On 14 September 2015, Minister of State for International Financial Services Simon Harris TD launched the FPAI, a new trade association founded to further the interests of stakeholders involved in the rapidly evolving Irish FinTech sector.
FinTech (financial technology) is the term used to describe any technology applied to financial services. Across the broad spectrum of FinTech products available, everyday examples include mobile banking, peer to peer lending, digital currency (e.g. Bitcoin), crowdfunding (e.g. Kickstarter) and online payments systems (e.g. Stripe).
The launch of the FPAI follows the publication of the Government's five year strategy for the International Financial Services Sector (IFS2020) (the Strategy). A core component of the Strategy is to position Ireland as a leading global centre for FinTech investment by building on successes to date. It aims to foster collaboration between large international financial services companies and the indigenous base to create disruptive solutions based on innovative products and services.
The FPAI describes itself as an open and inclusive representative body, inviting businesses of all stages, from start-ups to multinationals to join. It seeks to develop the Irish Fintech Ecosystem, which it states is comprised of the following:
- Indigenous Irish early stage and scaling technology companies;
- Indigenous Irish later stage technology companies;
- Multi-national technology companies with operations in Ireland;
- Indigenous financial institutions;
- International financial services companies with operations in Ireland;
- Venture capital and private equity investors; and
- Relevant intermediaries and services providers.
Its first networking event is scheduled for 15 October 2015 at the Citi campus in North Wall Quay, Dublin 1.