RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has seen the number of financial technology companies in the Kingdom increase by 79 percent in a year, according to a report released by an industry body.
Launched in 2018 by the Saudi Central Bank and the Capital Market Authority, Fintech Saudi revealed that the number of fintech firms in the Kingdom stands at 147, up from 82 in 2021.
The report also pointed out that fintech companies grew nearly 15 times from 10 companies in 2018. The infrastructure sector primarily drove the growth at 600 percent, followed by personal finance and treasury management at 175 percent, financial markets at 129 percent and private money at 125 percent.
As for the insurance sector, it stabilized without growth, while business solutions and information provision grew by 73 percent, payments and currency exchange by 65 percent, and lending and financing by 42 percent.
The reporter further stated that the number of financial companies in Riyadh accounted for 79 percent, hosting 114 headquarters, followed by Jeddah with 11, Al Khobar with three and Dammam with one.
The fintech strategy has also been an employment driver and could create 18,000 jobs by 2030 through 525 companies, contributing SR13.3 billion ($3.5 billion) to the gross domestic product and SR12.2 billion in venture capital investment.
Saudi Arabia has announced plans to increase the number of fintech companies in the Kingdom by threefold under a new national strategy.
In a statement issued in June, the Ministry of Finance said the number of firms is expected to increase to 230 by 2025.
The ministry also seeks to increase the fintech sector’s contribution to the gross domestic product to SR4.5 billion and create nearly 6,000 jobs by 2025.
The plan also aims to increase the share of digital transactions to 70 percent of all financial dealings by 2025.
The strategy aspires to raise the cumulative value of venture capital investments in fintech companies to SR2.6 billion by 2025 to boost domestic and foreign investment.