Chinese firms continue to dominate KPMG global leading fintechs list

02 November 2018 3 min. read

KPMG has revealed its 2018 list of the world’s leading fintech pioneers, with Chinese companies continuing to dominate – taking three of the top five spots.

Now into its fifth year, the annual Fintech100 list compiled by global Big Four professional services firm KPMG together with fintech capital investors H2 Ventures celebrates the world’s leading innovators in the fintech domain; those companies ‘creating products and services at the juncture of technology and financial services who are seeking to disrupt the existing processes and products that dominate the marketplace.'

Continuing the trend from previous years, fintech firms from China have once again dominated the pointy end of the list, claiming three of the top five places, with the world’s largest third-party payments platform Ant Financial backing up on last year’s crown. Altogether, China achieved 11 entries across the list – which is divided into established and emerging players – with 30 Asian firms appearing in total.

While Ant Financial retained its number one ranking from last year’s Chinese trifecta, its fellow 2017 top three place-getters ZhongAn and Qudian have been displaced by new top-four Chinese entries JD Finance (9th last year) and Du Xiaoman Financial (which didn’t feature last year) with the two firm’s split by Singapore’s Grab in third. Lufax from China, sixth on last year’s list, also held on to a top-ten placing, while six Chinese companies altogether were among the top dozen.Chinese firms continue to dominate KPMG global leading fintechs list

Charting a path of rapid growth, the three top featured Chinese fintech companies have all been spun out of Chinese retail and internet giants including Alibaba (Ant Financial), (JD Finance), and Baidu (Du Xiaoman Financial), with the top-end ‘tech-fin’ players – financial services offerings from the tech behemoths – continuing to gather steam in an ominous warning to traditional financial services providers.

Of note over the past year has been the sky-rocketing investment into fintech firms, with the top four featured companies each pulling in over $1 billion in capital over the past twelve months alone, and more than $20 billion over the period combined. Overall, the top 50 firms attracted an aggregated $26 billion during the past year – up 366 percent on the previous twelve months – while 26 of the listed companies drew over $100 million each.

As a segment breakdown, the payments field was the primary focus area for a third of the featured firms (34), followed by 22 operating in the lending domain and 14 and 12 in wealth management and insurance respectively. The top of the list however was dominated by fintechs such as Ant Financial which have developed a broad range of financial service offerings. As noted by the report, the Chinese incumbents have been scaling with a heavy emphasis on payments and insurance.

Asian fintechs

With cities and countries across the globe battling it out to become the world’s premiere fintech hubs, the growing predominance of Asia Pacific firms on KPMG’s Fintech100 list is striking. Altogether, 38 of the established and emerging companies on this year’s list are based in the APAC region – up from 31 last year and 22 on the inaugural list from 2014. Firms from Singapore (6), Korea, Japan (2), Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand and Myanmar all made this year’s list.

Global Co-Lead of KPMG Fintech, Ian Pollari, said: “The 2018 Fintech100 showcases the increasing diversity and scale of the global fintech market. Payments and lending continue to be the dominant sectors, however wealth management is taking off, with 14 companies on the list and insurtech remains strong with 12 companies. Notable this year is the emergence of neo-banks, with ten on the list – which is the beginning of what we believe will be accelerated growth of digital banking models globally.”