5 Key Announcements from Singapore Fintech Festival 2019 (Day 1 )by Fintechnews Singapore November 12, 2019
The 2019 Singapore Fintech Festival (SFF) kicked off on Monday at the Singapore EXPO, marking the first day of the world’s biggest annual fintech gathering.
Last year, the week-long event brought together a staggering 45,000 participants from 130 countries. This year, SFF gets even bigger as it merges with the Singapore Week of Innovation and TeCHnology (SWITCH) to introduce the inaugural SFF x SWITCH.
Featuring more than 400 speakers, over 900 exhibitors, 41 international pavilions, and about 60,000 participants from 130 countries, SFF x SWITCH 2019 offers the unique opportunity for companies, public agencies and regulators to announce their latest fintech initiatives. And already, several big moves have been unveiled.
The following are some of the most important announcements made during the first day of SFF x SWITCH.
MAS announces new milestone for Project Ubin
The Monetary of Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced that it has led the successful development of a blockchain-based prototype that enables payments to be carried out in different currencies on the same network.
The prototype network, developed by MAS in collaboration with JP Morgan and Temasek, aims to improve cost efficiencies for businesses and is currently undergoing industry testing to determine its ability to integrate with commercial blockchain applications.
The successful trial marks the latest development of Project Ubin, a collaborative project between MAS and industry partners that explores the use of Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT).
Project Ubin is now in its fifth phase.
Singapore to invest US$2 billion in green funds
Singapore will invest US$2 billion in funds that have a strong green focus, education minister Ong Ye Kung said.
He unveiled several new initiatives as part of MAS’s green action plan, which aims to place Singapore at the forefront of creating a greener financial system.
In addition to the US$2 billion Green Investments Programme, MAS will develop incentives to encourage growth in green and sustainability-linked loans, roll out grant schemes, and support the development of innovative green finance solutions, among other initiatives.
Green finance involves making sure financial services such as borrowing, lending and investing, deliver both returns and environmentally positive outcomes.
Winners of the 2019 Global Fintech Hackcelerator and Fintech Awards announced
Powered by KPMG Digital Village, the annual Global Fintech Hackcelerator calls on innovative startups from around the world each year to address some of the most complex and pressing challenges faced by the financial industry today.
This year, Pula Advisors, DiligenceVault and MindBridge Analytics were named as the three winners of the competition.
Besides the Global Fintech Hackcelerator, the Fintech Awards too have named its selection of this year’s 12 winners. Each year, the Fintech Awards recognizes innovative fintech solutions implemented by startups, financial institutions and technology companies across four main categories: Singapore Founder, ASEAN SME, ASEAN Open and Global.
In the Singapore Founder category, Onchain Custodian took the first prize, followed by Finaxar (2nd) and Optimai (3rd). In the ASEAN SME category, the winners are InfoCorps Technologies (1st), Brankas (2nd) and Zigway (3rd). In the ASEAN Open category, CredoLab was crowned the grand winner, followed by MyCash Online (2nd) and Razer Pay (3rd). Finally, in the Global category, TransferWise won the first price followed by OakNorth (2nd) and VoxSmart (3rd).
Mastercard launches Fintech Express program
Payments network Mastercard has launched the Fintech Express program in Asia Pacific (APAC).
Through Fintech Express, selected fintechs gain access to a suite of digital-first products, flexible commercial agreements and global licensing, to support for them in scaling globally.
London-based fintech-as-a-service startup Rapyd is the first partner to join the program.
UOB introduces AI-based digital banking services
United Overseas Bank (UOB) has launched Mighty Insights, an artificial intelligence (AI)-based digital banking service to help customers better manage their finances.
With this digital service, UOB is able to anticipate and provide insights to customers, enabling them to easily track their savings and expenses. The solution also allows the bank to target customers with more relevant financial products and services.
Singlife Launches Insurance Savings Plan with Visa Card to Spend
Digital insurer Singlife announced that they have launched their mobile-first insurance savings plan, the Singlife Account.
Every Singlife Account comes with an optional Visa debit card that gives customers instant access to their account and allows them to make overseas transactions without incurring FX charges.