Singapore is looking to write another chapter in its economic success story in the coming years by becoming Southeast Asia’s fintech hub. As an incubator of successful start-ups with a valuation exceeding US$1 billion, the country is laying the groundwork to produce its next wave of tech unicorns in the fintech sector, too.
The city-state aims to demonstrate that this success can be replicated among its more than 1,400 fintech start-ups, mostly focused on investment, lending, payments and personal finance, becoming a disruptive force in the industry.
Not surprisingly, many of the changes brought by the COVID-19 era forced companies to accelerate their digitalization ambitions.
The COVID-19 lockdowns and travel restrictions of the last 20 months are “huge market shocks, yet the ensuing digitalization of both consumers and SMEs made the proliferation of fintech faster and long-term market structure healthier,” argues Kelvin Teo, co-founder of peer-to-peer lending platform Funding Societies.