Adding fuel to fire, the UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT) has launched a brand new fintech investment drive to attract capital into the country’s booming fintech sector – moments before revealing that it has already attracted 1.8 billion GBP and generated 7 billion GBP in revenue over the course of last year. This seems to be in part due to the meteoric rise of digital payments – with UK Finance recently announcing that debit card payments (13.2 billion GBP) have finally overtaken cash (13.1 billion) in the country.
In a press release, International Trade Secretary Dr Liam Fox emphasized that the DIT will prioritise fintech investment by establishing a UK FinTech steering board and connect companies with global investors. The new drive hopes to continue the impressive momentum of recent years,with investments last year gaining a 153%, year-on-year increase; 54% of which originates from foreign venture capitalists. Contactless payments on the other hand experienced a 97% increase, with the city of London going as far as rolling out mPOS card readers to street performers.
The decreasing popularity of cash, increased market speculation, and the lack of Brexit related ‘action’ on the UK government have led to the country maintaining its position as the prime fintech hub in Europe overt he past few years. Although word remains that neighbouring cities such as Paris and Berlin could eventually usurp London’s throne as Europe’s fintech capital due to staffing concerns once Brexit becomes reality, concentrated investment opportunities and conducive regulatory system might see the country weathering these uncertainties for a few more years.