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Why you should NOT do a fintech startup?

"Estimated counts from different regional and global lists puts the existing number of fintech startups at anywhere between 5,000 to 6,000 companies, all vying for market share in different sub sectors, ranging from mobile payments, data analytics and virtual banking to online lending, bitcoin applications and crowd funding" I read in a recent Forbes article

Wow! So many ideas, innovations and entrepreneurs definitely indicates that the fintech community is an exciting space to be a part of. A lot of people are venturing into the fintech space, trying to provide the next BIG game-changer or world changing solution as they think / believe. In fact, all that I have been observing and reading about this space inspired a post here on the community on Why it is the best time for fintech startups, and possibly rightly so?

While a lot of literature is there on why fintech startups are booming, I also see many times new fintech ventures for all the wrong reasons. They don't last too long, and probably should not have existed in the first place.

In this post I am sharing reasons on why you should NOT do a fintech startup?

1) Because everyone is doing it ; As silly as it sounds, many times many of us fall pray to the "herd mentality". So we do things because everyone around us is doing it. Not a good choice in the long run - especially for fintech startups

2) Because you think that's where the big money is ; yes the big money might come provided you stick around long enough. Fintech is a highly competitive and fast evolving space. It might take 3 years to 10 years to create something which can change the world - So do you have it in you to go the long haul?

3) Because you believe that it is an exciting space ; yes but excitment is usually only short lived! It is different to work in an exciting space and to startup in an exciting space. Acknowledge and accept this.

5) Because you love technology, and think that the fintech space is on the cusp of technology disruption and transformation. For running a successful business, you need more than technology. You need a team, skills, money, passion, persistence, ideas, execution and a lot lot lot more ingredients to make the magic sauce

6) Because you have the money to go the startup route ; Good for you - you might consider investing in startups or other investments in line with your risk appetite. Doing startups might not be the best option unless you are wired for it


Do a fintech startup if you can solve a customer problem, create a new experience paradigm, make something simpler and easier or solve a unmet need... That has the potential to be a game changer or rain maker...

What do you think? Why should anyone do a fintech startup? Why not? Leave a comment to let me know..



Comments: (3)

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 12 January, 2016, 13:091 like 1 like

Great advice. Every now and then, a wannabe entrepreneur approaches us with an idea for an aggregation-based startup. Very often, it turns out they're solving their own problem rather than their customer's problem. So far, we've been politely telling them not to waste their time. Going forward, I'll simply refer them to this post! I'm guessing that, out of the 5K-6K fintech startups, fewer than 10-20 will survive your four filter criteria of a potentially successful fintech startup.

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 13 January, 2016, 07:20Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Excellent article, Nischala ! As a corollary, to paraphrase you, one SHOULD startup in fintech, if :

1) S/he is able to solve a customer problem/s

2) S/he is able to create a new experience paradigm

3) S/he is able to make something easier, simpler or faster

4) S/he succeeds in meeting an inherent or incipient need.

Else, you run the risk of being lost in the crowd !!!


A Finextra member
A Finextra member 14 January, 2016, 12:29Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

+Star Kim: I do not mean to be rude, but is your post relevant to the topic please ?

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