Australia has recently seen an increase in fintech-related activity, as the government forms fintech agreements with other countries around the world and launches initiatives designed to boost the industry. At the same time, banks are increasingly releasing innovative new products, and funding for fintech startups continues to gather pace. At present, the country remains a relatively nascent hub for fintech, but with its current rate of development, it has the potential to establish itself as Asia-Pacific’s (APAC) leading fintech hub, a role that Singapore has played so far. The Australian fintech scene is currently driven mostly by its 512 domestic firms, with just 67 foreign startups in the country. However, it seems likely that, with time and continued government support, this will change and more foreign fintechs will decide to establish their APAC headquarters in Australia. That will be aided by the country's proximity to China, the use of English as its official language, and its Western laws and customs.
There are two Australian cities in particular that have built reputations domestically as fintech hubs.
Sydney. In addition to being Australia's financial center, Sydney has established itself as the country's top fintech hub, with 60% of Australia’s fintech companies located there. That's likely because Sydney has the largest population in the country, and therefore offers the greatest potential market for fintechs. It also makes the city the most likely candidate to help push Australia into a position where it can challenge Singapore as APAC’s leading fintech hub. Australia, largely due to Sydney's fintech activity, is already seen as stronger than Hong Kong, another major player in the fintech space. Additionally, Sydney has a plethora of accelerators and incubators, including Springboard, an accelerator that connects Australia’s [...]