Covid just accelerated trends that were already happening, say Plaid and Checkout.com

By Aisling Finn on Friday 20 November 2020

Digital Banking

Keith Grose, head of UK at Plaid, and Antoine Nougué, head of commercial at Checkout.com, were speaking at the AltFi Festival of Finance 2020 last week when they both agreed that Covid-19 gave a helpful nudge to e-commerce.

Covid just accelerated trends that were already happening, say Plaid and Checkout.com
Image source: Keith Grose and Antoine Nougué speaking at AltFi's Festival of Finance 2020

Covid-19 is accelerating a number of trends bullish for fintech firms, according to Keith Grose, head of UK at Plaid. 

Grose was speaking at AltFi’s Festival of Finance 2020 last week when he claimed that while we experienced a rapid shift to shopping online throughout this year as countries were plunged in and out of lockdown, this was a shift that was already in motion. 

“What Coronavirus did, by forcing everyone into their houses as you took entire populations that hadn’t used fintech before and essentially forced them to use it,” Grose said when speaking at the virtual event. 

According to Grose, in March and April 2020, the fastest-growing segment of customers using PayPal was the over-50s, a noticeable shift from the normal under 35 demographic that PayPal counts as its main support.  

Speaking alongside Grose, Antoine Nougué, head of commercial at payment processing firm Checkout.com, wholeheartedly agreed. 

Nougué told AltFi: “The restrictions of the pandemic have accelerated the trend of people buying or consuming products and services online.” 

“I think that being able to buy your daily provisions or access banking services online has become a necessity for many people since Covid. There is a real opportunity for fintech businesses to step up to the plate and prove their worth,” he continued.  

Nougué went on to add that Checkout.com has experienced a “massive spike” in online transactions as people have been forced to shop online. 

Both speakers also agreed that towards the end of 2020 and into 2021, despite the huge volume of online transactions, we will see “some adjustment back to more people buying offline once we get back into the normal cadence of life,” Grose told AltFi.

Both Plaid and Checkout.com have had a strong 2020 so far, with Plaid kicking off the year with a $5.3bn takeover offer from Visa and Checkout.com tripled its valuation to $5.5bn following the closure of a $150m Series B funding round.  

Since then both fintechs have gone from strength to strength as e-commerce seeming takes over with no signs of slowing down just yet.  

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