Tech Fast Trend: Fintechs are about more than financial services

Australia’s booming fintech sector is generating world-class innovations from companies that are experiencing staggering rates of growth – meaning they are perfect candidates for Deloitte’s 2016 Technology Fast 50 program. But remember that fintechs are not the only candidates. Any company touching technology – from media, communications, software and hardware to life sciences and healthcare and clean energy – that is innovating, creating disruption and growing, has the opportunity to be part of the Technology Fast 50 program. The program is about more than just financial services, as indeed are the fintechs themselves.

Continuous disruption

The ‘fintech revolution’ is not only about disrupting traditional financial services. The genesis of Deloitte Technology Fast 50 2015 company Ingogo, for instance, was triggered by a frustration with catching taxis. Addressing the payment aspect of this experience was essential to the solution, but not the focus.

Deloitte research with the World Economic Forum shows that innovation happens where there is customer friction and large profit pools. And given there is usually a financial aspect to the exciting innovations making every day experiences simpler, more mobile-friendly or more efficient, fintechs are a natural evolution.

This progressive movement towards continuous disruption as the new normal is all about wanting to deliver an improved experience; removing a frustration or making things easier, as opposed to wanting to disrupt the financial services sector.

Developing an efficient Australian market

Collaboration between regulators, incumbents and new entrants is essential when it comes to delivering new innovations to market in a way that simultaneously accelerates better service to customers while also protecting them.

Crowd-sourced equity funding, electronic payment systems and data were called out in the Government’s response to Murray’s Financial Services Inquiry as areas requiring consultation and legislation. Together with ASIC’s creation of a Digital Finance Advisory Committee and an Innovation Hub, these are welcome initiatives to advance the growth of a vibrant, robust and globally competitive fintech community in Australia.

The rapid acceleration of fintech investments

With an estimated US$6.6 trillion of revenues at stake in global retail financial services alone, the continued surge of innovation and investment in fintechs will continue. Investors have also recognised the richness of this opportunity, with US$12.6 billion invested globally last year in the fintech sector – more than three times the investment in 2013.

With two of our top three Deloitte Technology Fast 50 2015 winners being Fintechs – Prospa, Australia’s largest online business lender, and Ingogo, the taxi bookings and payments service, we’re on the lookout for more fintech nominations this year and are keen to see the innovations they have introduced to the market and the growth they are achieving. So ‘watch this space!’

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