The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) announced today that the 380 participating investors enrolled for the Singapore FinTech Festival’s deal-making platform, MATCH, have indicated intentions to invest up to USD 6.2 billion in ASEAN enterprises next year. An additional USD 6 billion has been earmarked over the subsequent two years.
FinTech in ASEAN
Money pouring in matches the hype with which FinTech is regarded in the region. Previously, we reported on ASEAN’s voracious appetite FinTech, as well as spinning out supporting infrastructure and business regulatory environments to support the technology. Singapore and Indonesia are reportedly the biggest leaders paving the way for FinTech in ASEAN.
Managing Partner, EY ASEAN and Singapore, Max Loh, said, “On the back of fast-growing economies, a digital-savvy young middle-income population and high mobile and internet penetration rates, we see a thriving entrepreneur and startup ecosystem across ASEAN particularly in the technology and FinTech sectors. Having said that, many SMEs continue to face challenges in seeking access to funding or opportunities to connect with the right investors.”
Hence, it is no surprise that the Singapore FinTech Festival is back for the second year running. Last year alone, more than 30 000 FinTech players, technopreneurs, policy makers, financial industry leaders, investors and academics gathered at the Festival. It is considered the world’s largest FinTech festival and global platform for the FinTech community.
This year, participants will represent more than 100 countries. More than 160 global luminaries and 400 exhibitors will also be present. An exciting line up of conferences, hackathons, awards and networking sessions are some of the events participants can look forward to.
Money Money Money
A new component of this year’s Festival is MATCH (Meet ASEAN’s Talents and Champions). Spelling out exactly what it aims to do, the platform curates and brings together promising next-generation ASEAN enterprises with global private equity and venture capital. The matchmaking exercise was conducted between May to September 2018.
More than 17 000 matches have been generated between 380 participating investors and 840 enterprises.
Interestingly, it was startups and growth stage enterprises which participating investors were most keen on. Close to 60% of the intended ASEAN investment allocation for 2019 was centred around FinTech, healthcare and MedTech, and ICT sectors. Capital which investors planned to deploy was higher than what participating ASEAN enterprises demanded in financing.
Deputy Managing Director of MAS, Jacqueline Loh, said, “The 2018 MATCH exercise demonstrates the upward momentum in both the supply of and demand for growth capital in ASEAN. The interest of the global investment community in our region is promising. MATCH presents a great opportunity to ensure that private capital is deployed towards the development of promising ASEAN enterprises. MAS is committed to supporting this process.”
Winning FinTech Innovations
At the beginning of this month, MAS also announced the 60 finalists of the Global FinTech Hackcelerator and FinTech Awards. Their innovative solutions will be showcased at the Singapore FinTech Festival.
Mr Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief FinTech Officer of MAS said they received an increase in the number of high-quality submissions from FinTech start-ups this year. Concurrently, FinTech talent in the region has seen substantial growth in numbers.
Past year’s finalists have gained from the exposure and connections at the competition. For example, one company which pitched a blockchain technology to deliver international aid has since secured €1 million in investment from both Enterprise Ireland and SGInnovate
Singapore FinTech Festival is organised by the Monetary Authority of Singapore in partnership with The Association of Banks in Singapore and in collaboration with SingEx Holdings.