Govt of Maharashtra partners with World Bank and others to make Mumbai the 'fintech gateway for India'
In 2018, Maharashtra became the first state in India to roll out a dedicated fintech policy, following which it supported multiple initiatives and programmes, and even doled out cash grants to various fintech startups.
The state government has now extended its support to the first-ever India Fintech Festival (IFF), a global platform that will showcase opportunities in Indian fintech, promote innovation in financial services, and address challenges in the ecosystem.
IFF, which will be held in Mumbai during the first week of March 2020, will witness the participation of over 5,000 delegates from 50 countries.
The festival is a collaboration between the Mumbai Fintech Hub (MFH) and the Fintech Convergence Council (FCC), and will be "driven by the GoM Fintech Policy", announced in a statement.
It is also "powered by" the World Bank, NITI AAYOG, and Invest India. MEDICI (a fintech insights platform), is the programme partner.
The Government of Maharashtra (GoM) and FCC aim to foster next-generation innovation and enable financial empowerment across the entire ecosystem. It wants to make India the world's next big fintech destination, and Mumbai a global fintech hub.
Ajit Patil, IAS, MD, Maharashtra IT Corporation said,
“With 400+ fintech startups, an API sandbox, an investment platform, education platform, and fast adoption by state - we are leading the fintech movement in India. We aim to make Mumbai a global fintech hub and the fintech gateway for India. Through IFF, we hope to foster new investments and setups in the state.”
Mumbai is already home to the highest number of fintech startups in India, according to Tracxn.
In an earlier interaction with YourStory, the Chief Acceleration Officer of a leading fintech accelerator had said,
"The presence of the banking system in Mumbai is fostering the growth of fintech startups here. Five of India’s largest banks are located within a two-kilometre radius. It helps startups connect with NBFCs, brokerages, insurance agencies, mutual funds, and the right customers."
IFF has already earned the support of illustrious BFSI personalities including Suniti Nanda (Fintech Officer, Government of Maharashtra), Naveen Surya (Chairman, Fintech Convergence Council), G Padmanabhan (Former RBI Executive Director), and Dilip Asbe (Managing Director and CEO of NPCI), among others.
The World Bank too is gung-ho about the upcoming festival.
In a statement to the media, Esperanza Lasagabaster, Practice Manager - Finance, Competitiveness and Innovation Global Practice, World Bank said:
"The World Bank recognises the positive impact fintech can have in addressing the longstanding barriers for financial inclusion, financial sector deepening and development."
"We are pleased to partner with the GoM and the FCC for the inaugural IFF. It will offer an opportunity to harness the potential of fintech responsibly and also to bring lessons from across the world to shape the further development of fintech in India," she added.
(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)