now loading...
Wealth Asia Connect Middle East Treasury & Capital Markets Europe ESG Forum TechTalk
ESG Investing / TechTalk
Singapore tops Asia-Pacific 2023 fintech funding
Amid global decline, H2 surge in AI investment, with ESG focus predicted to grow
Tom King 7 Feb 2024

Despite a widespread slowdown in the fintech sector, Singapore bucked the trend in 2023 witnessing a surge in artificial intelligence (AI) fintech funding, with environmental, social and governance (ESG) fintech solutions, and the payment and insurtech sectors, also showing resilence, according to a recent report.

The second half of 2023, finds the KPMG Pulse of Fintech H2 2023 report, witnessed several significant fintech deals in the city-state, among them, a venture capital deal with digital bank AnextBank that topped the list after raising US$359 million, and insurtech firm Bolttech securing US$246 million in funding.

These deals and others helped make Singapore the fintech funding leader in the Asia-Pacific region, accounting for a robust 21% of all fintech deals.

Singapore AI fintech funding also soared to US$333.13 million in the second half of last year from US$148.08 million in the first, marking an impressive 77% rise.

This surge culminated in US$481.21 million being invested across 24 deals throughout the year, signalling a vibrant ecosystem in contrast to global trends.

Globally, however, fintech investments in the AI sub-sector, the KMPG report finds, experienced a sharp slowdown, falling from US$28.1 billion in 2022 to US$12.1 billion in 2023.

ESG focus

The ESG space attracted several very sizeable deals over the course of 2023, the report notes, with the US attracting the vast majority of ESG-focused fintech investment – likely driven by investment trends across the broader fintech sector, rather than by any substantial decline in Asia-Pacific.

ESG-focused fintech investment in Asia-Pacific lagged somewhat last year, with Japan-based Gojo & Company’s raising of US$110.6 million standing out as one the largest deals.

ESG and global, regional and national climate-change commitments, the report suggests, will continue to support both the emergence of new fintech’s focused on a broad range of ESG-related opportunities. These include lending for alternative energy and climate-change projects, carbon tracking and accounting, supply-chain tracking, and property and energy management.

Given climate-change commitments, investment in green fintech, the report stresses, will likely also be an area for long-term investment.

“We’re going to see a lot more focus on the implementation of ESG-related regulations and accounting standards, and it’s going to act as a real tailwind for the entire sector,” says Aymeric Salley, director of financial services advisory at KPMG Singapore. “I feel quite confident predicting that over the next year ESG-focused fintech will grow faster as a sub-segment compared with the broader fintech sector because of this regulatory tailwind that, quite likely, could continue over the next few decades.”

Hichem Bouqniss
Hichem Bouqniss
International Islamic Liquidity Management Corporation
5th Global Islamic Finance Issuers and Investors Leadership Dialogue
Opportunities beyond uncertainty
View Highlights
Yu-En Ong
Yu-En Ong
head of Southeast Asia
Norton Rose Fulbright
In-person roundtable
Beyond Covid: Emerging trends in a changing lending landscape
View Highlights