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CCAF, World Bank and World Economic Forum call on fintechs to uncover Covid-19 impact

CCAF, World Bank and World Economic Forum call on fintechs to uncover Covid-19 impact

The Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF), World Bank and World Economic Forum are calling on fintechs to participate in data collection for the group’s Global Covid-19 FinTech Market Impact & Industry Resilience Study before its October deadline.

In its second year, the study aims to provide greater insights into the short to medium term impact of the global pandemic on fintechs, how they have performed in the face of global and local market conditions, what steps they have taken to respond to customer requirements and how the regulatory response to Covid-19 has affected their development and growth.

Tania Ziegler, head of global benchmarking at the CCAF explains that an initial dive into the data has highlighted some key areas of focus by firms in response to the continued impact of the global pandemic - most notably around fraud prevention, cyber security and the easing of onboarding.

“We are also seeing some interesting developments in the relationship between qualification and onboarding, which we are keen to analyse further over the next few weeks,” Ziegler explains.

“Another trend we will be investigating further is that many initiatives introduced as a response to Covid-19 appear to have been adopted permanently. The team is particularly excited to move from the data collection to the data analysis phase of the study - particularly examining what firms have reported as being required from a regulatory perspective.”

This first interim look at data has indicated that the top regulatory support mechanisms being utilised by fintech firms were standardisation across cyber-security and fraud prevention, support for remote onboarding, and simplified customer due diligence.

“We are seeing some really positive results emerging from the data collected so far, but some of the challenges identified by firms in our Covid-19 Rapid Assessment Study carried out last year remain,” comments Ziegler. “Clearly, the more responses we get to our survey, the more representative it is of the entire industry, but it also enables us to provide a granular analysis on a regional level. We would therefore encourage any firms that have not yet completed the survey to do so as we enter the final stretch of data collection.”

Speaking on the study earlier this year, Drew Propson, head of technology and innovation in financial services at the World Economic Forum stated: “The global reach of this new survey and our previous study will make the collective data particularly valuable. As we examine the longer-term impact of the pandemic on fintech firms, breaking the results down to the country level will allow for analyses across geographies, and will better enable cross-regional knowledge exchange and collaboration.”

The CCAF is working in partnership with leading industry players including Finextra, LendIt, Innovate Finance, GSMA, and Crowdfund Insider as Global Survey Research Partners to spread the report’s findings globally.

The CCAF at the University of Cambridge Judge Business School is encouraging fintechs to take just 20-30 minutes to complete its survey before the 1 October 2021 closing deadline. The survey can be found here.

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