One big four firm has found that the growing fintech sector needs not only the full spectrum of accounting services, but also access to business acumen which can come from a mentoring-type relationship with their accountant.
Opportunity for accountants to become fintech mentors
KPMG released its Scaling the Fintech Opportunity: For Sydney and Australia report this week which found that the number of fintech start-ups in Australia has increased from less than 100 in 2014 to 579 companies in 2017, with around 60 per cent of all fintech companies basing themselves in Sydney.
James Mabbott, co-author of the report and partner at KPMG Australia, told Accountants Daily that Sydney-based accountants can leverage their location to win more work with fintech companies.
“It’s all about relationships,” Mr Mabbott said. “You need to be spending time with fintech companies by establishing connections with hubs such as Stone & Chalk, joining fintech-related meet up groups and using these forums to establish relationships with fintech founders and businesses.”
Mr Mabbott emphasised that fintech clients require a full suite of services from their accountants.
“From tax, to accounting, to structuring, their aspirations are big and broad,” he said.
“But importantly, beyond accounting services fintechs really need access to good financial and commercial business acumen, advice and guidance. There is a real opportunity to establish a mentoring relationship with fintechs, which can be very fulfilling for all participants.”
The report found that the largest sectors of fintech companies in Australia are payments companies, lending companies, and wealthtech companies, which have all experienced substantial growth.
Over the next 12 months Mr Mabbott expects to see those areas continue to grow, as well as some new fintech categories emerging.
“We expect to see areas such as wealthtech and supertech emerge and grow, as well as more activity in the insurtech space,” he said.
“We expect the sector to experience strong growth. Given the ongoing strength of the Australian financial services sector, we should also expect to see more offshore entrants into our market.”
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