Author: Johanan Devanesan

Author

Joe Devanesan

Johanan Devanesan is a Senior Writer for Fintech News Philippines.

The Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) may have to wait before it sees its first e-wallet IPO, as experts suggest that leading players in the sector will hold off until market conditions improve and their financial positions strengthen. Analysts interviewed by The Philippines STAR pointed to a mix of economic risks and internal challenges as factors delaying the initial public offering of an e-wallet on the local stock exchange. The current borrowing rates set by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) are one factor affecting e-wallets, particularly in their lending businesses. GCash, a prominent e-wallet, has provided loans to over four…

Read More

Tonik claims to have become the first digital bank in the Philippines to integrate generative AI featuring ChatGPT into its operations, reflecting Tonik’s commitment to enhancing its digital banking services. “With Tonik experiencing significant growth, customer interaction surged by 2.5 times,” said Tonik Chief Operating Officer, Tomasz Borowski. “In response, our focus has been on enhancing service quality while managing operational costs effectively.” Generative AI, particularly ChatGPT, has been implemented to achieve the goals of ensuring seamless customer experiences while optimising operational efficiency. Currently, nine out of ten customer queries are directed through Tonik’s in-app chat feature, with generative AI…

Read More

Digital banking has swiftly expanded across Asia, notably achieving reasonable success in nations such as South Korea, China, and Japan. Within Southeast Asia’s digital banking sector, the Philippines joined Singapore as early adopters of digital bank products and services amid a surge in demand for digital transactions in the last few years, serving the nation’s predominantly unbanked populace. A 2019 report from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) noted that 70% of Filipinos were without bank accounts. Additionally, a decline in cheque and ATM usage coupled with an increase in digital transactions was observed in 2020, according to the BSP.…

Read More

In the Philippines, the fintech sector is developing at a rapid pace, fueled by booming digitalisation of the country’s payments, but also by the progressive stance towards cryptocurrency exchanges. As the global cryptocurrency markets have endured waves of positive and negative effects, from prominent exchange collapses to the launch of Bitcoin ETFs backed by institutional FIs, the Philippines has spent the intervening years since the pandemic planning how to better regulate cryptocurrency exchanges operating here, as well as emerging blockchain-based business models. This is amid rising crypto transactions in the Philippines, along with increased adoption of digital currencies for use…

Read More

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is on the verge of finalising a comprehensive new framework to bolster the regulatory standards for Money Service Businesses (MSBs) within the Philippines. This initiative seeks to adapt and refine the regulatory environment, addressing the dynamic nature of the financial sector and the emerging complexities within the MSB landscape, including remittance transfer companies and foreign exchange dealers. A draft circular outlining the proposed changes has been shared for public commentary, with stakeholders encouraged to contribute their insights by 15 March, 2024. This draft marks a significant step towards amending section 901-N of the Manual…

Read More

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corporation (PDIC) have updated their cooperative framework through the signing of a Revised Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on Information Exchange. The event took place at the BSP headquarters in Manila, under the leadership of BSP Governor Eli M. Remolona, Jr. and PDIC President and CEO Roberto B. Tan. The MOA updates the prior agreements from 2002 and 2004 and expands to serve as an Omnibus Agreement that includes all forms of information, data, and reports exchanged between the two bodies to support their respective and collective missions. Key enhancements…

Read More

In the rapidly evolving landscape of global finance, the fairly recent emergence of Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) represents a significant shift towards the digitalisation of national currencies. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), under the leadership of Governor Eli M. Remolona Jr., is poised to position the Philippines ahead in this digital finance revolution. The potential issuance of a CBDC by the BSP, recently announced by the Governor to be possible as early as next year or by 2026, signals a proactive approach to integrating digital currency into the Philippine financial system, echoing developments in countries such as Sweden…

Read More

GoTyme Bank stands out as a beacon of digital banking promise in the Philippines, less than two years after launch, in an era where fintech innovations are rapidly transforming the global banking landscape. The unique joint venture between Tyme Group, a Singapore-based digital banking group, and the Gokongwei Group, a prominent Philippine conglomerate, has captivated the market by amassing 2.3 million customers in just 14 months. This achievement is paralleled by the remarkable success of Tyme Group’s flagship operation in South Africa, TymeBank, which has supposedly become the world’s fastest profitable standalone digital bank. TymeBank’s rapid ascent in the industry…

Read More

In the contemporary era where the digital economy shapes the core of financial transactions, the reliance on banking services and stability has significantly escalated, including in the Philippines. This reliance is not merely a reflection of a preference for convenience, but underscores a pivotal shift towards digital banking as an indispensable component of both personal and business financial management. The ASEAN Bank Stability Report, introduced by Singaporean fintech software and services firm Brankas, evaluates the resilience and reliability of banking infrastructure, particularly focusing on the ASEAN region with an in-depth analysis of bank stability in both the Philippines and Indonesia.…

Read More

The digital finance landscape in the Philippines is undergoing a significant transformation, offering a plethora of opportunities for growth and innovation. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is at the forefront of this change, embracing global central banking standards and transitioning towards a digital financial ecosystem. This shift is not only about enhancing the efficiency of transactions but also about ensuring financial inclusivity across the nation, especially in remote areas. In addition to these governmental efforts, a study by Google, Kantar, and Sixth Factor sheds light on the changing financial consumer behavior in the Philippines. This study underscores a growing…

Read More

The financial technology landscape in the Philippines has undergone transformative changes in 2024, driven by dynamic innovations and an increasingly digital-savvy population. Today we delve into five of the top fintech trends in the Philippines shaping the nation’s financial sector, each backed by compelling insights. Data indicates a significant shift in consumer behaviour, favouring digital platforms over traditional banking methods. This trend is amplified by the rise of neobanks, which are rapidly gaining market share due to their user-friendly interfaces and personalised services. There is an increased focus on financial inclusion, with fintech solutions targeting the unbanked and underbanked segments…

Read More

The fintech space in the Philippines has been growing rapidly in 2023, with several developments that have shaped the industry and the country’s financial inclusion. The fintech sector in the Philippines witnessed significant growth in 2023 which reflects the country’s progressive approach towards embracing digital transformation in finance. These advancements not only signify regulatory evolution overseen by the country’s forward-looking central bank the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), but also indicate a shift towards more inclusive and sustainable financial practices. Here are some of the landmark developments in and around the fintech space…

Read More

Oradian, a fintech company headquartered in Croatia, has made significant strides in enhancing accessibility in the financial sector, particularly in the Philippines. Recently, they played a prominent role in a panel discussion at the Singapore Fintech Festival, focusing on scalability and its impact on financial inclusion. Antonio Separovic, Co-Founder and CEO of Oradian, spoke with Fintech News Philippines about the company’s journey and its focus on the Philippines and Southeast Asia. Strategic Focus on Emerging Markets Antonio pointed out that Oradian’s involvement in these regions is part of their strategy to address the growing demand for financial services in emerging…

Read More

The Philippine Bank of Communications (PBCOM) started operations as an overseas branch of the Chinese Bank of Communications, one of the largest banks in China that was headquartered in Taiwan – making it one of the first non-American foreign commercial banks to operate in the Philippines. From its roots in Binondo, Manila stretching as far back as 1939, PBCOM today operates nearly 100 physical branches across the Philippine islands. Recently commemorating its 84th year in commercial banking, the Bank has nonetheless been taking steps to secure its digital future as a trusted financial institution that is not left behind, but…

Read More

Held at the Shangri-La The Fort in Taguig City, Philippines from 7th to 8th August 2023, the INDX 3 Summit brought together some of the most progressive minds in the country’s fintech sector to discuss developments of its burgeoning digital economy. Under the banner “Creating What’s Next In Digital: Dare-Drive-Defy”, the prestigious annual event hosted by Fintech Alliance PH provided a platform for influential figures from the digital finance realm of the Philippines – encompassing policymakers, regulators, and the prime movers of the industry – to share their knowledge and insights impacting the local economy. The summit’s discussions revolved around the…

Read More

Felipe M Medalla, former Governor of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), earlier this year stated that the central bank of the Philippines had started a pilot wholesale central bank digital currency (CBDC) project, a major capacity-building exercise for both the BSP and the nation’s financial industry. An initiative known as Project CBDCPh for the development of a wholesale CBDC in the Philippines had been mooted the previous year, with the country studying the feasibility for a prototype by first reviewing and studying technologies for alternative payment instruments. 16 months after the launch of the pilot project in March 2022, the…

Read More

In the Philippines, the fintech sector has been expanding at an unparalleled rate, transforming how individuals and companies handle financial dealings, as evidenced in the 2023 edition of the Fintech Philippines Report, produced by Fintech News Philippines in collaboration with FinTech Alliance.ph and supported by Alibaba Cloud.  As a developing nation with a significant number of unbanked and underbanked citizens, the Philippines offers an opportune landscape for fintech solutions to narrow the financial inclusion gap and provide its people with enhanced access to financial services.  This surge is propelled by the cohesive efforts of both governmental and private entities, underpinned…

Read More

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) intends to introduce further incentives to promote sustainable and green financing in the Philippines. These incentives, including an increased single borrower’s limit (SBL) and a zero reserve requirement rate, are part of the BSP’s Strategy for Sustainable Central Banking. The BSP initiated the 11-Point Strategy for Sustainable Central Banking (SCB) in December 2022, advocating sustainability principles and practices both within its own remit and the broader financial system of the Philippines. The central bank of the Philippines has expressed its intention to vigorously promote the adoption of sustainable finance principles within the domestic banking…

Read More

Management consulting firm McKinsey & Co. has cautioned banks in the Philippines that they must adapt to the emerging and rapidly evolving landscape of digital finance or risk losing market share to emerging fintech providers. In a study entitled On the Verge of a Digital Banking Revolution in the Philippines, McKinsey experts highlighted how traditional banks in the country have neglected a vast potential customer base by focusing predominantly on wholesale and corporate services. The authors revealed that Philippine banks have significantly underinvested in digital offerings, allocating less than 10% of their revenues to information technology. This figure falls short…

Read More

The Philippine Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has deferred the rollout of a new framework for digital assets, influenced by lessons learned from the fall of Bahamas-based cryptocurrency exchange, FTX, in late 2022. The SEC Chairperson, Emilio B. Aquino, expressed that the decision to postpone was taken to ensure the protection of investors and prevent potential losses within the evolving digital assets space in the Philippines. FTX, formerly the third-largest crypto exchange with over a million users, went bankrupt due to a liquidity crisis of its proprietary token, FTT. “Though we intended to roll out these guidelines last year, we…

Read More