According to a report by Boston Consulting Group (BCG) and QED Investors, the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region is projected to overtake the United States and become the leading fintech market worldwide by 2030, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 27%. The report, titled “Global Fintech 2023: Reimagining the Future of Finance,” emphasizes that the majority of growth will come from emerging APAC regions, such as India, China, and Indonesia. These regions have large fintechs, sizable underbanked populations, a high number of SMEs, and a tech-savvy youth and middle class, compared to developed countries like Japan and South Korea.
India, in particular, is highlighted in the report for its significant potential to leapfrog the intermediate stages of fintech development that more developed financial markets have undergone, especially with the help of supportive regulation. The report notes that the Indian regulator is playing an active role in shaping the market by using vehicles such as UPI, Aadhar, Rupay, and Digilocker. More than 1.3 billion Indians are enrolled in Aadhar, which is the world’s largest biometric identity system. Furthermore, UPI has processed $1.25 trillion in transactions in FY21–2022 and is growing rapidly.
The report suggests that regulators worldwide need to act urgently and thoughtfully to facilitate the sector’s growth more holistically. The report notes that while regulators tend to react to the latest predicament, the recent bank crises and massive financial frauds have made them more sensitive to asset/liability management. However, they should take care not to overregulate the industry and stifle innovation while creating guardrails.
The report highlights that expanding GDP (at a CAGR of 7% per year), the rise of the educated middle class, younger demographics coming of age, and increasing fintech penetration will drive fintech revenues in India. Spread businesses, such as neobanks and lending platforms, will face challenges in developed countries but play a critical role in emerging markets. Furthermore, the report identifies lending, neobanking, and wealthtech segments as further growth areas.
The report advises fintech’s to enhance their competitiveness and pursue aggressive strategies, including talent acquisition, jobs generation, career options, gaining market share by entering new geographies/markets, and exploring M&A opportunities. Additionally, it is essential to take an active role in shaping and embracing forward-looking regulations that enhance customer confidence and drive higher valuations.
Asia-Pacific: APAC Fintech Market Trends
China will continue dominating the APAC Fintech Market or Industry. Previous year trends and projections are evident of this fact. Few takeaways from the report are –
- The fintech sector is poised for rapid growth in the Asia-Pacific region. Within this ever-evolving fintech landscape, open banking, regulatory efforts, abundant opportunities, and increased investments are expanding swiftly. Notably, China and India exhibit a robust presence in financial services, while Singapore leads with exceptional mobile payment solutions, fostering wider acceptance in the region.
- Cutting-edge fintech technologies and fintech companies are swiftly becoming integrated into the daily lives of mature nations such as Australia and Japan. The use of fintech-driven services by consumers has surged, even tripling in certain cases, within just two years across key Asia-Pacific regions.
- Fintech adoption stands at an more than 65% in Hong Kong, Singapore, and South Korea, and reaches around 58% in Australia. While India is now closely rivaling Asia’s top digital influencer, most markets still trail significantly behind China, which boasts an impressive 87% penetration rate.
- In the realm of finance app installations, developing markets outpace developed ones by a substantial 70%. Notably, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam have all witnessed substantial growth in demand for fintech apps.
- In the Asian landscape, China remains at the forefront of FinTech innovation. FinTech services have become an integral part of the daily lives of Chinese consumers. They are characterized by their modern technology and seamless integration with China’s influential e-commerce and social media platforms, such as Alibaba and WeChat.
- The People’s Bank of China has introduced a comprehensive three-year strategy to foster the growth of the country’s fintech industry. Substantial progress has already been made towards its implementation. For instance, a fintech sandbox is currently under development and undergoing testing in Beijing. This strategy is expected to support future fintech investments, particularly in crucial areas like risk management, cybersecurity, big data, artificial intelligence, distributed databases, and authentication.
The fintech market in the Asia-Pacific region stands apart from the global landscape. While on a global scale, many fintech startups are already directly shaping the financial sector, in the Asia-Pacific, startups are either emulating global initiatives or just beginning to make an impact and disrupt their respective local established financial institutions.
Some of the key players in this market include –
- Ant Group
- Policy Bazar
- Harmoney, and more.