When expanding your fintech company abroad, foreign executives should consider the developing ecosystem for fintech in Argentina.
Financial technology, better known as fintech, competes with traditional financial methods by using technology and innovation to change the way financial services are delivered.
Swelling middle classes are demanding more from producers and exporters. Buying and using phones to engage with the commercial landscape. As a result, technological innovation is sweeping through previously neglected industries in Latin America. In particular, fintech is developing rapidly to keep up with a momentous shift in the region towards online financial interaction.
Fintech startup activity in Argentina rises as the country adopts new financial services innovations. Argentina has over 110 new fintech startups that position the country as a hub for financial technology creativity. This results in valuable opportunities for entrepreneurship in this fast-growing sector.
Learn how this vibrant startup culture in Argentina generates opportunities in the fintech market for your business.
Fintech in Argentina: breakdown of the sector
The characteristics of the digitization process of financial service digitization are mainly:
- that financial services can best contain simplified and accessed for users via the internet,
- an increase in the processing speed of automated procedures,
- cost reduction,
- a stronger focus on customer service,
- greater convenience and
- higher transparency.
The four main segments of fintech in Argentina in terms of the highest amount of startups are the following:
- Payments and remittances (28% of total startup activity)
- Lending (18%)
- Enterprise financial management (16%)
- Enterprise technologies for financial institutions (12%)
The remaining 6 segments are emerging segments in Argentina. These account for 7% or less of the total market:
- Wealth management
- Scoring, identity and fraud
- Trading and markets
- Personal financial management.
The segment that incorporates the most financial activity in Argentina’s fintech scene currently is digital payments. The segment has a total transaction value of around US$18,680 million.
The target market for fintech in Argentina
Fintech companies in Argentina are successfully targeting the country’s ‘unbanked’ and ‘underbanked’ populations. Currently, approximately 50% of the adult population in Argentina lacks access to official bank accounts.
Argentina’s fintech startups are leveraging new technologies and innovation to improve access to financial services.
According to a survey conducted by Finnovista, among the startups in Argentina, 41% claim to have a product or service focused on unbanked or underbanked consumers and/or small to medium enterprises (SMEs).
A Unicorn startup is a tech startup company that reaches a $1 billion dollar market value as determined by private or public investment. With a global mindset among its entrepreneurs, Argentina became home for fast-growing tech start-ups. Prisma Medios de Pago is one of six unicorns in Argentina. Prisma facilitates online transactions, transfers, points of sale, online shopping, billing, as well as money management. Prisma started in 2014 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. It became a unicorn in 2019 after Advent’s capital infusion of US$700 million.
The economic crisis as an opportunity
Argentina has dealt with a number of economic struggles in its recent history. The economic crisis in 2001 led to the “corralito,” where the government almost completely froze bank accounts and forbade withdrawals from US dollar-denominated accounts. This created a reliance on cash transactions, as well as a lack of financial education throughout the country. Nowadays, this problem is still an opportunity for investors in fintech since the mistrust in the banks still lives among the people.
The opportunity lies in that with a large population dealing in cash (remembering that 50% of the population is unbanked or underbanked), innovative fintech solutions can persuade those under-utilizing banking services to bring their transactions online. Companies are designing platforms that are easy to understand and access, providing value to this proportion of Argentina’s population.
On the 22nd of May 2019, the National Congress of Argentina approved Law 27.506 of the Promotion of the Knowledge Economy, also referred to as the Law of Software. Promoting economic activities to stimulate the knowledge and digitalization of information supported in scientific and technological advances and the acquirement of goods, rendering of services and/or best practices.
Shape the future of fintech startup activity in Argentina with Biz Latin Hub
With increasing internet access and a developing fintech scene, businesses seeking to innovate have clear advantages to work in fintech in Argentina.
Before entering a this market, it’s important to be aware of Argentina’s regulations regarding company incorporation and corporate compliance. It is strongly recommended that foreign executives engage with experienced legal and accounting specialists in Argentina to assure their successful setup and compliance in the country.
At Biz Latin Hub, we’re a market leader for supporting businesses from over the world start their fintech and other ventures in Argentina. Our team of qualified professionals in Argentina provides a suite of multilingual market entry and back-office services to get your business off the ground. Contact us here for more information, and become part of the fintech scene in Argentina.
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