Is Asia Leapfrogging the Rest of The World in Fintech?
With the CardLinx Asia Forum coming up on February 6th in Tokyo, now is a good time to assess whether Asia is overtaking the rest of the world in fin-tech and digital commerce. Just over a year ago, CardLinx President and CEO Silvio Tavares penned the article “Will Fintech Create A New Silicon Valley in Asia?” and many of his predictions are coming true.
Of the 10 largest publicly quoted technology companies in the world, 5 are headquartered in Asia with China, Japan and South Korea leading the way. With their mobile, tech savvy consumers, e-commerce sales in China already surpass 22% of total retail sales while US e-commerce represents less than 14% of retail sales.
“The rapid growth of fintech in Asia has been under the radar while the innovation of payments and technology is on hyper-speed. Asia, especially East Asia (China, Japan and South Korea), is one of the world’s most connected regions…leadership in fintech comes down to great new ideas plus effective partnering with incumbent players. This dynamic plays into the strengths of Asian economies. The future looks very bright for the fintech industry in Asia. Fintech’s rise there could lead to the creation of a Silicon Triangle between Seoul, Tokyo and Beijing. You could even call this Silicon Valley version 2.0,” wrote Tavares.
The ascendance of Asia’s fintech powerhouses has shown how companies like CardLinx members Samsung, Rakuten and Sumitomo Mitsui Card have branched out of their core business to launch innovative digital payments, card-linking and online-to-offline business. The Wall Street Journal’s recent article, “For These Young Entrepreneurs, Silicon Valley Is, Like, Lame” demonstrates Asia’s confidence in developing their own platforms and uses for fintech, big data and AI. Meet many of these innovators from Japan, China, and South Korea at the CardLinx Asia Forum.
Cardlytics Seeks to Raise $75 Million in IPO
CardLinx member Cardlytics is fundraising for an initial public offering. The Atlanta-based card-linking technology pioneer is working with underwriters J.P. Morgan and Wells Fargo to raise $75 million. Their planned ticker symbol on the NASDAQ is CDLX.
Investment in the fintech industry continues to grow at the start of 2018 providing strategic opportunities for card-linking technology companies as well as banks, one of the largest acquirers of CLO technology in 2018. According to a December study released by Statista, 82% of U.S commercial banks plan to increase fintech investment over the next three years. At the start of 2018 several prominent investment units have already been created including Standard Chartered’s SC Ventures, BB&T’s $50 million fintech investment unit, and Bono’s $2 billion Rise Fund created with private equity firm TPG.
Visa and Dynamics Launch Wallet Card That Includes Offers and Coupons
At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Visa and Dynamics revealed the Dynamics Wallet Card™, an internet-connected wallet payment card. The Visa Wallet Card is the same size and shape as a normal Visa credit or debit card and includes a cell phone chip and cell phone antenna for seamless data transfer. The wallet card has the capacity to access multiple cards, which are accessed through an on-card display that provides account information, notifies security alerts and presents coupons to the cardholder. Additional benefits to card issuers and consumers include instant issuance, greater security, and a self-charging battery.
As the ecosystem of internet-connected devices expands it is not surprising that it now includes payment cards themselves. Visa and Dynamics’ wallet payment card provides a multi-issuer, multi-retailer platform to present consumers card-linked offers and loyalty benefits. With 90% of retail sales still occurring in-store, the wallet payment card takes advantage of entrenched consumer behavior of reaching into their wallets to pay with the ease and features of a digital wallet.