According to research conducted by Karza, the global fintech market is predicted to grow at an extraordinary rate and will reach a colossal market value of around USD$324 billion (around ¥46 trillion) by 2026. This is driven by new fintech solutions and services and can revolutionise the way we do things today.
Before we look at some of the most exciting fintech solutions to keep a look out for, we explored some of the most in demand skills within fintech in our previous article. If you’re interested in a career within fintech or may already be a fintech professional, feel free to read it to make sure you’re in the loop of these skills for 2023.
Python, blockchain, machine learning...the list goes on. But what are the most in demand skills within fintech?
Top fintech innovations in 2022/2023
Here are some of the latest fintech innovations to watch out for in Japan.
Zengin EDI system (ZEDI)
ZEDI (Zengin EDI system) started operating in 2018 and is beginning to be used by many companies. ZEDI is a system provided by Zengin which enables the attachment of various transaction information such as payment notification numbers and invoice numbers when making a general transfer from the paying company to the receiving company. ZEDI makes it possible to improve the efficiency of accounting operations by streamlining it. For paying companies in particular, the system has great advantage of automating payment cancellation processes and eliminating the need to work on other manual tasks. For financial companies, ZEDI also enables them to grasp corporate transaction information and provide various types of consulting and business analysis, as well as business forecasts and market trend studies for each industry and business category to provide new financial solutions such as introducing other fintech technologies.
While ZEDI continues to develop, the lack of utilisation has been a challenge for the spread of ZEDI, but the Japan Banks’ Payment Clearing Network provides subsidies to software vendors that use ZEDI for transactions in 2022, and is planning to implement a standardised digital invoice system in preparation for the transition to the consumption tax invoicing system in October 2023. In anticipation of this transition, it has decided to subsidise development costs for businesses that develop products and services compatible with standardised digital invoices and payment linkages. It is expected that the use of ZEDI will be encouraged in Japan and there will be an uptake in terms of utilisation.
In 2020, the E-Invoice Promotion Association (EIPA), consisting of five ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) vendors, announced that the qualified invoice storage method (invoice system) would apply from October 2023. Electronic invoicing itself had been in use for some time, but this new invoice system is expected to greatly improve the operational efficiency of companies and significantly lower the operating costs of the social system when they introduce electronic invoicing, which is expected to be further utilised in Japan.
In addition, Freeway Japan, a member of the E-Invoice Standard (EIS), announced a QR Invoice standard in July 2022. It is working on providing a system compatible with QR invoicing, whereby transaction information on analogue transaction documents such as receipts, quotations and invoices can be converted to QR code, enabling accurate and easy operation of paper-based digital data and easy use for small businesses such as SMEs, entrepreneurs, and freelancers.
The Robo-advisor market has experienced a massive growth during the pandemic, but it is predicted that this trend is going to continue beyond 2023. According to Statista (2021), the number of Robo-advisor users is estimated to reach 147 million by 2023, which is 11 times the number of users in 2017. This shows that Robo-advisor investment is estimated to reach USD$1.55 trillion (around ¥223 trillion) by 2023.
Compared to the US, Robo-advisors investment is still less common in Japan. Therefore, the main target group for Robo-advisers in Japan are the middle-class workers who do not have much investment experience but are concerned about their retirement funds.
In recent years, embedded fnance, which dramatically improves the customer experience by allowing non-financial businesses to integrate financial services into their existing services, have been attracting attention as a new form of fintech. It has become a major trend on a global scale including Japan, as seen in recent major acquisitions such as Google's Spring and PayPal's Paidy, which are based on Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL). Another example of embedded finance is the application-based pre-payment for Uber, a commuting and delivery service.
If you’re interested to find out more about BNPL and what are some of the leading BNPL companies in Japan, you may read our article here: Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) in Japan | Computer Futures.
Embedded finance can be divided into six service types: payments, credit, lending, investments, insurance, and banking. In the US, there are many examples of embedded finance services that have succeeded in accomplishing a highly customised customer experience. In Japan, regulatory boosts such as changes to the Wage Settlement Law and the release of APIs through amendments to the Banking Law are providing a wider range of opportunities for the provision of financial services for companies in other industries. Therefore, more companies are expected to enter the fintech market in the coming years, with the added ability of providing embedded finance solutions. In addition, along with the spread of embedded finance, applications that consistently provide various functions from financial services to vehicle dispatch services, known as 'super-apps', are also attracting much attention, such as LINE (Japan), WeChat (China) and Alipay (China), especially in the Asian region.
More personalised services with AI
Artificial intelligence (AI) is a call for hyper-personalisation for financial institutions as it helps organisations process data and gain more accurate insights. McKinsey estimates that AI can generate up to USD$1 trillion (around ¥143,88 trillion) additional value for the global banking industry annually. By implementing AI, banks will be able to streamline internal processes, predict customer needs and behaviour, and provide appropriate instructions to deliver a more personalised experience.
For example, AI can enable financial institutions to send emails and advertisements about new products and financing options based on a customer's age, spending, bank packages, etc. By analysing behaviour, banks can personalise their communications with customers as well as the products they offer.
Also, AI is used by many insurance companies to get meaningful insights into modeling risk, modeling demand, detecting fraud, processing claims, and underwriting. These technologies are known as “insurtech” and it refers to the use of technology innovations designed to find cost savings and efficiency from the current insurance industry model. With insurtech, more companies have started seeking talent in these areas.
With increased innovations within fintech, this has led to an increase in demand for fintech professionals across a span of jobs in Japan. Many people have considered a career change especially from traditional banking or other financial institutions into insurtech or fintech companies, but what are the benefits for doing so?
The pros of shifting your career from finance to fintech
As the fintech industry continue to grow, more people from the finance industry are looking to make a career switch to fintech. But with the stability of their job in Japan within a financial institution, what are some of the top reasons that people still choose to make this jump?
- To take advantage of their past experiences (background in the financial industry can be highly valued and handy when you start your career in the fintech industry)
- To have first mover advantage over their peers
- To work in a faster pace environment
- To realise their creative ideas
- To be involved in a wider range of tasks (and gain experience in different types of projects) – especially in startups
- Opportunities to speak and learn the English language
For tips to start your career in fintech, check out our articles below:
- Fintech is a growing industry, but which industries do these talents come from? What are the hottest fintech jobs in Japan? | Computer Futures
- Whether you’re a graduate looking for a job, or a working professional looking to enter the booming Fintech sector, it’ll be good to know some of the major FinTech start-ups you should keep a lookout for in Japan: What is FinTech? Who are the FinTech start-ups to look out for? | Computer Futures
Are you a fintech professional or a job seeker interested in entering the fintech industry in Japan?
With an increasing number of new fintech solutions, services and innovation in Japan, there are many fintech companies and fintech jobs in Japan with good salary packages and great career opportunities. Whether you are in banking, securities or other financial institutions or insurance companies, now is one of the best time to enter this industry if you’ve yet to do so, whilst fintech remains relatively new in Japan and portrays a lot of potential for growth.
If you are interested in finding jobs in fintech, please get in touch with one of our consultants via the form below. A dedicated fintech specialist recruiter will be in touch to advise you and find you the job that best suits your needs. You may also view and apply for any of our latest job openings here.