Fintech and Digital Banks in Southeast Asia

Goals

To provide a list of the biggest fintech/neobanks and payment gateway providers across Southeast Asia so that a list of the major players in this region can be compiled. Preference will be given to companies operating in Thailand and Singapore.

Early Findings

  • According to financial literacy website Investopedia, "Financial technology (Fintech) is used to describe new tech that seeks to improve and automate the delivery and use of financial services. At its core, fintech is utilized to help companies, business owners and consumers better manage their financial operations, processes, and lives by utilizing specialized software and algorithms that are used on computers and, increasingly, smartphones."
  • Digital banks are usually considered the online-only arm of a bigger player in the banking sector, whilst neobanks are completely digital, existing independently to traditional banks. Neobanks (also called challenger banks) and their services are only available through mobile applications and personal computers.
  • A payment gateway provider is a company that enables and facilitates online payments for consumers and businesses.
  • The fintech banking industry in Southeast Asia countries is small but rapidly growing with more and more neobanks expected to enter the sector as 60% of consumers say they are willing to shift to these challenger banks in the next 5 years. Countries in Southeast Asia with burgeoning digital banking sectors include Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam and the Philippines.

Thailand


Summary of Findings

  • The initial one hour of research was able to identify the growing popularity of fintech as it relates to digital banking in the Southeast Asia region especially in countries such as Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam and the Philippines. Digital banking in this research included online banks that are associated with traditional, physical banking institutions (digital banks), fully independent online-only banks (neobanks) and companies that facilitate online and mobile payments for consumers and businesses (payment gateway providers).
  • There are other fintech companies operating in the Southeast Asia market, for example, those that deal with insurance, budget tools and accounting software for businesses. These were not included in the research and attached spreadsheet. If information on these companies is desired, please let us know by selecting the appropriate further research.
  • Specifically in Thailand, we found that there are a few digital banks, as defined above, and payment gateway providers that are popular in the country.

Proposed next steps:

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