The world today sees a growth of cashless societies where digital payments overtake payment in cash or fiat currencies. The growth is propelled by many factors, including how the pandemic forces a great number of people to stay indoors and purchase online or digitally and avoid engaging in cash-based exchanges for safety measures. Many payment platforms still rely on banks and are either integrated or created by the banks so to create a true cashless society, more people will need to be banked and connected.
According to Deloitte, USD 61 Billion was invested into fintech from both traditional and non-traditional sources as of Q3 2021. Compared to pre-pandemic 2019, only USD 39 billion was invested into the industry. The growth might also be caused by their positioning as fintech can function as an enabler rather than a competition to banks; with both parties engaging with different niches and market segments; offering different services or solutions that their respective segments need. This edition of InnoVEX Editorial will cover the fintech exhibitors of InnoVEX ONLINE 2021 that provide specific services that conventional banking and financial services might not provide.
Solution for the Unbanked
The Fintech Times reported that in March 2021, approximately 2 billion people do not have access to financial services because their data is held in a physical only format instead of online integrated. The efforts to provide access or alternate service to the unbanked might also be delayed due to ambiguous, yet highly specific local regulations that adds an additional barrier. The way to circumvent these issues might be in the form of private or 3rd party fintech platforms that still operate within legal limits but are not burdened with the same regulatory scrutiny as banks do.
Migrant workers and expatriates alike often become unbanked even if temporarily due to legal limitations, incomplete/ unavailable data or other factors that are specific to the segment. Cash remittance to overseas via traditional banking services also often require fees that are prohibitively high or take too long to complete. This segment is the focus of Ayannah from the Philippines who aim to provide affordable and accessible digital commerce and payment services to unbanked residents in emerging markets as well as provide greater control to unbanked migrants's remittance transactions. Ayannah's services are currently separated into 3 different purposes: payment to brick and mortar retailers, B2C remittance, as well as international and domestic remittance transactions across different networks.
Early Fintech education for a Better Customer Base
Counted among the 2 billion unbanked population are the children who are legally too young to have control of their own finances or to legally take possession of financial assets. Many children and young individuals have their bank account under their parents or legal guardian, but it is never too early to properly educate them on the current trends of fintech and its related technologies such as cryptocurrency. With rapid development and changes, some speculate that cryptocurrencies may have a much bigger role to play in the future of payment systems and banking.
Strive of the UK who is also one of the InnoVEX Online 2021 Pitch Contest Finalists aims to achieve this by making cryptocurrency safe, fun, and easy for children. The hardware part of their solution is a toy in the shape of a piggy bank that doubles as a crypto mining rig, display unit, and other functions. The system is integrated with an app for parental use that can set chores, goals, rewards, and more for the children to teach them about the future of money from an early age.
Many existing fintech or financial service solutions are made to perform multiple purposes for as many people as possible at once. While they may work for their intended users; it might be difficult for them to provide service for a market segment the providers never considered before; where access to their services can be limited if not outright impossible. On the other hand, startup developed technologies and applications can often reach further than existing solutions because of a different focus and dedicated purpose. In a question between achieving purpose and expanding reach; there are still multiple aspects to consider and perhaps no singular criteria can be used as a measure of success/ failure. As with many others, the main question is perhaps whether the applications were able to fulfill their raison d'etre and whether it was a worthy goal to pursue in the first place. For a certain market segment, institutionalized financial services might fall short of their need, but 3rd party fintech may just be the solution they need.
Learn more about Ayannah, Strive, and more InnoVEX ONLINE exhibitors here.
Look forward to more updates from InnoVEX
Operating for the whole year, the InnoVEX ONLINE platform is active 24/7 and visitors can check out the exhibitors at any time and even contact them directly through the PinChat function built into the platform. There will also be news from InnoVEX regularly that will be published and sent via the weekly InnoVEX Tech Startup News digital newsletter. The content will also include highlighted exhibitors, pavilions, and other features of InnoVEX ONLINE 2021. Subscribe to the InnoVEX Tech Startup News here and never miss an update from InnoVEX.
InnoVEX 2022 is now open for Registration
In addition to the online platform, the 2022 InnoVEX onsite exhibition will take place in Taipei, Taiwan from May 24-27,2022. Online registration for both the hybrid exhibition or the InnoVEX ONLINE platform have started for global exhibitors. For more info or registration details, please click here.