UPDATED – 21 Digital Bank Licence Applications Received: MAS

MAS will announce the successful applicants in June 2020. The new digital bank licencees will be expected to commence business by mid-2021.

  • 8 Jan 2020 – updated to include Funding Societies consortium partners and Sea Limited
  • 14 Jan 2020 – updated to include Enigma Group consortium, Arival and the Singapura Finance-MatchMove Pay consortium 
  • 24 Jan 2020 – included Zall consortium, Greenland Financial-MinIPO group, Asia Digital Bank Corporation

The MAS (Monetary Authority of Singapore) has announced that it received a total of 21 applications for digital bank licences as at the close of applications on 31 December.

The initiative to grant digital bank licences was announced last June, as a way to boost the competitiveness of Singapore’s banking sector. Japan, South Korea and China already have digital banks in their markets, while Hong Kong and Taiwan issued their first licences last year and Malaysia plans to accept applications in 2020.

According to MAS, the applicants include e-commerce firms, technology and telecommunications companies, FinTechs (such as crowd-funding platforms and payment services providers) and financial institutions – the majority of which are consortia.

“The majority of applicants are consortiums, with entities seeking to combine their individual strengths to enhance the digital bank’s value proposition,” MAS said.

While no applicants were mentioned by name, a host of applicants have confirmed in recent weeks that they are among the applicants.

There are 7 applicants seeking just two digital full bank licences, including:

  • Grab Holdings, Singtel
  • Razer Inc, Sheng Siong Holdings, FWD Group, LinkSure Global Holdings, Insignia Ventures Partners, Carro
  • V3 Group, EZ-Link, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, Far East Organization, Heliconia, Singapore Business Federation
  • Sea Group
  • Enigma Group, Qrypt Technologies, 2359 Media, Blockchain Worx, Enigma Global Holdings (UK)
  • Singapura Finance, MatchMove Pay
  • one unknown

There are 14 applications seeking just three digital wholesale bank licences, including:

  • Ant Financial
  • iFast Corporation, Yillion Group, Hande Group
  • ByteDance
  • AMTD Group, SP Group, Xiaomi, Funding Societies
  • Sheng Ye Capital, PhillipCapital, Advance.AI
  • Treasury Consulting Pte Ltd
  • Arival
  • Zall Smart Commerce, Marubeni, Global eTrade Services
  • Greenland Financial, MinIPO
  • Asia Digital Bank Corporation
  • four unknown

> ALSO READ: Known Applicants for Singapore Digital Bank Licences (updated 24 Jan 2020)

MAS says it will evaluate all eligible applications based on their value propositions including the innovative use of technology to serve customer needs, their ability to manage a prudent and sustainable digital banking business, and their contributions to Singapore’s financial centre.

MAS will announce the successful applicants in June 2020. Successful applicants are expected to commence business by mid-2021.

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