In the last five years, the UK and Ireland have established themselves as the fastest growing region in the world for financial technology investment, a recent study shows. London has taken the position of the financial technology capital of Europe, according to Accenture.
The study indicates that global investment in fintech endeavours has shown quite a surge, reaching $2.97 billion in 2013 compared with $928 million in 2008. The US still holds the top position, but the UK and Ireland are showing greater growth. Deal volume, for example, mostly pertaining to London, has been growing at around 74% a year since 2008, compared with a rate of just 13% in Silicon Valley.
Over the same period, the value of investment in the financial technology sector in the UK and Ireland increased almost eightfold, to $265 million in 2013. It's true that this isn't anywhere near the $950 million which Silicon Valley raised last year. However, the annualised growth rate for the UK and Ireland is 51% since 2008, while for the famous high-tech region in California it's only 23%.
Now that London has become Europe's top fintech hub, the UK and Ireland account for more than half of all investment in Europe - 53%.
London's strength in financial services, combined with a flourishing tech sector, have made the city the fintech capital it now is. Four of the ten biggest banks in the world have located either their global or their European headquarters in London.
London's city leaders understand the economic importance of fintech to the capital. Statistics from the Office of the Mayor of London show that more than 24,000 tech firms are operating in the city, supporting about 48,000 jobs.
As for Ireland, it has a developing tech industry of its own but it continues to have close ties to London's fintech cluster.