From 11 to 13 April 2016, HRH the Hereditary Grand Duke headed a mission led by the Minister of Finance to San Francisco, San José, Sunnyvale and Palo Alto, in California. The aim of the Luxembourgish delegation was to gather information on the latest technological trends and developments, and to promote the Grand Duchy as the go-to hub in Europe in the Fintech field.
On 11 April 2016, HRH the Hereditary Grand Duke and Minister of Finance Pierre Gramegna visited the Plug and Play Tech Center in Sunnyvale. Founded in 2006, this is one of the main incubators / accelerators in Silicon Valley. That makes the Plug and Play Tech Center a source of inspiration for the LHoFT (Luxembourg House of Financial Technology). The Luxembourgish delegation had the opportunity to talk to a number of start-ups and to encourage them to consider the Grand Duchy as headquarters for their future European activities.
On 12 April 2016, Pierre Gramegna was the guest of the BayPay Forum (BayPay Forum Thought Leadership Series). Interviewed by BayPay Forum founder Daniel Chatelain in front of an audience of industry professionals, the Minister had the opportunity of expressing his point of view on future developments in the financial sector. And indeed he emphasised the Grand Duchy's openness, dynamism and reliability, as well as its long tradition of financial innovation.
HRH the Hereditary Grand Duke and the Minister of Finance also had talks with the managements of PayPal and StubHub (a subsidiary of eBay), discussing the development strategies of both sides, and the Grand Duchy's place in this context. In a similar vein, the delegation also visited a number of other Fintech companies interested in creating an establishment – or even developing their presence – in the Grand Duchy.
And lastly the trip provided an opportunity to follow up on the Minister of Finance's mission to San Francisco in March 2014, with a visit to Wells Fargo Asset Management. After this earlier mission, in December 2014, Wells Fargo set up a management company in the Grand Duchy. The bank is currently considering further reinforcing its presence in the Grand Duchy.
Pierre Gramegna said, 'This mission has shown that the Government's strategy of diversification is bearing fruit. We are therefore expecting over the coming months more applications for e-money licences, and the establishment of new activities in the Grand Duchy.'
(Source: press release from the Ministry of the Economy)