The term “fintech” is a combination of “financial technology”. It refers to the application of advanced technologies to help companies, business owners, and consumers better manage their financial operations and processes. Financial technology has significantly impacted various areas, including banking, insurance, education fee payment, airline ticketing, school fee payment, government payments, and event ticket booking.
Prior to COVID-19, people were hesitant to change their traditional ways of paying bills, especially the middle-aged and elderly. However, during the lockdown period, the only way to pay bills without getting infected was through the use of digital wallets, so they gradually shifted toward digitization. Elderly people who were doubtful to make the switch to digital payments pre-pandemic started their digital journey and paid for their utility bills, booked hospital appointments online, and purchased medicines and other essential materials online. Now, they are enjoying the process as it is easy, smooth, and secure.
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the use of mobile payments worldwide since 2020. According to the report of GLOBE NEWSWIRE, at the end of 2020, there were over 2.8 billion mobile wallet users in the world. That number is projected to increase by nearly 74% to reach 4.8 billion users by the end of 2025- nearly 60% of the world’s population. In addition, following the pandemic, we witnessed a surge in the neighborhood businesses introducing scan and pay services, allowing people to pay for whatever they need at any given time just by scanning.
This user growth could be clearly seen in Nepal as well. eSewa surpassed a significant milestone of 50 lakh customers during the pandemic. Nepal, a small country of just 30 million people, now has 5 million-plus eSewa app users – this is a significant achievement for the country and the people who use digital services.
With people transitioning to a digital lifestyle, they are also expecting the same convenience and seamless experience in other aspects of their lives. Thus, the Fintech industry is expected to continue and grow in the future by improving the quality of life and boosting economic growth. It is anticipated to play a major role in the world post-COVID-19.