Why Poland became a key part of Europe’s fintech scene – and what comes next

Disruptive tech | 08 May 2018

Poland is at the forefront of technological advancement in Europe in the implementation of modern payment and banking solutions, such as contactless payments, bank-branded pay-by-link payments, or sector-wide solutions such as the BLIK mobile payment service. The popularity of mobile and e-banking (with almost seven and 14 million active users, respectively) and contactless payments (currently used in over half of all non-cash payments) is driven by technological diffusion and customers’ openness to innovation, as well as high dynamics of development of Polish transactional banking systems. Implementations that stand out, in both European and global contexts, include instant (express) transfer systems, ‘pure online’ remote channels of financial product sales, personal finance management (PFM), and remote customer service systems such as video advisory services. [Continue Reading]

The half way point to Brexit: 12 months down, 12 months to go

Brexit | 08 May 2018

29 March marked the one year anniversary since Article 50 was triggered. The last 12 months have seen a number of key developments. Following the end of the first stage of negotiations in Brussels, there is now an agreement in place for the rights of EU nationals and their family members living in the UK. Last week saw the announcement that the UK and EU have finally agreed a deal on the transition period. [Continue Reading]

A client’s perspective on rate reviews

Legal Procurement | 08 May 2018

We just made it through that time of year the majority of law firms update their standard rate cards. They will send these out some time during the first quarter to let those clients who accept such things, often with a standard ‘discount’, know what their new rates became (past tense) effective 1 January. [Continue Reading]

Ireland: recent developments in merger control and antitrust enforcement

Competition | 08 May 2018

Ireland is one of the best countries in the world for ease of doing business, according to Forbes. The Irish regulatory environment is business focused and pragmatic. Companies deal with smaller regulatory teams, giving them and their advisers greater access to senior personnel. Competition is no exception. Matheson is the law firm of choice for internationally-focused companies and financial institutions doing business in and from Ireland. We are currently advising a number of UK companies, including those in the banking, insurance, media, pharma, tech and telecoms industries, that are looking to make a move to Ireland or expand their operations here. [Continue Reading]

Thou shalt not foreclose the Swiss market

Competition | 08 May 2018

Although being a landlocked country in the heart of Europe, Switzerland has kept a certain insularity: while Swiss companies have access to the European markets (and vice versa) based on bilateral agreements with the European Union, it is a member neither of the EU nor the EEA. Further, Switzerland is often characterised as a ‘high price island’ within Europe. The latter has caused heated debates in domestic politics relating to price differences between Switzerland and neighbouring European countries for comparable products and services, and to the reasons for these differences. Several amendments to the Swiss Constitution and|or Cartel Act have been proposed in the past years to ‘flood’ this island and do away with these price differences.

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