Global financial science and technology financing reached 111.8 billion US dollars in 2018, up 120% from 50.8 billion US dollars in 2017. Mega – mergers and acquisitions are the main factors driving global financial science and technology. The main characteristics are that cross-border mergers and acquisitions have increased significantly, regulatory technologies and block chains have become hot cakes, and enterprises are increasingly interested in technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning.
The latest statistical report released by KPMG, an international accounting firm, shows that global finance and technology financing reached US $ 111.8 billion in 2018, up 120% from US $ 50.8 billion in 2017. Mega mergers and acquisitions are the main factors driving global financial technology.
Last year, there were three transactions in the global financial science and technology field with an amount exceeding 10 billion US dollars. Among them, the US Blackstone Group’s investment in Thomson Reuters’s financial and risk sector, Refinitiv, was the largest transaction in the year with an investment amount of 17 billion US dollars, followed by Ant Financial’s round C financing of 14 billion US dollars, followed by Vantiv’s acquisition of WorldPay, a payment company, with 12.86 billion US dollars. In addition, there are 14 mergers and acquisitions with a total value of more than 1 billion US dollars. Data show that financial technology investment reached new highs last year in many fields such as venture capital, mergers and acquisitions and private equity.
In the whole year of last year, 2196 mergers and acquisitions were made in the global financial science and technology field, up from 2165 in 2017. Paul Lee, KPMG’s global co-head of financial science and technology, pointed out that the growing transaction scale, higher-level M & A activities and diversity of transaction areas indicate that the financial science and technology sector is maturing globally. Financial science and technology start-ups in Germany, Brazil and other countries are attracting more large-scale and later rounds of financing, while mature financial science and technology giants in the US, UK and Asian markets are investing and acquiring on their own to expand their products and markets.
Looking at last year’s financial investment in science and technology, there are three significant characteristics: First, cross-border mergers and acquisitions have increased significantly. Last year there were 155 cross-border mergers and acquisitions, with a total investment of about 53.5 billion US dollars, up from 153 cases and 18.9 billion US dollars in 2017. In cross-border mergers and acquisitions, the United States and Europe attracted investment of 28 billion US dollars and 21.6 billion US dollars respectively. Second, regulatory techniques and block chains have become hot cakes. Last year, investment in regulatory technology tripled from $ 1.2 billion in 2017 to $ 3.7 billion. Block chain investment remained at a rapid pace, attracting investment of 4.5 billion US dollars, slightly lower than the 4.8 billion US dollars last year. Third, enterprises are increasingly interested in technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning. These technologies can manage compliance requirements more effectively, and the volume of technology investment is increasing.
In terms of regional distribution, the United States leads the way. Last year, U.S. financial investment in science and technology reached 52.5 billion U.S. dollars, more than double the 24 billion U.S. dollars last year, with 1,061 new transactions. Mergers and acquisitions have become major investment activities, with financial, technological and venture capital funds in the United States rising sharply from US $ 7 billion to US $ 11.4 billion. Europe followed, with record investment. Last year, Europe contributed 536 financial and technological investment transactions, totaling 34.2 billion US dollars, up 180% from 12.2 billion US dollars last year. Among them, Britain’s investment reached 20.7 billion US dollars, up sharply from 5.6 billion US dollars last year, becoming a major recipient of financial and technological investment in Europe.
Investment in financial science and technology in Asia increased to a new high of US $ 22.7 billion from US $ 12.5 billion in 2017. China is far ahead of Asia with 83 transactions and a total of US $ 18.2 billion. China’s technology giants mainly focus on the global market, while the smaller domestic financial technology companies focus on the Southeast Asian market. China Financial Technology Corporation has further stepped into the Asian market, driving other competitors in the region to expand in the Asian region.
Looking ahead to 2019, industry experts believe that geopolitical instability and worries about trade will cast a shadow over the prospect of financial science and technology investment. According to the analysis, with the continuous improvement of regulatory technology and insurance technology, investment in financial technology will continue to grow, and artificial intelligence and automation will continue to be highly praised by investors. Biometrics security technology, face recognition technology and voice recognition technology are attracting more and more financial technology investors’ attention.