What is Fintech?
Fintech is short for Financial Technology and it is the application of new information technologies to products and services in the financial industry. Fintech is very broad in nature and it ranges from payment processing, robo-advisory, personal finance software, crowdfunding platform, peer-to-peer lending, and virtual currencies.
According to KPMG, global investments in fintech ventures have grown significantly in recent years and reached $111.8 billion in 2018.
There are four groups of players in the fintech ecosystem, each competing to achieve a competitive advantage over rivals, get ahead of regulatory changes, and adapt to global and societal shifts.
Large Financial Institutions
They are well-established banks and insurance companies. These companies are also called the “incumbent” as they are traditional financial services companies embracing the use of new technologies to do business. This group of players includes Allstate, Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, and Wells Fargo.
In recent years, we have seen the big techs diversifying their business into the financial services space. Apply Pay and Facebook’s Libra are two prominent examples.
They are companies that use technology to build payment processing and settlement infrastructures. They include American Express, Fiserv, and Mastercard.
Startups or Unicorns
They are the disruptors of the financial services industry. These companies, often startups, use innovative technology or process to provide value to customers that traditional companies have not. A few examples are Stripe, Robinhood, Bill.com, and Grab.
Fintech has taken the financial services industry by storm, and it is our view that fintech will continue to disrupt and reshape the business landscape of the financial services industry in the next decade. At the core, big data, artificial intelligence, and automation are the key drivers of fintech and we anticipate this sector will continue to grow at a rapid pace.
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