The University of Cape Town (UCT) has become one of the first tertiary institutions in Africa to offer a degree specifically designed to equip students with the critical skills and knowledge to embrace the technological revolution in the financial services sector. One of its key focus areas will be blockchain technology, or the distributed ledger system, that has given rise to new crypto-currencies such as bitcoin and ether. The crypto-currency market is reportedly now worth more than $50bn and the use of virtual currencies is gaining traction in SA. A June 2017 paper by the International Monetary Fund suggested that banks should seriously consider investing in crypto-currencies as "rapid advances in digital technology are transforming the financial services landscape". Co-Pierre Georg, a senior lecturer at UCT’s African Institute of Financial Markets and Risk Management, said SA’s financial services industry faces a significant challenge: the rise of financial technology, or fintec...

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