Irish Fintech Leaders Secure Strategic Partnerships During Hong Kong Fintech Week

Deals Highlight Ireland’s Global Reputation As A Fintech Hub. Enterprise Ireland Is The World’s Second-Biggest Fintech Investor And The Third Largest Venture Capitalist In Europe By Deal Count

Hong Kong, 1st November 2018 – Hong Kong FinTech Week provided the backdrop for three leading global Irish fintech companies to forge strategic partnerships with companies in Hong Kong and mainland China. The deals highlight the strength of Ireland being a source of fintech innovation internationally. As a global hub for finance, technology, and investor activity, Ireland has rapidly emerged as a hotbed of fintech innovation.

The deals see three Irish firms Global Shares, Know Your Customer and CurrencyFair forging partnerships which will accelerate their growth in APAC, particularly mainland China and Hong Kong. The three companies are backed by Enterprise Ireland, the second largest fintech investor in the world by deal count.

Deals announced include:

  • Global Shares’ signs USD 15M deal with Huanying International and announce new Beijing office opening

  • Know Your Customer contracting with Neat Limited

  • Also, Currency Fair today formalized their strategic partnership with Hong Kong based, Convoy Payments.

Global Shares, Deloitte ‘FinTech Company of the Year’ and leading provider of equity compensation management solutions for global corporations, today announced that it will form a strategic partnership with Huanying International, one of the top online brokerage firms in Hong Kong and mainland China, to provide ESOP administration, share dealing, global compliance, financial reporting, and asset management services to new economy companies. The deal will be worth more than USD 15M in revenue over the next five years. Global Shares today also announced further expansion in Asia with the opening of a new office in Beijing, following the official launch of Global Shares’ Hong Kong Office earlier this year.

Smart technology client verification solution provider Know Your Customer has finalized a deal with Hong Kong-based fintech company Neat Limited.  Neat’s integration of Know Your Customer’s onboarding solution through APIs, allows them to process hundreds of applications a day. The KYC solution allows them to carry out all necessary AML and KYC checks much faster and much more cost-effectively while delivering an extremely smooth customer experience.

Moreover, earlier, CurrencyFair, a leading provider of International Money Transfer services to consumers and businesses worldwide announced a major expansion into Asia through the signing of a strategic partnership with Hong Kong-based Convoy Payments Limited. The partnership is part of a €20 million (approximately HK$182 million) investment plan to drive rapid global growth which will also see the creation of 90 new jobs over the next 18 months. The new jobs will be created globally with particular emphasis on product development, customer service, compliance and marketing, and global partnership development.

In total, 14 Irish fintech companies backed by Enterprise Ireland, the Irish Government’s trade and innovation agency and the third largest VC in the world by deal count, are showcasing Ireland’s fintech capabilities at Hong Kong Fintech Week this week. Showcasing under the #IrishAdvantage brand, the Irish companies represent fintech areas including Regtech, Payments, Banking, InsurTech, Cloud Communications, and Biometrics.

Irish Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys commented on the breadth of the deals, “Enterprise Ireland client companies are securing new contracts in global markets at an unprecedented level. The deals we’ve seen formalized today by Global Shares, Know Your Customer and CurrencyFair at Hong Kong Fintech Week demonstrate how much value Irish fintech companies can deliver to partners worldwide. It’s heartening to see recognition from companies the world over for the Irish fintech advantage.”

Commenting on the new partnerships, Enterprise Ireland CEO Julie Sinnamon noted that “The acceleration of fintech in Asia provides excellent opportunities for Irish companies to grow through strategic partnerships like the ones we’ve seen formalized here at Hong Kong FinTech week. These deals represent just some of the ways Irish FinTech can help accelerate growth, beyond revenue. We are seeing services being enhanced, jobs created and growth in combined portfolios. Today’s announcements highlight Ireland’s reputation as a significant source of fintech innovation and demonstrate the role Irish fintech companies can play in delivering solutions for our partners in the Asia Pacific.” 

Commenting on the expansion of Irish fintech companies in Hong Kong, Mo Harvey, Enterprise Ireland’s FinTech & Financial Services Lead, APAC said, “As Asia’s largest financial hub, Hong Kong is one of the most forward-looking cities in Asia when it comes to fintech deployment. Historically, Irish fintech companies have performed exceptionally well in Hong Kong. A strong cohort of over twenty Irish fintech companies are active in Hong Kong including key players such as FEXCO, Daon, Know Your Customer, CurrencyFair, Intuition Publishing, Fenergo, Fineos, Tax Back International, Corvil, Global Shares, and Financial Risk Solutions. Between them, these companies have secured significant wins with some of the world’s leading financial services companies in Hong Kong such as HSBC, Standard Chartered and Bank of China as well as local Hong Kong entities such as the Securities & Futures Commission and the Hong Kong Jockey Club.”

“We see real opportunity in the areas of regtech, payments, blockchain, and big data and expect there to be a significant increase in the number of Irish companies entering the Hong Kong market in the next 6 to 12 months.  There will be a particular focus on Regtech, cloud and banking companies to Hong Kong’s new virtual bank initiative which will create opportunities for collaboration and disruption. These companies have one thing in common – their choice of Hong Kong as their operational base to take on both the local market and expand into other Asia Pacific markets including mainland China,” added Mo Harvey.

Ireland’s representation at Hong Kong Fintech Week forms part of Enterprise Ireland’s trade mission to China, which will see the Irish trade delegation also participate in the China International Import Expo happening in Shanghai from 5-10 November 2018.

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