If you want to see your profits grow by more than 500% in just one year, look to FinTech opportunities. According to a recent survey, around a third of firms engaged in FinTech expect to have doubled or even quintupled their profits in 2018 – and that's leading to increasing investment, and much of this is being targeted in and from Ireland.
FinTech – a boom industry
The results of the first ever Ireland FinTech Census by Enterprise Ireland in collaboration with EY suggests that the growth potential of the global FinTech industry is huge.
According to the findings of this survey, released on 20 December 2018, almost one-third (32%) of FinTech firms anticipated global revenue growth of between 100% and 500% in 2018, with 17% of respondents expecting global revenue growth of greater than 500%. Over one quarter (27%) identified the UK and Europe as regions for future expansion, while 26% identified AsiaPac as a region for expansion.
The survey also found that Irish FinTech firms are seeking investment. Nearly one in five (19%) Irish FinTech companies plan to raise €5m or more in their next funding round, with 22% expecting to raise at least EUR1m.
Appetite for disruption
Finch Capital's February 2019 decision to establish an active presence in the Irish FinTech market was yet another reminder of how Ireland is emerging as one of the world's most attractive locations for this rapidly growing industry.
A leading early-stage venture capital firm with offices in Amsterdam, London, and Singapore, Finch Capital announced on 12 February 2019, that it is dedicating up to €20m to Irish start-ups in the FinTech sector, following a €10m investment from Enterprise Ireland, the Irish Government's investment promotion agency. The fund will invest mainly in the financial technology and deep tech sectors, including artificial intelligence, security, and the internet of things.
The announcement was made at Enterprise Ireland's international FinTech event "Appetite for Disruption," which focused on showcasing Ireland's FinTech sector capabilities to international financial services buyers.
A study by German consulting firm Roland Berger concluded that just under a half of European-based FinTech firms are keen to expand their operations in Ireland, making the country one of the most popular jurisdictions in Europe for FinTech expansion. But what marks Ireland out as an ideal location for this sector?
Roland Berger's report shows that Ireland provides the best accumulation of locational advantages for the FinTech industry in Europe, including the availability of know-how and talent, the open-mindedness of the regulatory authorities, the availability of knowledgeable investors, and regulatory predictability.
Not only has the Government made available financial support for FinTech start-ups through initiatives such as the Competitive Start Fund, the fostering of innovation in the country's financial services industry is also a major aim of the "IFS2020" initiative, the Government's strategy for the further development of the International Financial Services Sector in Ireland.
Described as a five-year "whole-of-government strategy" with substantial input from the private sector, IFS2020 is an ambitious project to make Ireland the global location of choice for international financial services. Among the plan's five strategic priorities is the promotion of research, innovation, and entrepreneurship in the IFS sector, with a particular focus on financial technology and governance, risk, and compliance.
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