Lebanon & FinTech

Lebanon & FinTech

Flag of Lebanon

Lebanon is fast growing as a FinTech hub.

Martyrs’ Square in Beirut during celebrations marking the release by the French of Lebanon’s government from Rashayya prison on 22 November 1943

It has really emerged as a major player in the space with both government and private sector capital investments into the industry. Plus, with an archaic financial system, as a result, FinTech is poised to flourish and maybe even dominate Lebanon.

Lebanon from space. Snow cover can be seen on the western Mount Lebanon and eastern Anti-Lebanon mountain ranges

However, the emergence of the industry has not been perfect.

Of course, there are terribly safety concerns.

Just look at the recent attack.

According to think tank Rebellion Research:

“Lebanon has the third most competitive FinTech startup ecosystem in the MENA region. It hosts 14% of the region’s fintech startups and receive services from 27% of them, trailing just behind Saudi Arabia.

Lebanon’s robust financial sector makes up 8% of the GDP in 2015 while its banks’ assets amount to 4 times of its GDP. Yet, it has a low bank account penetration rate of 44.8%, leaving FinTech companies room to explore.

Today, Lebanon hosts 28 Fintech companies.

Among them, the first mobile payment app in Lebanon PinPay. Launched in 2011, and has since sparked growth of similar services like Simba and Tap2Pay.

‘Pilgrimage to the Cedars of Libanon’ – painting by a Hungarian painter, Csontváry Kosztka Tivadar.

Other leading companies include Murex, Areeba, and Foo, providing services ranging from Business-to-Business (B2B) solutions to integrated platforms for major banks worldwide.

Mount Lebanon is a mountain range in Lebanon. It averages above 2,500 m (8,200 ft) in elevation.

Despite Lebanon’s terrible credit rating, Beirut is still attracting investments—Gulf-based FinTech FlexxPay has opened its telesales center earlier this month, and aside from FinTech, electric car manufacturer Electra also plans to launch its factory in Beirut.”

United Nations Lebanon headquarters in Beirut

In conclusion, we will keep our eyes out for Lebanon’s emergence as a major player in years to come!