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Business Lunch: The Changing Landscape of Australia’s Financial Services Sector October 26, 2016

The latest from Australia’s Fintech Community:

Future shining bright for Australia’s Fintech sector. Two years ago, Australia’s Fintech sector hardly existed. In the last 12 months, the eco-system has skyrocketed into new areas of innovation, with the emergence of sub-sects such as Insurtech and Medtech. Recent growth has been sparked by nearly $2 billion in new venture capital funds raised locally in the last 18 months.

Disruption flow on effects are filtering through. With more Australians openly investigating financial services start-ups, by way of lending providers, or other money management organisations. The banking sector is riding a new wave of significant disruption from these stable and reputable early stage market players. Australia’s current financial landscape has often seen SMEs sitting in no-man’s land when it comes to finding the right loan organisation and establishing short-term lending options. Online business lender, Prospa, has recently reached $200 million in loan originations within its first 5 years of operation.

Perth emerging as new growth hub for Australia. Due to its close proximity to Asia, Perth is emerging as a new growth hub for Australian businesses. Many entrepreneurs and start-ups are staying put in the city and launching their businesses from there, as the location provides a strategic gateway to international markets like Singapore and China. Australia’s start-ups are leveraging the favourable economic conditions in Western Australia in order to drive regional and global expansion. 

Risk and regulation are everyday business matters. With Australia having a ‘gold class’ reputation around the globe as one of the hardest regulatory environments to break into, our Fintech start-ups are well-positioned for tackling the red tape of international markets. However, the eco-system’s financial newcomers are not immune to risk. Breaking into the industry at a smaller scale doesn’t mean the hazards of the money market decrease. Fintech companies of all shapes and sizes need to heavily focus on the acute and immediate risks that the business model presents.

Ownership of data moving to customers. The stronghold on financial data in this country might be on its way to loosening up, as more and more Australian consumers would like to see their transactional banking data belong with them and not their financial institution. This data could be then used by customers to shop around for better alternatives, opening the opportunity up for competitors and the industry to benefit from this shared information.

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