Mary Alcantara is the Deputy Managing Director of MKB Fintechlab, Hungary’s first fintech innovation lab and design competence center owned by MKB Bank. At Fintechlab, Mary leads the innovation team, brokers bank partnerships with startups and scaleups, and coordinates events and educational programming. She is passionate about open innovation, building ecosystems, and helping banks create superior experiences for their customers.
Mary has been a key player in the Hungarian startup ecosystem for the last 7 years. She is a founding partner of tandemLEAP, a business management company with offices in Budapest and New York City. She has consulted and mentored many of Budapest’s leading incubation and accelerator programs, including the Hungarian government’s INPUT Program, and is a founding member of the Hungarian Business Angel Network. Mary received a Bachelor’s Degree from Harvard University and an MBA from Central European University.
In this episode, we speak about startup environment in the fintech industry. Mary shares her vast experiences of working with young companies, what she think is the new normal and where is the industry heading.
Here is a rundown of the episode, if you want to jump ahead:
- 1:07 What is MKB and the MKB Fintech lab?
- 6:19 Does lockdown create opportunities for startups?
- 10:55 How do you choose projects to support?
- 15:50 Mary’s startups background before Fintech lab
- 20:00 remaining human during breakdown and new normal
- 24:07 Difference between US and Europe and startups sustainability
- 36:12 Where is the industry heading now
- 38:40 What billboard would you put up at your hometown?
Useful links from episode:
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Inside the Vacuum podcast explores the lives and journeys of founders and technology leaders as they work to overcome challenges while building products in an ever-changing world. Hosted by Marcel Klimo of Vacuumlabs.