Fintech is increasingly becoming globally distributed, and global companies are setting up new ventures in flourishing ecosystems so they don't miss out on the developments in other markets.
This week, US-based bank Standard Chartered and South African multinational internet and media group Naspers announced plans to dip into Indias fintech scene.
Here's what we know about Standard Chartered's and Naspers' plans so far:
- Standard Chartered will open a fintech platform for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in India, per BankingTech .The bank will use data sources to integrate with digital business solution providers for services including business loans, invoice and supply chain finance, and commercial insurance. The platform has been tested in a beta version and will make its first transactions in Q2 2019. The SMB sector in India accounts for 30% of the gross domestic product (GDP), as well as 45% of exports, suggesting that Standard Chartered will have a large addressable market for its platform.
- And Naspers plans to spend around $1 billion in India so it can replicate its blockbuster bet on China's Tencent Holdings, per Bloomberg .The firm is currently in talks to invest $200 million in alt lender for businesses Capital Float and payments security firm Wimbo.
Indias fintech scene is thriving and we'll likely see more global companies set up ventures in the region.Interest in India from foreign players in India continues to increase: DBS Bank introduced a wholly owned subsidiary in India earlier this year, and JPMorgan partnered with the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabads Centre for Innovation, Incubation, and Entrepreneurship (CIIE) in 2018 to set up a Financial Inclusion Lab that's focused on fintech startups.
This increased interest in India is also evident in its funding deals: The number of deals above $100 million rose from only three in 2017 to five in 2018. Additionally, more developed fintech ecosystems are becoming saturated, while India still has one of the largest unbanked populations in the world: 191 million Indians over the age of 15 are without a bank account, suggesting that demand for fintech solutions is high. With time, we expect more players to set up base or shift their investment focus to the country, helping the fintech space to continue to thrive.
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