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SFA and Austrade launch program to strengthen fintech collaboration

SINGAPORE, 28 April 2023 – The Singapore FinTech Association (SFA) and the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade), have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to boost FinTech trade and investment flows as well as business-to-business engagement between the two nations. The signing of the MOU initiates Project Lorikeet, a new programme to support Singaporean FinTechs’ expansion into Australia, as well as Australian FinTechs who wish to explore opportunities in Singapore through future programmes.

The launch of Project Lorikeet will see Austrade and SFA working closely together to have a direct impact on enterprises and startups across both countries. The programme aims to provide resources to Singapore-registered FinTechs that have existing plans to expand into the Australian market and help participating FinTechs set up a presence in Australia within a period of 6-9 months. Austrade and SFA have previously worked together successfully to support FinTech companies from each jurisdiction enter their respective markets, with a number of successful market entries in 2022.

Singapore and Australia are world leaders in the FinTech industry, with both consistently ranking in the Top 10 on global FinTech rankings. Both countries have a strong and dynamic FinTech ecosystem, backed by a stable regulatory environment, with policies that encourage innovation, whilst maintaining market stability. As such, a growing number of Singapore-based FinTechs are keen to identify opportunities and expand in Australia. The programme will therefore serve a key role in helping to provide resources and additional support in doing so. Through workshops, mission trips, business matching, networking opportunities and on-the-ground guidance, the Project Lorikeet programme will provide Singaporean FinTechs with the support they need to help them go-to-market in Australia and also provide them with opportunities to cross collaborate with Australian FinTechs where applicable.

The programme was formalised by the MOU, which was signed by Shadab Taiyabi, President at SFA and Stephen Skulley, Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner at Austrade Singapore. The signing of the MOU was witnessed by Jeffrey Siow, Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer at Enterprise Singapore, and Allaster Cox, Australian High Commissioner to Singapore.

“Within Southeast Asia, Singapore is a leading FinTech hub with great talent and promising startups that have the potential and ambition to grow their presence across the rest of Asia-Pacific, including Australia. As major trade partners, Singapore and Australia are very much aligned in their vision to deepen bilateral cooperation and promote FinTech innovation. The launch of Project Lorikeet is a major milestone in our efforts to support the expansion and growth of our homegrown FinTechs by providing them with the right resources and connecting them with strong partners down under,” said Shadab Taiyabi, President of SFA.

“Singapore and Australia’s strong economic ties and ongoing efforts to enhance bilateral fintech cooperation are providing fast-growing FinTechs with a path to growth in two of the world’s most dynamic digital economies. Austrade will continue to advance Australia’s partnerships with the financial services sector in Singapore across trade and investment.” said Stephen Skulley, Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner, Austrade Singapore.

Supporting partners of the programme currently include:

  • HSBC: HSBC will provide banking support in Singapore. HSBC has been active in supporting new economy businesses through its USD200m new economy fund in Singapore, which aims to help companies expand internationally and explore new markets.
  • Amazon Web Services (AWS): AWS will provide Singapore FinTechs with a range of cloud solutions to launch, build and grow their business in Australia. AWS’s broad range of services and solutions enables startups at every stage of their lifecycle. For example, the AWS Activate program helps early-stage startups through credits, technical support and training.  Experienced AWS startup teams in Singapore and Australia are also available to help address specific needs, including security assessments, share best practices and facilitate networking between startups and Australian founders.

To be eligible, FinTechs would have to be a Singapore registered company, an SFA member and FinTech certified. In addition, FinTechs will be required to have an existing expansion plan into Australia and have allocated resources into expansion. The selection and review process will take place in Q2 2023 and successful FinTechs will be onboarded into the programme in Q3 2023. Interested FinTechs can get in touch with SFA by contacting hello@singaporefintech.org.

 

Four men in suits stand together following the signing of a MoU which two men in the centre are holding a copy of
Stephen Skulley, Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner at Austrade Singapore and Shadab Taiyabi, President at SFA, hold up the signed MoU documents.

About Singapore FinTech Association (SFA)

The SFA is a cross-industry non-profit organisation. Its purpose is to support the development of the FinTech industry in Singapore and facilitate collaboration among the participants and stakeholders. The SFA is a member-based organisation with over 800+ members. It represents the full range of stakeholders in the FinTech industry, from early-stage innovative companies to large financial players and service providers. To further its purpose, the SFA also partners with institutions and associations from Singapore and globally to cooperate on initiatives relating to the FinTech industry. Well-connected globally, the SFA has signed over 70 international Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to lay the network for its members and ecosystem.

https://singaporefintech.org/

About Austrade

The Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) is the Australian government’s agency for promoting trade, investment, and international education both at home and abroad. Austrade advocates for the unique strengths of Australian fintechs and the value they will bring to new markets.

To discover what Australia’s best and brightest fintechs can do for your business, visit Austrade’s website.

Published: 4 May 2023

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