Slowdown in Emerging Tech Use in APAC Financial Services

The optimism surrounding emerging technology adoption by APAC financial services is waning.

New research from FIS showed that emerging technology adoption rate is slowing. Mixed results in transformation and lagging operations are to blame.

The research surveyed over 2,000 senior executives at financial services companies around the world. It included more than 600 in APAC.

The results showed that 21% of firms are testing or live with blockchain solutions, compared to 60% of global leaders. This is down from 33% in 2018.

When it comes to AI, the figure goes lower. Only 16% are piloting or implementing AI solutions, compared to 51% of global leaders. This is down from 29% in 2018.

Despite the slowdown, confidence in emerging technology is growing. Around 73% of financial services companies surveyed said they were confident in meeting their growth objectives, compared to 66% in 2018 and 41% in 2017. Asia Pacific companies are also more confident than their counterparts in North America (68%) and Europe (70%).

Yet, confidence is not good enough. Only 47% noted that their companies' technology capability can support their growth plans. It is well behind the 71% of companies globally.

“Though confidence is high amongst financial services firms in APAC, our research suggests this may need to be backed up with urgent action and a faster pace of transformation. The firms we have identified as global leaders are outpacing their counterparts in Asia in the technology transformation that is defining the future of financial services, and their revenues are growing over twice as fast as a result. Firms in this region need to embrace emerging technologies to catch up,” said Sanjay Varma, group managing director for APAC, Middle East and Africa at FIS.

More telling is that fewer APAC companies have or are moving mission-critical applications to the cloud. Only 26% in the region did it compared to 48% of Readiness Leaders globally.

But, a further 22% said that they are in the planning process. Another 47%  said that their companies are assessing the feasibility of such a move.