Financial Services (105)
Somewhere in the German winegrowing region Rheingau, deep down under the Ress’s vineyard estate, there is a bank - the wineBANK. It offers a perfectly well-tempered and secure wine storage space for rent to keep the value of your beloved red and white wines growing. A special degustation room complements the service.
Why it matters
As a reaction to the implosion of the art-market bubble and the ongoing gold-rush, smart investment alternatives like vintage wines are gaining popularity. Will we see ‘high-street banks’ hopping on the train and cooperating with specialists in these alternative areas such as winemakers to expand their offer?
One of the biggest challenges that poor urban entrepreneurs face is lack of access to capital. Banks and financial institutions are hesitant to lend to these individuals due to credit risk and small money lenders charge almost usurious interest rates. State Bank of India has developed a unique model where small sums (sometimes as low as $100) are loaned to individuals who form ‘Self Help Groups’ that together add up to a significant corpus. The bank benefits because the default risk is spread across multiple individuals in same social circle. Additionally peer pressure helps to prevent defaults.
Bankia and MTV have organised a design and branding contest to find the new image of a credit card for teenagers. Creativity and the ability to capture the philosophy of the two brands will be the most valued factors when choosing the two winning designs, which will receive a prize valued at more than 10,000 euros (www.mtv.es/concursobankia)