on that particular use cases, we’ve seen that those are being adopted, I would say not maybe on the fringe, but on specific use cases, the idea that we can supply better information, that’s that moves from just being additive to transformative on the overall processes for payment. So I can share more information that helps you on the other side, it creates less defects, the process is better, because you know what I’m paying you. You can apply it, you can forecast it, you know, better information, faster information, more complete information helps both parties significantly. That’s certainly a key trend. The other trend is payment hubs payment hub functionality. This is you know, we are at the beginning part of the decade of payment growth, fraud is having a big impact on that new payment methods, changing systems. And about four other factors are really driving this movement to more robust payment channels. So and we see that taking at least a decade, to move through the range of companies from commercial size companies to large enterprise global companies. That’s a key thing on payments on the tech side, some of the trends, you know, the rapid growth of API use now the the rapid growth has been a low percentage of banks who are offering it, but it’s growing steadily and significantly so far. And we expect that to continue over the next few years for sure. And being adopted as tech providers and banks can I already mentioned embedded embedded Treasury this interoperability is a real recent motto, far more cooperation, ecosystem discussion between banks and fintechs, then disintermediation and disruption, conversation, so much more collaboration there. And I already mentioned the development speed continues to accelerate, you know, development times, you know, tend to be five to eight times faster with some of the newer tech than the older tech. And so there’s, there’s a huge amount of promise here changes dramatic. Those on the tech side, some people are wondering where we are on the exhibit hall, our booth is 2233. So 2233, or double to double three, whatever you’d like to be it’s we’re on the main aisle and as you come in from the main entrance, you get to the main aisle turn right, and we’ll be on the left hand side down towards that end.
Jonathan Jeffery 09:23
How will people recognize our booth?
Well, we don’t have a flag, but we have a giant spinning I don’t know what to call it some kind of oval sign that’s that’s up top. Hopefully it’d be spinning last year, they said they couldn’t spin it because of some other malfunction, but it’s a round sign that says Strategic Treasurer. That’ll be the place where fun happens. Ky is going to share probably share some stuff that she’s got planned this year. And it is she’s very creative, and it’s pretty amazing what what we’ll have there so come and see it if not to visit and catch up. Come and see some of the fun stuff we’ve got there. That’ll be that’ll be worth the trip. I guarantee it.
Jonathan Jeffery 09:59
I’ll bet it will. Alright, Craig. Well, thanks. We’ll circle back to you at the end. But thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Craig Jeffery 10:04
Always happy to talk.
Jonathan Jeffery 10:06
Today is it a very exciting day for the Treasury update podcast? Because this is, against her will, Kylene Casanova’s debut on the Treasury Update Podcast. Welcome, Ky.
Ky Casanova 10:19
I’d say thanks for having me, Jon, because that’s the polite thing to say. But I did not agree to do this. I tried to avoid the podcast as much as possible. But I’m happy to be here talking about AFP today.
Jonathan Jeffery 10:29
Oh, you’re gonna love it by the end of this episode.
Ky Casanova 10:31
Jonathan Jeffery 10:32
Craig was talking about your creativity in the booth. And the you kind of spearhead all of the design of the booth and the things going on at AFP.
Ky Casanova 10:43
I tried to come up with the craziest idea that I can get Craig to approve. So there’s sometimes he tells me No, but this year, I got a lottery machine approved. So think of a of a ping pong ball machine blowing air and, and a bunch of ping pong with our logo on it.
Jonathan Jeffery 11:01
Yeah, and strategic treasures known for their surveys. And you work that into this game, I want to share a little bit about how that works.
Ky Casanova 11:09
Yeah, so we’ll be doing prizes and a survey. So you’ll come to the ping pong ball lotto machine, pick a ball, maybe possibly win a prize, we’ll have different things from a Yeti cooler, Casely PowerPod, Starbucks gift cards, all kinds of fun stuff. And then so you’re left holding this ping pong ball, what do you do with it? We’ve got a one question survey that we’re going to ask, What’s your greatest pain point and treasury, you’ll drop your ping pong ball in the category. That’s your greatest pain in Treasury. Follow us on social media throughout the we’ll be posting the results of that throughout the conference. And then if you’re not at AFP, we’ll be doing a one question survey. Same question, what’s your greatest pain point in treasury online. So if you’re not at the conference, you can still participate. Sorry, no prizes for participating online. But we’ll aggregate those results and have a webinar on December 7, talking about the greatest pain points in treasury and how we can help alleviate some of that.
Jonathan Jeffery 12:06
I wonder if there’ll be a difference between the people who travel and the people who don’t? The pain points. It’ll be interesting, for sure. Another thing that’s really cool at AFP is we have all of our analyst reports. All of our mini eBooks are different reports. What kinds of things can people come and pick up this year?
Ky Casanova 12:23
So every year at AFP, we release our analysts report in print and digital as well. So you can have it one of two ways. This year, the 2023 Technology Report will be released. We’ve got 17 vendors included in that you can stop by the booth, you can pick it up in print, or a card to download QR code to download it instantly.
Jonathan Jeffery 12:41
Very cool. Anything else you want to say to the audience is going to come see us there?
Ky Casanova 12:46
Monday night, we’re having a cocktail party across the street from the convention center at the Hilton Hotel. We’re co-sponsoring that with Deluxe and GPS. We’re excited to be at the poolside lounge. It’ll be a beautiful evening outdoors in San Diego. So stop by for a few minutes for hors d’oeuvres, drinks. We’d love to see you.
Jonathan Jeffery 13:04
It’s poolside. Is attire swimsuits or suits?
Ky Casanova 13:07
Definitely a suit for you and not a swimsuit.
Jonathan Jeffery 13:10
OK, sounds good. Well, thanks for thanks for sharing all this info, Ky.
Ky Casanova 13:15
Thanks for having me, Jon.
Jonathan Jeffery 13:17
Now we’re here with Brian Cochrum, our Director of Marketing here at Strategic Treasurer. You’ve done a lot of work getting people on for the two events that we have going on during the middle of the day at AFP, what kind of events do we have? What can people look forward to?
Brian Cochrum 13:30
That’s a good question. So we’ve got a number of events, some are corporate facing, and others are what we think of as provider facing. So banks and fintechs, predominantly, most of what the AFP is about is reaching out to corporate practitioners who are all going to be gathered into one spot, you know, trying to court them finding their needs, and solving them with whatever solutions one might have. But few actually tried to support all the providers who are also there. And since strategic treasure serves both groups, we do have a couple of events that are specifically targeted to our providers in our space. And so on Sunday morning at 1030. Until 1130 or so, we’re going to have our now second annual provider forum. So last year, we kicked that off by inviting those who were in town early enough to come and we shared some of our thoughts on what’s going on in the space, some of the data that we’ve put together and gave them an opportunity to have some food and some networking with their peers. And so we’re going to do that again. We recently presented a series of webinars to our provider audience on sort of our philosophy of data. Its usefulness obviously, its need actually. And then we followed that up with a number of interviews of those who came to try and figure out boots on the ground, despite whatever the ideal utilization of data might be in producing and going to market with varying solutions that people have what’s clean on paper is not always what’s actual in practice. And so what are some of the major hiccups or issues that have affected, you know, companies who are trying to understand their market, understand their clients and provide the best solution or service to them. And so what we’re planning to do this year, on Sunday, at 1030, in our side room there, it’s in the mezzanine level room 14 A is we’re going to have some brunch, let people come around, meet some of their peers in the industry. And then Craig and I are going to try and share some of the information we’ve gathered from others, as well as some of our thoughts on what what the right next steps might be, we’ve been working to try and put together some solutions to solve some of these data challenges that people have. So that’ll be on Sunday morning before everything kicks off, before the corporate show up and everybody cast, you know, has to be on point. So it should be a good time for, for anyone who’s there early. And then on Tuesday, at lunch we have now for many years, we’ve been doing a regional bank forum or regional bank luncheon. Again, same reason, everybody’s there to serve the corporate practitioners, which we’re glad to we do to very few pay much attention to the bankers, especially regional bankers, we’re partnering this year with Q2, they serve the same group. They provide data transformation as a FinTech to different financial institutions. And so we’re going to present some information from our perspective, and there’s over a really good meal to way better than what’s going to be down on the exhibit hall floor. And so we’ll be reaching out to regional bankers who are registered to invite them and seating is limited. So first come first serve. If you get an invite from us, answer it.
Jonathan Jeffery 16:40
Yeah, show up.
Brian Cochrum 16:41
Jonathan Jeffery 16:41
This is our third year doing both these events, right?
Brian Cochrum 16:45
Third year on the luncheon, I think third or fourth, and then second on the provider forum.
Jonathan Jeffery 16:48
Okay. Yeah. And they’ll past couple years, these have been pretty popular events. Yeah,
Yeah, everyone’s enjoyed it. We got a room that fits a little bit more, now. We’ve had even more limited space in the past, but we should have 45 or 50 seats this year. So should be a good crowd and some good conversation.
Jonathan Jeffery 17:07
Cool. Anything else you want to say to the audience?
Look forward to seeing everybody stop by our booth 2233 on the floor, or any of our events that I’m sure are being mentioned in this segment, and we look forward to connecting.
Jonathan Jeffery 17:20
Cool. Well, thank you.
Brian Cochrum 17:21
Jonathan Jeffery 17:22
Now we’re gonna jump back to Craig. Craig, do you have any final thoughts and things you want to say to people that are coming to see us at AFP?
Craig Jeffery 17:28
Well, for those that are coming to see us at AFP, look forward to connecting with you. You know, for those who may be wondering whether to connect or not, I mean, AFP is a great time to learn and engage. Hope to reconnect or hope to connect with you if this is the first time we’ve met. But I hope we can do that at one of our events on the floor at our booth 2233. Or maybe we can grab some time in San Diego. See you soon.
Jonathan Jeffery 17:52
See you guys in San Diego.
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