The Rise of Tech Giants

A Game Changer in Global Finance and Politics

by Nicola Bilotta (Volume editor) Simone Romano (Volume editor)
©2019 Edited Collection 166 Pages
Series: Global Politics and Security, Volume 4


Tech giants entering the banking and financial industry is not an issue of the future, it is already happening. This phenomenon has crucial implications that extend well beyond the banking system. There are questions like: Will tech giants be competitors of incumbents or will they rather partner up? How is the financial regulation going to handle this radical change, and will it succeed in creating a level playing field? What are the implications from a political and social point of view? Will tech giants acquire too much bargaining power in dealing with sovereign states, allowing them to shift political decisions and laws in their favour? This edited book provides a number of answers to these questions through a research effort on the economic and political implications of this technological revolution. While it is impossible to stop this revolution, it poses the challenge of steering towards a sustainable and inclusive improvement of our society and economy.

Table Of Contents

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the author(s)/editor(s)
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Table of Contents
  • Figures
  • Tables
  • Acknowledgments
  • Foreword (Franco Passacantando)
  • Introduction
  • Part One
  • Chapter 1: Comparative Advantages (Nicola Bilotta and Simone Romano)
  • 1.1 Technology: a crucial component
  • 1.2 Reputation and trust
  • 1.3 Information accumulation and big data analysis
  • Chapter 2: Business Models and Strategies (Nicola Bilotta and Simone Romano)
  • 2.1 Amazon
  • 2.2 Google, Apple and Facebook
  • 2.3 Competitors or frenemies?
  • 2.4 Partnerships: a win–win solution
  • Chapter 3: Regulatory Framework: A Barrier or a Trigger for Change? (Nicola Bilotta and Simone Romano)
  • 3.1 PSD2 between data access and enhanced competition
  • 3.2 Open Banking in the UK: a global pioneer
  • 3.3 The new regulatory framework: an opportunity for Techfin
  • Chapter 4: Case Studies: Alibaba in China and Rakuten in Japan (Nicola Bilotta and Simone Romano)
  • 4.1 Alibaba, a giant from China
  • 4.1.1 MYbank, a technological bank
  • 4.1.2 Ant Financial conglomerate
  • 4.2 Rakuten, a global technology ecosystem
  • 4.2.1 From an e-commerce store to a multi-business corporation
  • 4.2.2 Rakuten Bank’s development
  • Chapter 5: Political Implications (Nicola Bilotta and Simone Romano)
  • 5.1 Size does matter
  • 5.2 Fiscal and financial issues
  • 5.3 Digital identity
  • Part Two: Focus
  • Focus 1: The Fintech Ecosystem: An Italian Perspective (Filippo Renga, Laura Grassi and Nadir Snouno)
  • Focus 2: Established Banks and Tech Giants – Friends or Competitors? (Francesca Rosati and Teresa Spada)
  • Focus 3: The Development of Digital Strategy and Business Models in Banking Activities (Cristiana Schena and Alessandra Tanda)
  • Focus 4: Big Data Companies in Banking and Financial Services Markets: An Antitrust Issue? (Mariateresa Maggiolino)
  • Focus 5: Information Technology Innovations, Tech Giants and the Fintech Industry (Fabrizio Virtuani)
  • Focus 6: Data Sovereignty: The European Way to Foster Competition in the Digital Economy (Nicolò Romani and Giancarlo Sfolcini)
  • Conclusion (Nicola Bilotta and Simone Romano)
  • Series index

| 9 →


Figure 1: New ways of banking

Figure 2: Top 10 retail banking trends and predictions for 2018

Figure 3: Would you trust them with your money?

Figure 4: Desire for GAFA banks

Figure 5: E-commerce payments in 2016

Figure 6: Interaction model of payment services

Figure 7: Alibaba’s ecosystem

Figure 8: Increase between 2016 and 2017 by annual percentage

Figure 9: Rakuten ecosystem

Figure 10: Rakuten disaggregated revenue in 2017

Figure 11: Revenue of the Fintech segment

Figure 12: Some of the largest tech giants and banks by market capitalisation ($ billion)

Figure 13: Some of the largest tech giants and banks by profits ($ billion)

Figure 14: Effective average tax rate in EU28: the digital advantage

Figure 15: Distribution of startups by geographical area

Figure 16: Distribution of the main types and financing

Figure 17: Difference in funding according to the individual success factors

Figure 18: Strategic positioning of the financial services offered by non-financial companies

Figure 19: Perceived gaps with Fintechs and Big Techs

Figure 20: World by GDP and Gini Index ← 9 | 10 →

Figure 21: Two-sided market logical model

Figure 22: Companies by operating income/revenue

Figure 23: Model on personal identity regulation

Figure 24: The future of digital identities

| 11 →


Table 1: GAFA and financial services

Table 2: Big tech firms by core business

Table 3: Presence on apps

| 13 →


This book has come about thanks to the strategic partnership between IAI (Istituto Affari Internazionali) and Intesa Sanpaolo and with the support of Intesa Sanpaolo.

We are especially grateful to all the people and institutions who have contributed and improved this research effort. The list includes Jean-Pierre Darnis, Savino Damico, Hugo Doyle, Laura Grassi, Antonio La Mura, Alessandro Longoni, Mariateresa Maggiolino, Federico Orsi, Francesco Renga, Nicolò Romani, Francesca Rosati, Cristiana Schena, Martina Scopsi, Giancarlo Sfolcini, Alfonso Siano, Mark Smitham, Nadir Snuono, Teresa Spada, Romano Stasi, Alessandra Tanda, Stefania Vigna and Fabrizio Virtuani. And the following institutions: ABI Lab; AssoFintech; Banca d’Italia; Fintech District; the Fintech & Insurtech Observatory of the School of Management-Politecnico di Milano. Intesa Sanpaolo; and Microsoft.

In addition, our thanks go to Franco Passacantando, who has been an invaluable advisor during the entire journey of this project.

This book would have not seen light of day without the support of the staff at IAI who have been involved in this project in different capacities, in particular Alessandra Bertino and Davide Ceccanti.

Last but not least, our deepest gratitude goes to Lorenzo Kamel and the editorial staff of Peter Lang, who have believed in this project.

| 15 →

Franco Passacantando



ISBN (Softcover)
Publication date
2019 (October)
Global finance Fintech Banking industry Big data Technology Global governance
Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Warszawa, Wien, 2019. 164 pp., 23 fig. col., 1 fig. b/w, 3 tables.

Biographical notes

Nicola Bilotta (Volume editor) Simone Romano (Volume editor)

Nicola Bilotta is researcher at the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI) in the International political economy area. Previously, he worked as a research analyst at The Banker Research Team (Financial Times), with which he still collaborates. He was associate fellow at the Seven Pillar Institute of Finance & Ethics and researcher at the Istituto di Alti Studi di Geopolitica e Scienze Ausiliari. Simone Romano is advisor in the G7/G20 Sherpa Unit at the Office of the Prime Minister of Italy and associate fellow at the Istituto Affari Internazionali (IAI). He is also researcher and adjunct professor at Roma Tre University and previously visiting professor at the Freie Universität in Berlin.


Title: The Rise of Tech Giants
book preview page numper 1
book preview page numper 2
book preview page numper 3
book preview page numper 4
book preview page numper 5
book preview page numper 6
book preview page numper 7
book preview page numper 8
book preview page numper 9
book preview page numper 10
book preview page numper 11
book preview page numper 12
book preview page numper 13
book preview page numper 14
book preview page numper 15
book preview page numper 16
book preview page numper 17
book preview page numper 18
book preview page numper 19
book preview page numper 20
book preview page numper 21
book preview page numper 22
book preview page numper 23
book preview page numper 24
book preview page numper 25
book preview page numper 26
book preview page numper 27
book preview page numper 28
book preview page numper 29
book preview page numper 30
book preview page numper 31
book preview page numper 32
book preview page numper 33
book preview page numper 34
168 pages