WealthTech venture funding in Singapore rose sevenfold during the past four years, far outpacing equivalent figures across Asia and globally, according to a report from KPMG and digital wealth manager Endowus.
The report found that WealthTech venture funding in the Lion City hit $161m last year, down slightly from $164m the year prior, although this was still seven times as high as the $23m recorded in 2017. This compared with a more than threefold increase globally from $2.63bn to US$8.8bn and a doubling in Asia from $1.1bn to $2.2bn during the same period.
The report attributed Singapore’s outperformance to the increasing pool of high net worth and ultra high net worth individuals in the city-state, which rose by 126% and 158% respectively between 2016 and 2021.
Globally, wealth management is experiencing a boom due to a combination of factors including growing household and entrepreneurial wealth, intergenerational wealth transfer and underfunded retirement.
Asia is also outpacing other regions with its five-year growth rate in financial wealth reaching 68% compared with 26% in Europe and 55% in North America. The region is forecast to overtake Europe in 2026 as the world’s second largest wealth market.
Singapore is also the third largest wealth centre globally, having amassed over $1.5trn in cross-border wealth in 2021 and is witnessing inflows from other Asian hubs due to its perceived political stability.
“Greater transparency, alignment and personalisation of wealth services are needed to meet the increasingly sophisticated demands of investors,” said Samuel Rhee, chairman and chief investment officer of Endowus.
“I foresee greater excitement around new and emerging WealthTech players as they penetrate deeper into services and client segments that previously had little or no digital adoption.”
“WealthTech firms that are able to scale services and products to address the mass affluent while creating a secure, intuitive and customised experience will be the frontrunners in redefining the future of wealth management,” said Anton Ruddenklau, partner and global head of fintech at KPMG International.