As published on finextra.com, Friday November 8, 2019.
FT Slingshot, a new programme for Indian FinTechs, has launched at Hong Kong FinTech Week.
It is the first ever cross-border B2B FinTech programme focused on helping Indian firms scale and launch internationally, and will feature demo days in in Mumbai, Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Singapore.
FT Slingshot aims to showcase Indian firms’ strengths in B2B financial services and bridge their access to international markets, particularly Greater China and South East Asia. It is being led by FinStep Asia in partnership with MEDICI and WHub, with senior-level mentors from across Asia’s financial services and FinTech industries, and with involvement from major banks and insurance firms.
India’s FinTech industry is the third largest in the world, with deep expertise in B2B financial services technology in particular. According to MEDICI research, the country represents a frontier market for global FinTech and is one of the most attractive destinations for foreign and domestic investors. 96% of Indian start-up founders are targeting global markets, with FinTech the most popular segment for serial entrepreneurs.
Firms participating in FT Slingshot will get the chance to work with top regional and international banks and insurers to refine their products and scale internationally. They will be drawn from a wide variety of FinTech segments, including RegTech, Digital Banking, WealthTech, InsurTech and Trade Finance. The programme will also help the most promising of these early and growth stage firms access investment led by Sea Fund and other notable investors from India and Hong Kong.
Charles Ng, Associate Director General of Invest Hong Kong, said, “Invest Hong Kong is delighted to support FT Slingshot. Hong Kong is an important part of the fast-developing Greater Bay area which, with a population of 70 million and an economy of USD 1.6 trillion, is bringing about exciting business opportunities. The city is therefore the perfect hub for connecting Indian businesses with Japan, Korea, Greater China and ASEAN. FT Slingshot will be at the heart of the action, bringing Indian start-ups and scale-ups to the wider FinTech community for the mutual benefit of the industry.”
Musheer Ahmed, Managing Director of FinStep Asia and Leader of FT Slingshot, said, “FT Slingshot will showcase the best Indian FinTech companies with global ambitions, giving them access to the mentors and opportunities they need to achieve international expansion. The programme will bring together the world’s most dynamic FinTech communities and help accelerate the evolution of the financial services industry.”
Karena Belin, Co-Founder and CEO of WHub and AngelHub, said, “Our mission at WHub is to unleash startups’ full potential by connecting them to the resources they need, and with FT Slingshot we’ll be helping take the Indian FinTech industry global. Hong Kong’s FinTech scene is thriving, having given birth to four FinTech unicorns already, representing nearly 10% of global FinTech unicorns, and represents a great springboard to helping FinTech start-ups scale in the East.”
Amit Goel, Co-Founder of MEDICI, said, “Two interesting trends have inspired us to co-create this platform. Firstly, Indian FinTechs have evolved at such a rapid pace due to modern financial infrastructure and FinTech adoption that they are exporting products and tech now to Banks and financial institutions globally. Secondly, B2B success stories like Freshworks and Zoho from India have led new B2B tech founders to think about global markets from day one. Therefore Indian B2B FinTech companies need more opportunities to take their products to Hong Kong, the Greater Bay Area and South East Asia to help drive FinTech forward.”