The AltFi view on international expansion: Fintech back on the menu!

By AltFi on Monday 26 April 2021

Alternative LendingDigital BankingSavings and Investment

After a very quiet 12 months, fintechs are starting to gaze beyond their borders again.

The AltFi view on international expansion: Fintech back on the menu!
Image source: AltFi.

Weekly Leading Article

2019 was a bumper year for international expansion. 

Revolut, Nutmeg, Monzo, Raisin and N26 to name but a few, all announcing ambitious plans to break into new markets.

Then came 2020 and Covid-19 with lockdowns that trapped companies, as well as people, in their home markets.

Fintech’s ambitious global expansion was frozen in its tracks.

Now, at the end of the first quarter of 2021, that growth plan is starting to thaw.

Revolut and Tide are both heading to India. Mollie and BUX have arrived in the UK. Grover is off to Spain and Sync. is launching in Lithuania.

As venture capital funding flows and hiring ramps up, it’s starting to feel like international expansion is well and truly alive in 2021.

Plus, the twin forces of remote working and subsequent improving personal finances—which have boosted the local customer bases and fortunes of stock trading apps, digital banks and investment managers over the past year—have also made overseas markets all the more attractive.

Perhaps it’s no coincidence remote working platform Deel passed the $1bn valuation mark this week as fintechs and other firms increasingly look to international markets for growth.

All food for thought as we launch the AltFi Australasia Summit 2021 (28-29 April) this week.

Still, despite the progress that the UK and Europe are making when it comes to closing the chapter on Covid-19, it’s important to remember the chilling effects of the pandemic are still far from over.

India most notably is facing a ferocious few weeks and months ahead as cases continue to surge, ditto in Brazil and across much of South America.

Covid could yet derail the best-laid plans of many a fintech—but for now, international expansion is back on the menu.

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