New Year means new opportunities! Business ventures have been blowing up these past years and with Covid-19, it has accelerated the digital payment ecosystem to contribute to the BNPL and contactless payments. 2021 saw the city-state show support for the sector with the launch of a S$12 million blockchain research program.
Singapore Fintech Report 2021: Blockchain takes center stage
One of the fintech verticals that has become well-known in Singapore is blockchain and cryptocurrencies, which now dominate the local fintech scene. Of the 430 fintech startups identified in Singapore, 19% operate in the blockchain and cryptocurrency vertical, making them the largest segment, on the payments front (16%), investment and wealthtech (14%), and regtech (11%).
The Singapore Blockchain Innovation Program aims to accelerate technology development and adoption, and will involve nearly 75 companies to conceptualize 17 blockchain-related projects over the next three years in sectors starting with trade and logistics, and supply chain. This year also saw the Payment Services Act (PSA) come into effect, which requires cryptocurrency businesses to obtain a license from the MAS to comply with anti-money laundering/combating terrorism financing (AML/CFT) regulations. Singapore’s new law has been lauded for providing regulatory clarity on emerging asset classes and industries, and potentially luring companies in the space to set up shop in the city-state. That is why, it is great to catch up with the latest fintech news and updates to support Singapore’s fintech society. Below are the Top 4 rising payment startup ventures that are making noise in early 2022:
Top 4 rising payment startup ventures in Singapore
Company Value: $5.5B (source)
Airwallex Pte Ltd is a payments platform transforming the way businesses move and manage money globally. It is one of the fastest growing financial technology companies, operating across Asia-Pacific, Europe and North America today with over 1,000 employees in 19 locations globally. On 13th January, the fintech platform announced its official launch in Singapore, following its grant of a Major Payment Institution (MPI) license by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). The Singapore team is expected to quadruple by the end of 2022 and you can be one of them! Click the link here to apply to their opening job vacancy
Company Value: $600M (source)
Founded by a group of friends in Silicon Valley, Xfers aims to accelerate financial access within Southeast Asia by enabling businesses to accept payments and send money through bank transfers, e-wallets and offline channels. The company is a Major Payment Institution licensed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore for e-money issuance. Xfers boasts a range of last-mile financial rails including the Xfers Send, Xfers Accept, Xfers Wallet, and StraitsX.
PayFazz Financial, a Jakarta Fintech Startup invested $30M to join partnership for Xfers’ enterprise solutions, regulatory compliance, and infrastructure in exchange for expansion and sizable agent network in Indonesia. With this strategic investment, the two companies will form a new entity called Fazz Financial Group (FFG).
“The COVID-19 pandemic lockdown has also driven a big surge in online sales and transactions across Southeast Asia, so there is a huge need for online payments by businesses and merchants across the region” – Tianwei Liu (Xfers co-founder)
Company Value: $3B (source)
PineLabs Pte Ltd, Singapore’s Unicorn Fintech startup is a payments platform for merchants in India and South-east Asia that offers solutions for in-store and online payments as well as prepaid, loyalty and “pay later” programmes. It closed a US$600 million (S$807 million) fund-raising round with some of the world’s largest investors, including Fidelity Management & Research and BlackRock, as it targets an initial public offering (IPO) within 18. The digital payments provider backed by Sequoia India and Mastercard, is moving ahead with preparations for a US listing and seeks to raise about US$500 million (S$678 million), according to people familiar with the matter. If you are interested in joining, you can check here for their job openings.
Company Value: $64M (source)
Brankas, specialises in enabling access to financial and identity data, payments initiation and other developer tools. It provides financial institutions, fintechs and online businesses with API-based solutions, and has raised US$20 million in Series B funding led by early-stage investor Insignia Ventures Partners. It also operates in Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam. Following the fund-raising, it is looking to deepen its payments, data and API product menu in Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand. (API stands for Application Programming Interface, a software intermediary that enables two applications to talk to each other.) The round was joined by Brankas’ existing backers Beenext and Integra Partners. Other investors are payments giant Visa, AFG Partners and Treasury International, which is backed by fintech entrepreneurs Jeff Cruttenden of Acorns and Eli Broverman of Betterment.
While funding raised by fintechs globally almost doubled from 2020 to S$137 billion in 2021, funding for Singapore fintechs has grown by 2.5 times between 2020 and 2021. The most recent quarter, Q3 2021, has been the strongest yet, with about S$1.9 billion raised by local fintechs. It is all the hype right now and if you want to know more about E-payments, you can always learn more about with CFTE’s Payments in Finance (offering 80-90% subsidy for Singaporean Residents & PR’s). If you are interested in managing Fintech ventures, CFTE’s Intrapreneurship Course is right for you! Or you want to find out about the global fintech startup, check out our Ranking of Largest Fintech Companies in 2022.