Growth and ambition for the Scottish fintech sector
By Stephen Ingledew, Chief Executive at FinTech Scotland.
A growing fintech ecosystem in Scotland
As we celebrated our first-year anniversary at the start of the year, we had a look back at what had been achieved in 2018 and our plan for the coming year. It’s always great to take some time to reflect when we’ve been so busy for the past 12 months at FinTech Scotland. We were pleased to announce that the number of fintech start-ups and SMEs based in Scotland had grown from 25 companies in January 2018 to over 100 today. This is a very encouraging growth which comes both from new start-ups and existing fintech firms moving to Scotland. Additionally, we saw many existing tech companies expand their proposition into financial services.
Connectivity and collaboration at the heart
Essentially, at FinTech Scotland, we spend a lot of our time fostering connections between entrepreneurs, large financial services firms, the universities, Government and public sector as well as a range of strategic stakeholders.We’re very lucky to work closely with public and private firms such as Scottish Enterprise, Lloyds, Avaloq, HSBC, The University of Edinburgh, Pinsent Masons, IBM, The Prudential, Deloitte, Equifax, Dentsu Aegis Network and Sopra Steria. Through their national and international networks, we can connect Scottish fintech firms with new markets and attract exciting innovative firms into Scotland.
Our ambition and plan
Right from the start we decided to show our ambition, stating that Scotland would be ranked in the top 5 of the Global Fintech Hub Federation ranking by 2020. If 2018 was very much about creating the fintech community and building an ecosystem around it, 2019 will be much more about positioning Scotland as a global fintech player which will contribute to the country’s economic and social ambitions.
This year we’ll be looking at helping fintech firms to scale through better access to funding, helping establish new route to market, creating meaningful connections with established firms, growing the community and helping universities, skill agencies and academies develop new talents. We’ll be working with VisitScotland to bring together the many fintech actors in Scotland to organise the Scottish Fintech Festival in September. After last year’s success (30+ events across 5 cities for 2 weeks) we want to generate even more momentum and encourage more events to take place in the 7 Scottish cities. Our ambition is also to bring a bigger international audience.
We’re looking forward to an exciting year for the fintech sector in Scotland and hoping to see many of you in September for the fintech festival.
With thanks to Stephen Ingledew and everyone at FinTech Scotland.