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DN Capital’s Lemmens: “Investors are becoming more judicious about which opportunities to invest in”
Renier Lemmens, a venture partner at DN Capital, shares his views on fintechs and how these companies operate and make decisions differently from banks.

March 13, 2020 | Foo Boon Ping
  • Incumbent banks need to retrain its people and change things at a scale to keep up with challenger banks
  • Fintechs are focused on growing their user base to demonstrate that their business model works
  • For a fintech to be exciting, it needs to have products that can be taken to more than one country

DN Capital, a venture firm that primarily invests in Europe and North America, continues to expand its investment portfolio. It is currently invested in some emerging markets in South America and is looking at opportunities in Indonesia.

With his vast career experience as a venture partner, chairman and professor of fintech and innovation, Renier Lemmens elaborates how DN Capital evaluates investments. He also talks about the evolution in the fintech space, regulators in Europe and financial inclusion.


Foo Boon Ping (FBP): I’m very pleased to be speaking with Renier Lemmens. He’s a venture partner at DN Capital, a Europe-based venture capital (VC) that looks at fintech investments mainly in Europe.

You have come from a very rich experience, both from traditional commercial banking and consulting. You see a lot of financial institutions, business, and in the last few years, fintechs have been such a phenomenal development. But we know that fintechs are not new. How do you see fintechs? You invest in them, so there is a very financial-oriented perspective when you look at fintech. You are bound to see beyond the hype.

Renier Lemmens (RL): We look at the fundamentals of the company. Is a company addressing a market that is large? Are they able to achieve accelerated growth? Is the ratio between the cost of customer acquisition and customer lifetime value sustainable? Is the management team ready for the next wave of growth? In the evaluation of investments, we rarely look at how big is this going to be and who is g...

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