The fintech industry in Colombia is dominated by almost 60% by companies dedicated to digital credits and payments. According to the most recent Fintank 2020 sector report, 322 companies focused on financial technologies are coming to life in the country.
This covers nine areas including credits and digital payments, corporate finance, Wealthtech , regtech , criptomonedas , blockchains solutions, crowdfunding , insurtech and neobancos. A fact to highlight from the report is that 94% of the companies are SMEs, that is, small and medium-sized enterprises.
The research , endorsed by the Colombia Fintech business association , highlighted that during the last four years the sector has grown steadily, something that is evident in the number of jobs created. In 2017 there were some 2,162 direct jobs related to fintech, while by 2020 the figure reached 9,308 workers.
Fintech solutions have proven to be fundamental for the financial inclusion of individuals, independent workers, micro-establishments, companies and enterprises in general. “They are here to stay and revolutionize financial services,” highlighted the report prepared by Juliana Carmona, director of operations at Colombia Fintech.
Fintech companies in Colombia are distributed in nine business areas. Cryptocurrencies and blockchains currently represent a 4.6% segment. Source: Colombia Fintech.
Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in Colombia
In the branch of cryptocurrencies or blockchains, the document indicates that 4.6% of all 322 fintech companies are related to Bitcoin , for example. From the above, it can be deduced that about 15 bitcoin companies remain active in the market.
The analysis does not directly name the startups, but in the case of cryptocurrencies, these are platforms for the exchange of crypto assets or exchanges , means of payment, companies that develop solutions with blockchains and companies that offer support for smart contracts in the sector of the finances.
Regarding the jobs generated by bitcoin companies affiliated with Colombia Fintech, the report speaks of 2% of the total of 9,308 jobs. In other words, the 15 companies linked to cryptoactives directly employ 186 people.
These figures could increase significantly in the coming years, as Colombian authorities approved, in 2020, the installation of a regulatory sandbox for fintech and cryptocurrencies. In fact, CriptoNoticias reported in February this year that the country had authorized 8 bitcoin exchanges for testing.
In this space, local banks will also be able to evaluate transactions related to bitcoin. The intention of the regulators is to obtain evidence to create a legal framework based on “experience, data and knowledge,” as reported by this newspaper.
After maintaining a vertical position against bitcoin for years, Colombia is relaxing its position with respect to crypto assets. This “truce” that the country is now trying to establish with cryptocurrencies already has a further path when talking about blockchains.