About the workshop

Blockchain has inevitably been on the radar on many financial institutions, due to the advantages of the technology that we have witnessed and the decentralised, trust-less, and non-intermediation values that it brings. Many banks and emerging financial players are looking at blockchain in many areas such as payments, lending, contracts, and so on.

The Asian Banker is organising a one-day comprehensive workshop dedicated to blockchain and cryptocurrencies for financial services. The workshop will provide an in-depth primer to everything you need to know about the technology and how it will make an impact on banking and financial services. Companies who are keen to learn on how they can incorporate crypto-wallets into their payments system can also benefit from the workshop. Participants will also get the opportunity to engage in highly interactive sessions where they exchange insights that could be translated into practical actions.

Registration to the workshop includes access to the Digital Finance Convention and Heads of Retail Dialogue on 22nd March 2018.

The workshop will cover key areas such as

  • The blockchain revolution – How it will transform your job, business, and industry
  • Blockchain in finance
  • Advantages to customer experience and data analytics
  • Blockchain and cybersecurity
  • Going deeper into bitcoin and cryptocurrencies
  • How to build a crypto-wallet for my business?
  • Initial coin offerings (ICOs) and smart contracts
  • Regulatory compliance
  • The future of money
  • Evolution of crypto-banks
  • Future of financial services

Who is it designed for:

The workshop is designed for professionals from the financial industry, including banks, insurance, financial technology (fintech) companies, start-ups and retail companies who are keen to learn and integrate blockchain and cryptocurrencies into their business models.


Karthik Iyer
CEO, Founder & Chairman, BlockchainMonk

Karthik Iyer is a globally recognized expert and advisor in blockchain and fintech. He is the India ambassador of the world’s largest think tank on decentralized technologies, the P2P Foundation (the only place Satoshi Nakamoto has his webpage). Karthik has been involved with cryptocurrencies as early as 2009 and did his first trade in 2011. He is the Founder of India’s first end-to-end Blockchain and Cryptocurrency research firm, Blockchain Monk.

He spent over a decade in Scandinavia and has mentored dozens of blockchain companies such as Ammbr, Dubtokens, Greeneum and Peerity and helped them build great products and raise capital. Karthik has worked for leading technology firms such as Red Hat, Novell, Sun Microsystems and advised CXO's of global banks in technology strategy.

He is the only non-European involved in the largest EU research project on peer-to-peer value and assisted the European Council in understanding the disruptive potential of blockchain and smart contracts. He also advised the heads of the largest banks and insurance firms in Europe on the potential of decentralized finance and blockchain technologies at LIMRA and subsequently helped various Scandinavian and American companies expand into Asia.

His views have been widely published, including being interviewed in the ‘Future of Money’ TV series on Bitcoin and Blockchain. He was the first Indian Columnist at the largest selling business newspaper in Norway and his Research paper on China is the most downloaded paper in the history of a leading journal.

Karthik has attained his education in India and Sweden and later acquired his MBA from Fudan University, China and pursued his PHD from the University of Oslo, Norway.


Blockchain for Finance - Day 1
21st March 2018, Westin, KL




Welcome, introduction & warm-up


The blockchain revolution – How it will transform your job, business, and industry

  • Understanding the decentralised ledger and how it looks like
  • Use cases of blockchain in finance
  • The good and bad side of adoption
  • How can blockchain improve customer experience


Coffee break


Blockchain in finance

  • How is blockchain disrupting traditional financial services
  • What are the potentials for financial institutions to incorporate cryptocurrencies in their business models?
  • Challenges in adoption including end-to-end implementation
Smart contract applications in finance


Blockchain and cybersecurity

    • Evaluating the risks involved
    • How can we protect our data and system?
    • Trust-less system – Can we rely completely on blockchain?
    • What are regulators most worried about
    • What are the attempts to legislate it and prevent money laundering?


Lunch break


Going deeper into bitcoin and cryptocurrencies

  • Understanding how money looks like today and in the future
  • What is bitcoin mining? Why is its code unbreakable?
  • The ICO phenomenon and what we need to know
  • How can financial institutions collaborate in order to not be disrupted?


How to build a crypto-wallet for my business?

  • Factors to consider
  • How can we encourage user adoption?
  • What happens when users pay through crypto-wallets?
  • Managing regulatory compliance and risk


Tea break


Forging towards the future of financial services

  • The future of money
  • How likely will crypto-banks evolve?
  • What does the networked future look like?
  • The players who will define the future industry


Summary and conclusion

* Please note that Sessions, speakers and panellist may change according to availability
For questions related to the programme, please contact
Hafezah Saleh,
Programme Manager
Tel: +65 6236 6506
Email: hsaleh@theasianbanker.com


The sessions will take on a highly experiential sessions and dialogues with leading industry experts, financial service providers and technology innovators to maximise interaction opportunities.

Digital Finance - Day 2
Thursday, 22 March 2018


Registration & morning networking


Welcome Address

Opening Address:
Evaluating top trends and priorities for the retail financial sector in the region
Jessica Chew, Deputy Governor, Bank Negara Malaysia

International keynote:
Architecting the digital journey
Chris Skinner, leading commentator and strategist on digital finance, chairman of the Financial Services Club and author of the bestselling books Digital Bank, ValueWeb and Digital Human. Chris will be discussing what it takes to embrace digital transformations for the financial services sector.

Forging ahead to the future of retail finance
A new era in retail is emerging, with disruptive innovations in payments and lending and technologies such as blockchain, chatbots, robo-advisors and big data applications sweeping through the industry.

  • Setting the stage for digital readiness - do innovation centres meet the objective?
  • Unbunding and rebundling of financial services – building new ecosystems of open banking

Jessica Chew, Deputy Governor, Bank Negara Malaysia
Chris Skinner, Chairman, Financial Services Club

Chaired by Emmanuel Daniel, Chairman, The Asian Banker


Coffee break


The Heads of Retail Dialogue
This heads of retail annual meeting is an intense two hour session that involves the opinions and insights of CEOs and heads of retail financial institutions from more than 30 countries from the Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa. The topics that have been identified for this roundtable will cover a comprehensive range of key issues on leading best practices in the industry:

  • Mapping the Digital Journey
  • Frictionless in Retail – at what cost
  • Where is Artificial Intelligence taking us
  • How should banks think about APIs
  • What’s next for Mobile?
  • Digital payments and crypto currencies
  • Collaboration between banks, fintech, and technology companies

Session chaired by Philippe Paillart, Chairman, Excellence in Retail Banking Advisory Council and Emmanuel Daniel, Chairman, The Asian Banker

Key findings from the Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards
Programme 2018

  • Awards programme: Process, methodology and scorecards
  • Latest updates on key developments in retail financial services
  • Key findings from the awards programme
  • Designing the bank of the future

Presentation by Richard Hartung, Member, Excellence Advisory Council




The upscale revolution in digital  payments
Cashless payments is increasingly becoming a norm. In fact, many are leapfrogging towards QR payments and e-wallets.

  • The advent of e-wallets in Asia – Can financial institutions replicate China’s success?
  • QR code payment -How to overcome challenges in implementation, customer and merchant adoption?
  • What can the retail payments community learn from gamification as a customer engagement tool?

With a presentation from
David Brearley
, Head of Consulting, Silverlake Group
Christopher Tiffin
, Regional Head, Digital Financial Services, Axiata

Chaired by Varun Sabhlok, vice-chairman, Excellence Advisory Council


Customer experience in the digital economy - Branding innovation and staying relevant
Jacqueline Thng, Partner, Prophet will share on how to create the right marketing model to win customers and what the rest of the world can learn from China’s experience. She will guide us through design thinking strategies and use cases that will change the way you think about your customers and products


The emergence of the platform economy -The changing behaviour of customers and how to maintain the trust relationship
The success of Amazon stems from their ability to provide customers the opportunity to choose from a myriad of options, suited to their specific needs and tastes. How can retail financial institutions maintain the trust their customers in them and replicate the model?

Vipin Kalra, CEO, BankBazaar


Insurtech - Leveraging on data analytics to provide personalized services
The insurance sector is poised for a real dramatic shift this year as the sector is set to take advantage of the same technologies and new concepts that has transformed finance. What shifts can we expect in value propositions, pricing, and business models?

Syed Ahmad, Founder & MD, Katsana


Tea break


How will blockchain revolutionise the world of retail?
Karthik Iyer, Founder, Blockchain Monk, will share his perspective on how financial institutions and retail players can leverage on the distributed ledger technology to achieve automated and ‘trustless’ experience for their users.

  • Scalability for the retail industry
  • From proof of concept to implementation
  • The advent of crypto-wallets


Unlocking access to financial services through fintech
The range of choices available to get a loan or transfer money, or pay the bills has expanded tremendously with the wave of new players in the market. This session looks at how experts in the industry managed to revolutionise financial services and contribute to a more financially inclusive society.

  • Managing regulatory barriers and financial crime
  • Successful collaboration models between financial institutions
  • The future of credit

With presentation from

  • Jackal Ma, Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer, Tongdun Technology
  • Chin Wei Min, Executive Director, Securities Commission Malaysia
  • Kah Meng Wong, CEO, Funding Societies
Chaired by Richard Hartung, Member, Excellence Advisory Council


Closing remarks

* Please note that Sessions, speakers and panellist may change according to availability
For questions related to the programme, please contact
Hafezah Saleh,
Programme Manager
Tel: +65 6236 6506
Email: hsaleh@theasianbanker.com