Looking beyond the hype at fintech in Southeast Asia
From the offices of Venture Capital firms to the financial services districts, you may not be able to escape the promising whispers of fintech startups. Take a structural shift to mobile, an ever decreasing cost of computing power, the availability of lots of (big!) data, mix in one part artificial intelligence, one part distributed ledgers and we have the perfect recipe for how technology will change the face of banking and insurance forever.
Jokes aside, in certain areas, the unbundling of financial services is truly underway. Regulatory change, a deep customer mistrust, and a seriously out of tune with reality technology stack and physical infrastructure all contribute to the opportunity to build exciting new companies in Financial Services.
As a result, venture capital funding for fintech has rapidly expanded. According to KPMG and CB Insights, a total of $5.7 billion was invested in fintech in the first quarter of 2016 alone. While companies in China and the U.S. receive most of this funding, Southeast Asia fintech investment has increased significantly as well.