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Over 90% of fintech firms in Singapore plan to expand headcount: poll

SOME 94 per cent of fintech firms in Singapore intend to expand their current workforce within the next 12 months despite a lack of talent shortages, according to a survey released on Monday.

About 28 per cent of respondents expect to double their headcount within the next 36 months as well.

The poll, jointly launched by the Singapore FinTech Association (SFA) and PwC Singapore, found that more than 40 per cent of firms employ 30 or more employees, and 31 per cent of respondents have between 11 and 30 workers.

The fintech industry in Singapore is estimated to employ around 6,500 to 10,000 people in total, based on extrapolated survey results.

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With hiring expected to increase significantly over the next 12 to 36 months and all other factors being equal, the number of both firms and employees within the industry are expected to increase substantially, said the report.

Acording to survey findings, the shortage of talent across the industry appears to have been mitigated.

Around 59 per cent of firms reported no talent shortfall, while 21 per cent of respondents reported a 0 to 25 per cent shortage in talent across 13 unique roles, including business development, compliance and hardware development positions.

SFA president Chia Hock Lai said: "As (Singapore is) a leading regional financial centre and home to 40 per cent of fintech firms in Asean, job prospects in fintech remain strong in the coming years, with demand coming from both local firms and international firms that use Singapore as their gateway into Asean regions."

He told The Straits Times that the survey was done as a follow-up to a November 2017 survey conducted with more than 70 SFA members, which found that talent shortage was one of the key concerns among fintech firms here.

The FinTech Talent Survey 2019 was sent out to 832 individuals from 394 fintech firms in Singapore in April, and received 93 responses.

According to the poll, the average fintech firm in Singapore employs 10.8 people, with the most employees working in software and application development (43 per cent) and sales, marketing and business development (22 per cent).


PwC fintech partner Wong Wanyi noted that while there is much scope for growth in the fintech sector in the coming years, relying solely on foreign talent will not be sufficient to sustain this growth.

"It's very important for Singapore to continue to train and equip (its) workforce with the right skills and mindset that will help the industry thrive in the long run," she said.