In the dynamic realm of Pakistan’s fintech sector, a multitude of developments has unfolded, reflecting a mix of progress, challenges, and strategic maneuvers by key players.
ABHI’s Global Expansion and Financial Achievements
One notable highlight is the global expansion of Pakistani fintech ABHI, which ventured into the UAE with a new account-to-account payment service. ABHI’s noteworthy accomplishments in 2023 include recognition as a technology pioneer by the World Economic Forum, securing Rs. 2 billion through Sukuk Islamic bonds, and launching AbhiKarobar to provide COD financing amid inflation challenges.
Regulatory Approvals for Akhtar Fuiou and EP Systems
Akhtar Fuiou Technologies received a commercial license from the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) for its e-money wallet service, Digitt+, after a successful pilot launch. Similarly, EP Systems gained approval for pilot operations, including its e-money wallet OneZapp, showcasing the industry’s commitment to innovation.
SadaPay Facilitates Freelancers with ApplePay and GooglePay
SadaPay introduced a groundbreaking service allowing freelancers to receive payments through ApplePay and GooglePay, catering to the needs of Pakistan’s growing freelance community. This move addresses a significant gap in the financial landscape and enhances the ease of international transactions.
CheckOut and CareemPay’s Withdrawal
On the flip side, industry players CheckOut and CareemPay decided to withdraw their licenses for operations in Pakistan. Economic uncertainty and heightened competition were cited as reasons for this decision, marking a shift in the fintech landscape.
Finja’s Strategic Consolidation with OPay
Finja strategically sold its Electronic Money Institution (EMI) operations to OPay International as part of a consolidation plan, redirecting focus toward its lending business. This move aligns with Finja’s goal to streamline operations and concentrate on specific business verticals.
Paymax’s Exit and CMPECC’s Decision to Wind Up Operations
CMPECC, operating as Paymax, made the decision to wind up its operations in Pakistan after more than a year. The regulator, SBP, directed Paymax to refund all outstanding funds to its e-money wallet holders, signaling the challenges faced by some players in the competitive landscape.
Fintech Landscape Outlook
As the competition among fintech operators intensifies, a trend toward specialized and innovative services for targeted customer segments is emerging. The recent regulatory approval for fintech operators to launch international remittance services opens up new opportunities, indicating a shifting landscape with a potential focus on cross-border financial solutions.