Islamic Finance

26% of Islamic fintechs have at least one female founder - survey


26% of Islamic fintechs have at least one female founder, said the Global Islamic Fintech Report released on Tuesday (Dec 10).

The report is produced by London-based digital finance firm Elipses in collaboration with the UK Islamic Fintech Panel.

It is based on a survey with 180 companies worldwide across five categories: fintechs (50%), ecosystem players such as incubators and accelerators (22%), service providers such as consultancies (16%), financial institutions (8%), and investors (4%), Elipses Co-founder and Principal, Abdul Haseeb Basit told Salaam Gateway.

The biggest group of respondents, at 38%, is based in the UK, followed by 28% in the Middle East, 14% in Other Europe, 12% based in Southeast Asia, 6% were from North America, and 2% from Other Asia.

The survey of 90 Islamic fintechs found that on average, almost a quarter of their staff is female.

The report said the Islamic fintech sector is in “the relatively early stages of maturity” as 68% of respondents were 10 or less in team size, with only 4% having a team of larger than 100.

It found that P2P crowdfunding and challenger banking are the top expected growth sectors for Islamic fintech in 2020, and Southeast Asia is the region to watch.

The Global Islamic Fintech Report 2019 does not say how many Islamic fintechs are currently operating.

From previous studies, there are around 100 Islamic fintechs globally. The State of the Global Islamic Economy 2019/20 report from growth strategy research and advisory firm DinarStandard identified 93 Islamic fintech start-ups and in 2017, Islamic finance-focused media company IFN said there were 103 fintech companies from 24 countries that either identified as Shariah-compliant or are offering Shariah-compliant solutions. 

The Global Islamic Fintech Report 2019 can be downloaded from this link.

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