Here are six entrepreneurs in the Philippines who are breaking new ground in financial technology
From banking the unbanked to expanding access to credit, here are six Filipino honourees on the Gen.T List 2021 you need to know in fintech.
1. Katrina Chan
For firing up the Philippine startup scene
Co-founder and director, QBO
With her accelerator QBO, which she co-founded in 2016, Katrina Chan aims to kickstart the Philippines’ tech startup ecosystem. The company is a novel private-public partnership, involving collaboration with the Department of Science and Technology, Department of Trade and Industry, JP Morgan and accelerator IdeaSpace. It organises the annual Philippine Startup Week and has conducted more than 500 startup programmes, and recently launched Start Up Pinay to support women in technology.
2. Sparky Perreras
For banking the unbanked
Co-founder and CEO, PearlPay
Thanks to PearlPay, many people in the Philippines and Indonesia have access to financial services for the first time. Co-founded by Sparky Perreras, it offers a white label mobile wallet service to rural banks in both countries, and runs as a social enterprise, prioritising financial empowerment over profit.
3. Earl Martin Valencia
For dramatically expanding access to credit
Instant credit is potentially available to millions, thanks to Earl Valencia. His startup Plentina offers buy-now, pay-later microloans—interest-free, with a flat fee—allowing people to make everyday purchases and effectively pay for them later. Its app uses machine learning to work out whether people are trustworthy borrowers, effectively building its own credit ratings. Commercial partners signed up so far include 7-Eleven and telecoms company Smart Communications.
4. Jon Edward Santillan
For making it easier for migrant workers to send money home
Founder and CEO, Denarri Cash
The world may be getting smaller, but migrant workers still struggle to send money home. Denarii Cash uses blockchain to provide a peer-to-peer, no-fee service that has become a remittance lifeline between Filipino workers and their families. CEO Jon Edward Santillan, who founded the company in 2017, is now focusing on expanding the platform to make it accessible to companies and financial institutions.
5. Francis Plaza
For creating an online payment platform that’s easy to use
Founder and CEO, PayMonggo
PayMongo helps businesses in the Philippines accept online payments from multiple channels. As CEO, Francis Plaza aims to build an invisible engine of commerce, providing opportunities to participate and succeed in the rapidly transforming digital economy. PayMongo is among the fastest-growing fintech startups in Southeast Asia, having grown 40 times in 2020 alone and raised almost US$15 million to date.
6. Rebecca Kersch
For making it easier for Filipinos abroad to help their loved ones
Founder and CEO, Tang App
Tang App is an international peer-to-peer mobile payment app founded by Rebecca Kersch. Having already raised US$1.5 million in pre-seed funding, her mission for the company is focused on financial inclusion: using technology to make it simpler, safer and cheaper for overseas workers to send money back home. Mission accomplished: Tang App allows Filipinos in and out of the country to send phone credit or money to loved ones within seconds.