China gains on the UK as global fintech boom continues
THE UK is losing ground to China in the global fintech market, despite home-grown talent blooming in the P2P sector.
According to the latest ‘Fintech 100’ rankings, which are published by fintech venture capital firm H2 Ventures and accountancy giant KPMG, four of the top five fintech innovators are from China. Only one UK name made the top 10 – Atom Bank, a personalized mobile banking platform which was established in 2014.
UK-based fintech firms occupied 13 of the top 100 spots, down from 18 in 2015, while the US held almost a quarter (24) of the rankings.
Hangzhou-based Ant Financial took the number one spot in the ‘top 50 established innovators’, with Chinese lender Qudian, peer-to-peer platform Lufax, ‘insuretech’ firm Zhong An and New York-based healthcare app Oscar rounding out the top five.
Funding Circle was the only UK-based P2P lender to crack the top 50, reaching 12th position, while beleaguered US platforms Lending Club and Prosper ranked at numbers 27 and 28, respectively.
Online lending models are on the rise, however – 32 of the 100 companies have business models related to lending, up from 22 last year.
“This year’s Fintech 100 shows that the UK continues to be a powerhouse for global fintech,” said Warren Mead, global co-lead of KPMG’s fintech practice. “The UK’s regulatory framework encourages innovation, there is excellent access to capital and skills and London is the world’s leading financial centre.
“But the emergence of China as a market leader, and the increasing globalisation of fintech means that UK policy makers, regulators and the industry will have to continue to work hard to maintain our position.”
The list also demonstrated some new trends in the fintech space, such as the rise of ‘mega funding rounds’ valued at $1bn (£820m) or above and growth in the aggregate level of capital raised. The top 50 names raised a total of $14.6bn in capital since 2015, an increase of more than 40 per cent year-on-year.
The Fintech 100 was created following analysis of a number of factors such as total capital raised, rate of capital raising, geographic and sector diversity, consumer and marketplace traction, and whether or not a firm has an ‘X factor’ in terms of service or innovation.