Philippines fintechs raised US$680mn venture capital funding in 2021, a three-fold increase over the US$171mn raised in 2020 (according to Foxmont Capital Partners and Boston Consulting Group). Out of the 92 VC deals recorded in the country last year, 71 were in the fintech space but much of the value was concentrated in a few big-ticket deals, with Mynt's US$300mn funding round making it the country's lone fintech unicorn and Voyager Innovations raising US$167mn to help PayMaya expand into digital banking.
Funding activity in 2022 is off to a good start, with digital banking operator Tonik raising US$131mn in Series B in February. We expect this big-ticket deal flow trend to continue into the remainder of the year given the Philippines’ attractive positioning for fintech disruption. In this report, we highlight five companies that are worth watching and profile 200 firms making up the Philippines fintech ecosystem.
1. Mynt (Payments)
Mynt provides a broad range of services including payments, remittances, loans, business solutions and platforms. Founded in 2015, it is a partnership between Globe Telecom, the Ayala Corporation and Ant Group. The company also operates two fintech companies: GCash, a mobile payment application; and Fuse, a microloan service provider. In November 2021, Mynt raised US$300mn in funding, valuing the firm at US$2bn and making it the lone fintech unicorn of the Philippines. At the time of the fundraising, the company claimed to have 48mn users with daily app log-ins and daily active transactions of 19mn and 12mn, respectively.
2. Tonik (Digital banking)
Tonik is a digital bank providing retail financial products, including deposits, loans, savings accounts, payments, and cards. It is the first neobank to receive a digital banking licence from the central bank (BSP). The company is now focusing on rolling out its consumer lending products to help promote financial inclusion. In February 2022, Tonik raised US$131mn in a Series B round led by Mizuho Bank and other investors that would help fuel its expansion across the Philippines. In addition, the firm thinks that the partnership with Mizuho Bank could help accelerate its future international growth.
3. Philippine Digital Asset Exchange (Blockchain)
The Philippine Digital Asset Exchange (PDAX) is a cryptocurrency exchange that allows Filipinos to buy, sell, and trade digital assets against the Philippine peso in real-time. It is available both online and via mobile application. The firm is licensed and regulated by the BSP. In addition, the company manages a secure wallet allowing users to send and receive cryptocurrency from peers. In February 2022, PDAX raised US$50mn in a Series B round led by Tiger Global that it intends to use to build safe and accessible infrastructure for the digital asset economy.
4. PayMongo (Payments)
PayMongo is a payments infrastructure company that helps small businesses and entrepreneurs accept online payments. Its products include a payment API that can be integrated into websites and apps, allowing businesses to accept payments from bank cards and digital wallets like GrabPay and GCash. In October 2021, PayMongo partnered with GCash to offer buy now, pay later services. This month, PayMongo raised US$31mn in a Series B funding round, bringing the startup’s total investment to US$46mn.
5. BillEase (BNPL)
BillEase, powered by First Digital Finance Corporation, is a buy now, pay later application that divides customers’ payments into interest-bearing or interest-free installments, making online shopping affordable and convenient. It allows customers to build formal credit records. For customers who don’t have such a credit record, it uses alternate data sources to assess credit risk. Founded in 2017, the firm’s services can now be availed at more than 500 merchants. In January 2022, BillEase raised US$11mn in a Series B round led by BurdaPrincipal Investments, which brings its total funding to US$15mn.
The Philippines fintech landscape
In the table below, we have catalogued over 200 firms actively contributing to the Philippines fintech ecosystem. These businesses are active across a broad range of sectors ranging from payments and lending to insurtech and investech.
The Philippines ranks second in our emerging markets fintech attractiveness index
The table below summarises the results of our analysis. Countries with poor financial sophistication are shaded green, as this environment offers a key growth opportunity for fintech disrupters. Countries with strong technological infrastructure are also shaded green; fintechs in such markets are more able to capture growth opportunities. The Philippines scores well on both measures. See here for further details.
Note: To request access to data from our EM Fintech Country Rankings, please click here.
The ultimate guide to Philippines fintech
Other emerging market country fintech guides can be accessed here.