The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) announced today it was scaling up its partnership with the Lithuanian fintech hub Rockit, underscoring the Bank’s support for the development of this industry in the Baltic states.
The EBRD has previously worked with Rockit with the help of the TaiwanBusiness-EBRD Technical Cooperation Fund.
Speaking at the Fintech Week Lithuania conference via videolink today, Jacek Kubas, EBRD Associate Director, Local Currency and Capital Markets, said: “Deepening our relationship is an important contribution to creating the conditions in which this industry can thrive. The coronavirus pandemic has brutally exposed vulnerabilities in the way we are running our economies and this is a wake-up call to strengthen resilience. Fintech is clearly part of the evolving new landscape.”
After the lifting of public health measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, the fintech hub in the centre of Vilnius will open new premises and offer further initiatives for the vibrant start-up community in the Baltic states. In its second year of operation, Rockit plans to focus even more on financial technology, entrepreneurship and sustainability.
“Over the past year, Rockit has established itself as a leading financial technology centre in Lithuania and it occupies an important place in the country’s fintech ecosystem. As the fintech and start-up communities expand, so do we. With this development, we are setting high and ambitious goals and planning an even wider range of activities, so that we can offer more opportunities and value to our community. We will also strive to bring more attention to the topic of sustainability in Lithuania which must be an integral part of modern business,” said Šarūnė Smalakytė, Head of Rockit.
The coronavirus crisis made it necessary to organise the Fintech Week Lithuania as a series of video conferences this year. Nevertheless, the four-day event attracted over 500 companies from more than 70 countries. Participants discussed areas such as global payments, blockchain, lending, finance and banking technology.
The EBRD has been supporting the development of innovative new banking approaches in its regions for many years. The Bank acts as an investor and works with governments and authorities to create a supportive regulatory framework, building regulatory sandboxes and designing roadmaps for the creation of a fintech ecosystem in the economies where it operates. Fostering the EBRD regions’ huge potential for fintech is an increasingly important part of the Bank’s work – as an investor, as a policy adviser and as a partner in cooperation.