A future of infinite horizons

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Deloitte Luxembourg organized its ninth edition of the annual Horizon Conference at the Philharmonie Luxembourg on 4 April. The event gathered 250 industry professionals from across the globe to discover what lies ahead for the financial sector as it faces, with some uncertainty, the evolving financial industry landscape.

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05/04/2019 |
  • Martino Pascal Deloitte press

    Pascal Martino, Banking Leader and Deloitte Digital Leader in Luxembourg

The conference’s objective was to unearth what the future has in store for professionals as they navigate their way through this new territory. True to this mission statement, John Psaila, Managing Partner at Deloitte Luxembourg, revealed that the next edition of the Horizon Conference will break with tradition and extend the conference to a full day event, opening up to the next generation of leaders and innovators.

Stepping out of the comfort zone

The Philharmonie opened the floor to a number of inspirational speakers and experts in their field as they had the opportunity to address concerns that audience members encountered on their disruptive journey.

The event carried a clear message: it is time to embrace change and break with tradition. Professionals should be comfortable with the idea of disruption, which often goes hand-in-hand with stepping outside of the norm and pushing the boundaries to reveal a new era of opportunity.

“The Horizon Conference offers its audience the chance to break the cycle of tradition. By opening up the conversation to less conventional channels, the event encourages professionals to look outside their standard parameters,” explains Pascal Martino, Banking Leader and Deloitte Digital Leader in Luxembourg. “To succeed, we must not hold back, but move forward with conviction—our speakers are prime examples of this. With change comes opportunity; it is up to us to seize it. The emphasis on this is clear as many factors—including technology, regulation, politics and more—are increasingly changing the way we work. The industry is not waiting for anyone, so hop on board!”

Although unable to attend the conference in person, Pierre Gramegna, Luxembourg’s Minister of Finance, joined the event via video link. During his speech, he was able to lend the audience some expert insight on the current financial landscape and share his views on how we should prepare for the future.

All speakers had inspirational stories of growth and determination. With emphasis on the message of exploring new paths, the room heard from Cathy O’Dowd. As a motivational speaker, O’Dowd enthralled the audience with her story as the first women to climb Mount Everest from both sides. Dr. Daniel Susskind, Economist at the University of Oxford, offered a more conventional, but no less disruptive topic posing the question: “What is the future of your profession?” Mikko Hypponen, Security Expert and Chief Research Officer at F-Secure also shared his knowledge on an issue playing on many companies’ minds, cyber security. Finally, the event was not complete until we heard from Gina Miller, Businesswoman, transparency campaigner and Founder of Lead Not Leave, as she addressed the ever-pressing question: “Brexit, what’s next?”

In a final flourish, the audience was treated to the unexpected addition of a video address from Paul Cobban, Chief Data & Transformation Officer, DBS. Cobban emphasized the importance of creating an environment—both internally within an organization, as well as externally—where people feel confident about transformation. His key message was in clear harmony with the other speakers of the day: pioneering is about being prepared, but also flexible in terms of straying from the conventional.

Recalibrating the compass

While much of the financial industry’s future remains to be seen, the conference was sure to leave its audience with a clear idea of how to tackle the challenges ahead. As Luxembourg continues to cement itself as an influential European business hub, the necessity to embrace growth and transformation is key to a successful future. The financial landscape is at a pivotal moment in time...and the possibilities are infinite!

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