最有看点的互联网金融门户

最有看点的互联网金融门户
国际资讯基于互联网平台的金融业务

非洲掀起金融科技热潮

金融科技(FinTech)正逐渐成为非洲技术、风险投资领域的热门词汇。

2016年非洲金融科技相关投资快速增长,与前一年相比,非洲大陆获得投资的金融科技创业公司数量增长了84%。据统计,自2015年初以来,非洲金融科技创业公司已经获得了9300万美元投资(截至2017年6月)。

在本文中,我们将为大家简答介绍一下非洲金融科技发展的先决条件、关键领域及挑战。

前所未有的发展机遇

金融科技常常被贴上"颠覆性技术"的标签。但这种说法适用于传统银行体系制度化的发达国家,并不适用于非洲,因为大部分非洲金融行业都是从零开始。对大多数经济体来说,缺乏金融基础设施对开发商是个挑战。然而,正是这种金融体系的缺失,让金融科技新基础设施以惊人的速度发展。金融科技创业公司为新的金融服务和产品提供了可能性,并为那些无法获得金融服务的人提供了接触金融服务的机会。全球金融科技发展机遇显而易见,但在整个非洲、尤其是金融发达国家之外的区域,金融科技的影响范围更是非同寻常。

移动支付市场成长迅速

尤其是移动支付平台在非洲部分地区吸引了极大的关注。目前整个非洲有2.2亿注册手机账户,每三个月就有超过8000万的活跃用户。例如,总部位于拉各斯的支付公司Paystack在2016年的交易额为300万美元,但2017年仅一个月就达到了这一数字。移动钱包方面,最好的例子是肯尼亚的M-Pesa。据估计,肯尼亚有超过50%的成年人有M-Pesa账户,该系统的交易量相当于肯尼亚国内生产总值的50%。M-Pesa与Paypal关联,任何有信用卡的人都可以存款。

移动支付平台会促进新银行产品与服务的开发。例如,肯尼亚创业公司M-Kopa向客户提供家用电器贷款业务,日均还款条件非常低廉(每天0.5至1.5美元)。另一支付平台卢旺达的应用"Mergims"则允许国外用户为国内的家人购买商品和服务,无需邮寄商品。

地区平衡问题亟待解决

非洲金融技术业务的发展是不平衡的。大部分日常投资资金都进入了尼日利亚、肯尼亚和南非,这使得非洲其他地区的资金来源大大减少。南非与整个非洲大陆形成了鲜明的对比: FinScope 2016年金融包容性调查发现,在这份含有南非近5000名成年人样本的调查中,89%的受访者有某种类型的金融账户。非洲301家活跃金融科技创业公司中,南非占到了31.2%。尼日利亚和肯尼亚则分别位列第二和第三。目前的发展比例可能不平衡,但长期发展后可能会趋于一致。

 

Financial Technology, or ‘FinTech’, is increasingly becoming a buzzword in parts of Africa’s technology and venture capital circles. Investment is growing at a fast rate and, in 2016, it was measured that there was an 84% increase in the number of FinTech start-ups securing investment on the continent compared with the previous year. In total, since the beginning of 2015, FinTech start-ups have raised $93m in investment (up until June 2017). This article will look at the some key areas of growth in FinTech, its future opportunities and challenges.

FinTech is often labelled as a ‘disruptive technology’. While this applies to developed countries where formal banking systems are institutionalised, this label does not apply as well to Africa because, to a large extent, much of its finance industry is being built from scratch. For most economies, a lack of financial infrastructure is a challenge for developers. Yet it is precisely this absence of a financial system that has allowed the new infrastructure of FinTech to develop at a convincing speed.

In particular, mobile payment platforms are gaining the most traction in some parts of Africa. Taking Africa as a whole, there are now 220 million registered mobile money accounts of which, over 80 million are active every three months. For instance, Paystack, a payments company based in Lagos, processed $3m over 2016, but it managed that in one month alone in 2017. The most prominent example of mobile wallets is Kenya’s M-Pesa. It is estimated that over 50% of adults in Kenya own an M-Pesa account and the transaction volume on the system is equivalent to about 50% of Kenya’s GDP. M-Pesa is linked with Paypal and allows anyone with a credit card to deposit funds.

Mobile payment platforms can facilitate the development of new banking products and services. For instance, M-Kopa, a Kenyan start-up, provides household appliances on credit to customers and for very low daily repayment terms ($0.5 to $1.5 daily). Another payment platform is Mergims, a Rwandan app, and allows users abroad to buy goods and services for their family at home instead of transferring goods.

The growth of FinTech business across Africa is uneven. Much of the daily investment capital has been deployed into Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa, and left other parts of the continent much less funded. South Africa stands in stark contrast to the rest of the continent: the 2016 FinScope survey on financial inclusion found that in a representative sample of the nation of nearly 5,000 adults, 89% of respondents had some type of financial account. South Africa is also home to 31.2% of the continent’s 301 active FinTech start-ups. Nigeria and Kenya are second and third respectively. The rate of growth may currently be uneven, this is likely to level out in the longer-term.

The FinTech space in Africa as a whole presents an exciting opportunity for investors and entrepreneurs. The lack of conventional financial infrastructure in some parts of the continent is no impediment to FinTech’s development as it operates outside of traditional financial services structures. FinTech start-ups are offering possibilities for new financial services and products, and provides access to financial services to those who would not ordinarily have access. The opportunities for FinTech globally is clear, but across Africa and, in particular outside of the developing financial countries, its scope is extraordinary.


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