When Brad Katsuyama came to the US in 2002 to run the trading desk for the Royal Bank of Canada, he thought he understood the game. If he wanted to purchase a block of shares for a client, he could find an amount at a certain price and buy it. But around 2007 something began to change. Increasingly he could no longer get what he saw offered on his screen. A purchase order would get him only a fraction of the shares he wanted, and when he went to buy the rest, the price had suddenly gone up.
As I researched some of the more dynamic and inspirational FinTech CEOs for this piece, I noticed that certain personality traits emerged. These leaders are all interested in financial problems and want to fix them, whether it's by changing existing technology or completely bypassing it. They have a passion for helping people and recognize that by doing so there is benefit for more than just those persons they are directly assisting.
Imagine that you’re walking down a crowded city street, and a piano falls from the sky. As dozens of people turn to watch, the piano crashes down right in the middle of the street.
Then, without a second to lose, every person who witnessed the event is strapped to a lie detector and recounts exactly what they saw. They all tell precisely the same story, down to the letter.
Is there any doubt that the piano fell from the sky?