Ireland’s Fintech Strategy

Author:Jonathan Ryder, EY Payments and FinTech Lead in Ireland and co-Chair of the FPAI Fintech working group.

 

I am delighted to contribute a few words on the development of Ireland’s Fintech Strategy in 2016, together with the FSI and FPAI.  The process itself was an incredibly rewarding experience and the output is an example of what can be achieved through collaboration between multiple parties within the industry when working towards a common goal.

The initiative saw collaboration across 28 core contributors from a diverse set of industries, educational bodies, the IDA, Enterprise Ireland, and input from the start-up community.

We examined the five key factors of Ireland’s Fintech ecosystem –

  • Talent
  • Capital
  • Demand
  • Policy
  • Technological expertise

These were assessed against competing global jurisdictions which informed 10 recommendations across 4 key themes.

We focused on strategies; to grow and support our Fintech community; to ensure that the types of roles within larger organisations evolve with new capabilities; and to solidify Ireland’s position as a global leader in selected technologies.

The vision for Ireland was defined as ‘supporting and fostering a vibrant, globally-orientated Fintech hub that is synonymous with; the development of cutting-edge technology; the design of great products and solutions, and the growth of globally scalable Fintech firms; Making Ireland a Fintech destination of choice’.  The recommendations have been positively received and are now aligned with the Irish government’s IFS 2020 action plan.  Keeping this connection to IFS 2020 will be key to the successful delivery of the group’s priorities.

Through my roles at EY and on the FPAI working group I have the privilege of working with organisations and individuals across the Fintech eco-system.  The level of activity and energy in the industry is palpable and Ireland’s competitive advantage against other jurisdictions really stands out. Our unique blend of world leading technology and IFS firms, combined with our strong entrepreneurial culture and positive global reputation position Ireland as a global leader in Fintech. These factors, together with the established and growing network of technology centres, innovation hubs and support functions all contribute to Ireland’s reputation as one of the locations of choice for Fintech investment.

The focus is now to successfully implement the strategy recommendations.  Workstreams have been established to drive focused initiatives while continuing to foster the sense of collaboration. This has been central to our progress to date. With Ireland’s Fintech strategy, FSI, FPAI and industry contributors have for the first time created an industry viewpoint and set of considered recommendations for developing Fintech in Ireland.  Having experienced what is possible I look forward to what this ongoing collaboration can achieve throughout 2017 and beyond.