Global investment in fintech fell significantly in 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic hit but picked up significantly in the second half of the year, according to KPMG, which expects a strong 2021 for the sector.
In its latest Pulse of Fintech report, KPMG says global investment across M&A, PE and VC was $105 billion across 2861 deals in 2020, down on the $165 billion recorded in 2019.
With the exception of M&A - which saw deal value drop over 50% - the overall fintech market proved resilient despite uncertainties such as the Covid-19 pandemic and the US presidential election.
There was a coronavirus-driven drop off in the first half of the year but fintech investment bounced back in the second half - more than doubling from $33.4 billion to $71.9 billion.
Both the Americas ($23 billion) and Emea ($9.2 billion) regions saw record highs of annual fintech-focused VC investment. US-based wealthtech Robinhood raised the most VC funding in H2 - $1.3 billion across two rounds. Several digital banks also had big rounds - Klarna ($650 million), Revolut ($580 million), and Chime ($533 million).
The US accounted for over 70% of global fintech funding, with $76 billion in investment. In contrast, Asia-Pacific dropped from $16.8 billion in 2019 to $11.6 billion in 2020 - a six-year low.
As for the future, KPMG says that the increase in demand for digital payments, contactless payments and e-commerce platforms means that fintech investment is expected to remain robust well into 2021.
Anton Ruddenklau, global fintech co-leader, KPMG, says: "Covid-19 has been a catalyst for many fintech business models - a real proving ground given the accelerated demand for digital offerings coming from consumers and businesses alike.
"Payments and e-commerce platforms were particularly hot areas of investment, in addition to cybersecurity, given the increasing use of digital platforms."