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China Edges Closer to FinTech Top Spot; UK’s Position Threatened

Last Updated March 4, 2021 4:51 PM
Rebecca Campbell
Last Updated March 4, 2021 4:51 PM

A new report suggests that China could push the U.K. off the FinTech top spot as Chinese companies overshadow U.K. firms.

The report, from KPMG and H2 Ventures, found that compared to 2015 there were only 13 U.K. firms in the yearly FinTech 100 report. In 2015, that number is reported to have been 18. However, only one U.K. firm, Atom Bank, was reported to be in the top ten.

Compared this to Chinese companies and while the report detailed that there were eight firms listed in the top 100, four of them made it to the top five. These are Ant Financial, Qudian, Lufax, and ZhongAn.

Of course, while China is reported to be a potential threat to the U.K.’s lead as the hub for FinTech, there were also 17 other countries who made the top 50 established list. These included new entries from the likes of France, Mexico, Singapore, and South Africa. This is an increase from the 13 that were listed in 2015.

The annual FinTech 100 report is split in two with 50 established firms and 50 emerging. They are ranked on the following factors: total capital raised, traction, rate of capital raising, the x-factor, and geographic and sector diversity.

Compared to 2015’s report, there has been a 40 percent capital increase in the level of funding with established firms bringing in an extra $14.6 billion.

Is London Feeling the Pressure?

Before the EU Referendum vote in June, which saw millions of people deciding to vote to leave the EU, there were fears that a Brexit could cost the U.K. economy around $5 billion over the next five years. However, since the Brexit results earlier this year, concerns have been raised questioning whether the U.K. will remain the number one top spot for FinTech startups.

UK Fintech
Brexit presents a dark cloud over the UK’s burgeoning Fintech industry.

Yet, despite this, the U.K Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has approved several blockchain companies in a bid to keep the U.K. as an attractive hot spot for businesses to turn to. Not only that, but compared to the U.S., which recently issued a House bill aiming to prevent financial businesses from moving to the U.K., it seems that the U.K. remains in the lead in the FinTech race.

If London FinTech is feeling any pressure post-Brexit, many, however, still consider it a leader. In fact, any suggestion that London is struggling will seem a surprise to many considering that the FCA recently approved 24 out of 69 applications as part of its FinTech Sandbox.

It remains to be seen whether China or any other country is strong enough to push the U.K. from its top spot, but for now it can rest assured that it remains in the lead.

Images of Beijing and the Big Ben from Shutterstock.