Brexit won’t stop UK being top FinTech hub

Latest research from PwC and a FinTech accelerator states the UK will retain its place as a global FinTech hub despite Brexit.
By Paul Walsh
The UK will remain a global FinTech hub despite its decision to leave the European Union, latest research has suggested.

A report from PwC and FinTech accelerator Startupbootcamp revealed applications from UK based FinTech start-up companies to Startupbootcamp stood at 34% at the end of 2016, up from 22% the year before.

The report also suggested that “bridges are being built” between London and other parts of the FinTech eco-system including China, South Korea, Singapore, India and Australia, which will help the UK post-Brexit.

PwC had previously warned of the potential implications of Brexit for the FinTech market including whether the UK would remain an attractive destination for FinTech entrepreneurs, as well as issues over start-up access to capital and the single market.

The report indicates that in spite of such possibilities, concerns around Brexit have been “minimal and hypothetical” particularly as most early stage start-ups are predominantly focused on the domestic markets.

Other industry participants had also predicted issues for the UK FinTech space as a result of the EU referendum.

Speaking at the London FinTech week last July, industry strategist Devie Mohan spoke of how the UK would not be accountable under harmonised EU rules on data and that UK FinTech firms may suffer as a result.

“The FinTech industry is not immune to broader political and economic uncertainty but the UK remains very well placed to lead the way,” said Steve Davies, EMEA FinTech leader at PwC.

“As the UK’s position in Europe post Brexit becomes clearer, start-ups from across the world will continue to travel here to work with international investors, partner with leading financial firms and develop under a forward thinking regulator.”

The paper went on to suggest perceptions of FinTech are shifting from being seen as a threat to financial services to being viewed as a collaborator with existing systems.