Money20/20 Asia 2024: Event Recap and Main Announcements

Money20/20 Asia 2024: Event Recap and Main Announcements

by April 29, 2024

Money20/20 Asia made its debut in Bangkok on April 23, 2024, bringing together key players from across Asia’s financial landscape, including banks, payment providers, startups, retailers, fintech companies, and regulators.

Over three bustling days of non-stop activities and content sessions, thousands of attendees forged connections, made deals, and drew inspiration from world-class speakers. Through keynote addresses, panel discussions and fireside chats, industry experts addressed some of the biggest opportunities and most pressing issues faced by the sector today.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the highlights from the event.

Cutting-edge technology, inclusive finance among the main topics

Money20/20 Asia 2024 spanned three days of insightful sessions, discussions, and keynote addresses focusing on various aspects of fintech and finance.

Day 1 of Money20/20 Asia 2024 showcased a series of insightful sessions and discussions. The morning commenced with a keynote address by Daranee Saeju, Assistant Governor of Payment Systems Policy and Financial Consumer Protection Group at the Bank of Thailand (BOT), who highlighted the bank’s innovative strides in digital finance, including cross-border central bank digital currencies (CBDC) payments and real-time payment use cases between Thailand and Singapore.

Day 2 featured discussions on small business empowerment, consumer financial resilience, and lending strategies in Thailand. Other sessions also delved into key trends and issues shaping the global payment landscape, including open banking in Europe, the QR code revolution in Asia as well as the US’s card dominance.

Day 3 explored topics like Web3 developments, Malaysia’s fintech journey, and fostering financial inclusion in Asia. A session presented by Dr. Wong Huei Ching from the Securities Commission Malaysia delved into the fintech journey of Malaysia in the capital markets and outlined the agency’s commitment to fostering innovation while prioritizing investor protection.

Another session featuring Manu Rajan of Wing Cambodia explored groundbreaking financial inclusion  initiatives in Asia, providing an overview of the strategies, partnerships and innovations making financial services accessible and empowering communities.

Australian and Thai fintech trade groups sign partnership

At Money20/20 Asia 2024, Fintech Australia and the Thai Fintech Association formalized their partnership through a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to boost the fintech capabilities of both nations.

The event was attended by fintech leaders from Australia and Southeast Asia, alongside VCs and financial services representatives.

This collaboration aligns with Australia’s broader economic strategy in Southeast Asia, highlighted last year by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in “Invested: Australia’s Southeast Asia Economic Strategy to 2040”, which pinpoints the digital economy as a crucial area for enhancing bilateral trade and investment with Thailand.

At the event, the Thai Fintech Association also announced a MoU with HSBC to help further engage the next generation of Thai tech startups.

Kasikornbank, JP Morgan team up to improve cross-border payments

Thailand’s Kasikornbank, in partnership with JP Morgan, introduced Project Carina, a new initiative aimed at accelerating cross-border payments, increasing transparency and cutting costs by leveraging blockchain technology.

The project integrates Kasikornbank’s Quarix blockchain with JP Morgan’s Onyx platform to enhance the efficiency of international transactions. It utilizes both Q-money, a Thai Baht-based digital currency, and JPM Coin, which represents US dollar deposits. The system is designed to operate continuously, allowing transactions to be made 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

The first pilot transaction under Project Carina is scheduled for May 2024, where funds denominated in Q-money will be transferred to a US dollar account held at JP Morgan.

Standard Chartered launches a new open banking marketplace

Standard Chartered launched its new Open Banking Marketplace, a one-stop platform that enables both existing and prospective clients to discover, identify, and test application programming interfaces (APIs) that best meets their business objectives in a sandbox environment.

The platform provides users with access to over 100 API products spanning various sectors such as cash, foreign exchange (FX), trade, and securities. Users can explore tailored solutions across 33 global markets, create projects, and test code in a simulator environment. Additionally, they can access developer guides on API technology and security protocols.

The Open Banking Marketplace builds on an earlier iteration of the Standard Chartered’s aXess platform that was launched in 2019, and offers a richer user experience with the aim of accelerating open banking adoption by making it easier for corporates to tap into the applications required.

Nium expands regional footprint

 

Nium, a real-time cross-border payment from Singapore, announced a partnership with Artajasa, one of Indonesia’s leading payment infrastructure companies. The collaboration aims facilitate seamless, real-time cross-border transfers between Indonesia and other countries.

In addition, Nium has expanded its partnership with global payments processor Thredd to issue virtual cards throughout the the Asia Pacific (APAC) region, with the target of facilitating payments for travel intermediaries such as hotels and airlines. The collaboration harnesses Thredd’s APIs integrated into Nium’s platform to power the issuance and loading of virtual cards across nearly 30 countries in under 200 milliseconds.

Nium also revealed that its partner Jeonbuk Bank in Korea is now live with a real-time remittance service, further reflecting the company’s growth in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region.

Nium’s extensive portfolio includes licenses covering over 40 countries, with recent approvals including a Type 1 Funds Transfer Service Provider license in Japan, Prepaid Payment Instrument and Payment Aggregator licenses in India, and registration on New Zealand’s Financial Service Providers Register.

Tala partners with Maya Bank

Fintech company Tala teamed up with Maya Bank, a leading digital bank in the Philippines, to enhance its micro-loans program. Under this agreement, Maya Bank will provide Tala with loan capital amounting to PHP 2.75 billion (US$48 million), which Tala will distribute to the public in the form of micro loans.

Tala is a financial platform that integrates digital and cash ecosystems in emerging markets to empower individuals economically. With operations in Kenya, the Philippines, Mexico, and India, Tala facilitates nearly US$200 million in monthly transactions for around nine million customers, aiding them in expanding their businesses and financial well-being.

Micro Connect to expand to Southeast Asia

Charles Li Xiaojia, former head of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing, announced at Money20/20 Asia 2024 that his company, Micro Connect, could expand to Southeast Asia by Q4 2024.

Micro Connect is an investment platform thats connect global capital with micro and small businesses, helping business owners access capital.

“I would say at the earliest, our serious push to Southeast Asia is going to be in the fourth quarter,” Li told the South China Morning Post. “We don’t need regulators. If you are a fund manager or if you’re just an investor here, and you know how to invest in Thai chains, you go ahead and invest in, let’s say 100 shops of five chains and collect enough local investors to put in there.”

SymphonyAI launches AI-based SensaAI

SymphonyAI, a provider of predictive and generative enterprise AI SaaS solutions, announced the availability of SensaAI for sanctions, a platform-agnostic “AI upgrade” for any sanctions solution in APAC.

SensaAI for sanctions, delivered via API, is pre-trained and compatible with existing sanctions solutions. It complements rules-based systems by utilizing AI to process unstructured data and SWIFT transaction data. The platform employs predictive matching models to differentiate legitimate risks from false positives efficiently.

Key features of the solution include advanced AI match assessment with explainability, solution-agnostic integration, and readiness for deployment without the need for extensive training data. Additionally, the platform automates alert prioritization based on AI-generated risk scores, streamlining the screening process for investigators.

PlatON Unveils State-of-the-art Web3 Payment Solutions

PlatON, a digital public infrastructure, showcased its latest advancements in deposit tokenization technology, including its TOPOS Mint, TOPOS RemiNet, and TOPOS solutions.

TOPOS Mint is a blockchain-based tokenized deposit issuance system, offering financial institutions a solution to deploy compliant deposit tokens independently. This aims to provide stable crypto assets meeting regulatory requirements for the digital economy.

TOPOS RemiNet is an open remittance network leveraging blockchain technology to facilitate fast and cost-effective cross-border payments, enhancing global financial inclusivity.

Finally, TOPOS is an on-chain payment acquiring product.

PlatON also presented its payment methods QRPAY and ZKPAY. These solutions are part of the company’s on-chain payment acquiring solutions. They enable payment verification and fund settlement between merchants and users in both push payment and pull payment modes through smart contracts and zero-knowledge proof technology without relying on centralized key management institutions.

Primer partners with Banxa

Primer, a fintech company backed by Tencent, announced a strategic partnership with Banxa, an Australia-based crypto infrastructure provider, to promote crypto adoption through payments.

Through this collaboration, Banxa aims to consolidate its payments services, leveraging Primer’s infrastructure to access new and backup payment services worldwide. The partnership will also explore further collaboration opportunities to enhance global commerce and maximize the value of digital assets for businesses.

Banxa facilitates embedded crypto integration for businesses, offering lower fees and higher conversion rates, while Primer provides unified infrastructure for global payments and commerce across more than 35 countries.

 

Featured image credit: Edited from freepik