London, Singapore, New York, Hong Kong and Silicon valley have been ranked as the world’s top fintech hubs, although specialist niches are emerging in Belgium, Ireland, and Shanghai, according a report by Deloitte.
The study is the first output of the Global Fintech Hubs Federation, an initiative by Swift’s innovation arm Innotribe and the UK’s Innovate Finance to create a cross-border and open platform that brings established and emerging hubs together.
The report provides an overview of the fintech hubs emerging globally, with an analysis of local market facts, figures and future trends as well as an index performance score that determines the ease of growing a fintech business in each hub.
The top five hubs ranked by Deloitte come as no surprise, operating in markets with strong financial centres, local talent pools and support from government and regulatory agenices.
Lower down the scale, up-and-coming fintech centres are growing through a focus on particular technologies or areas of innovation within their own local market. For exaple, Belgium has a strong capability within identity management and KYC; Ireland in servicing the asset management industry; and Shanghai in payments. Hubs such as South Korea are adopting a top-down approach, with the licensing of two new internet banks to help drive the FinTech ecosystem.
Bottoming-out the index are under-nourished ecosystems in Mexico, South Africa, India, and Kenya.
“Our analysis of the global hubs has concluded that strong government support at the early stage of ecosystem formation is essential,” notes the report. “Once the hub is established, government support, progressive regulations, a culture of innovation and collaboration, and strong financial services and private investors are the ingredients that enable the growth of a fintech hub.”