Finance as the world knows it has been experiencing a radical paradigm shift for some time now, with financial technology adoption rates soaring through the roof due to the ongoing implications of the COVID-19 pandemic. The uncertainty factor imposed on the world of finance today is reflecting more than ever on the shiny benefits of FinTech as an alternative to conventional banks and traditional legacy systems, which are part of an ancient industry that will inevitably evolve into – or at least converge with – technology-based financial services on a global scale.
The innovative aspect of FinTech that promises to revolutionize the way things are done in finance by providing increased access to financial tools to the underbanked and underprivileged is a key metric of the rising sector’s success. For example, people located in rural areas that do not qualify for engaging with the traditional banking industry will now gain access to a multitude of easy, fast, and secure financial services on any connected device. This doesn’t just include managing their accounts and making transactions; FinTech unlocks access to many more areas of finance for the underbanked, such as insurance, investment plans, and additional lifestyle-enhancing options that were previously inaccessible to them. Another key success factor of FinTech is that people have remote access to all these benefits without any physical or relocating requirements; a crucial point in the post-pandemic age.
On the business side, governments and public entities are creating the adequate FinTech ecosystem needed for budding startups and entrepreneurs to test the viability of their solutions pre-market, such as incubator and accelerator programs that provide a live regulatory sandbox environment to evaluate the performance of their products or services. This builds overall confidence and provides a robust framework for FinTech companies to know exactly what they’re getting into and what areas need further development without having to worry about real-world feedback, until they are ready to launch their ideas into the world.
However, FinTech also has its challenges that need to be overcome for it to fully thrive in the world today. Although some traditional financial institutions have realized FinTech’s full potential and are accommodating it in their current strategies, some FIs are still somewhat reluctant to accept these disruptive changes and have met them with rooted resistance. This is understandable from their point of view, as change is not always easy, especially for institutions that have a solid reputation and track record of excellence in the industry, but the inevitable is already obvious at this point; FinTech is here to stay, and people are liking it more and more.
This notion is better embraced sooner than later, and FIs that have realized the inevitability of FinTech early on are much better poised to cope with the technological changes in the finance world than their late counterparts.FIs that haven’t yet started to accommodate FinTech into their offering need to embrace the change and analyze how they can incorporate it into their products & services, because innovation in finance will benefit every financial institution involved and elevate them to new heights when it comes to acquiring new customers and retaining existing ones.
With a vibrant investment community looking to contribute to and grow FinTech startups and companies, the future of the industry is bright. The world is adopting FinTech at a rapid rate, and countries that nurture entrepreneurs that are riding this new wave of digital finance will see themselves ready for the next big thing. It’s high time that traditional FIs realize FinTech’s full potential in the present, but perhaps more importantly in the near future, which promises to deliver more financial innovation, customization and convenience in the hands of consumers than the world has previously seen.
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