Be ready for debate, discussion and discovery with SCxSC
By Karamjit Singh November 4, 2017
- Digital Finance conference brings together SMEs, startups, regulators and public
- Securities Commission Malaysia sees rising participation in ECF & P2P by issuers, investors
WITH two days to go before Securities Commission Malaysia hosts its popular, annual Digital Finance conference, SCxSC, participants are in for an informative rich two day event, held for the first time at an external venue to cater to the large crowd expected of over 1,000. Last year they had to close registration early when it soared past 1,000 people.
Clearly interest in digital finance has soared since the inaugural SCxSC conference in 2014 that has been designed to help educate the public and create awareness around current and emerging trends in digital finance while exposing entrepreneurs and their ideas to the public, to regulators and investors.
“It is a platform for discussion, debate and for us to communicate our educational and awareness agenda to the market,” says Chin Wei Min, (pic, right) Executive Director, Innovation, Digital & Strategy, Securities Commission Malaysia.
This year’s conference will revolve around specific areas of digital finance and will have the same format as last year with the morning sessions more formal with breakout sessions in the afternoon that are more educational with P2P financing clinics and Investor Day pitches by startups and businesses that are looking to raise money via crowd funding.
The main programme will involve interactive panel sessions by expert speakers from FSIs, fintech startups and venture capitalists on digital trends and how this can improve the delivery of financial services and products to consumers. A Rakuten fintech track will also feature international fintech entrepreneurs talking on gamification, lending, payments while Rakuten will share its own journey to embrace digital into its business.
For the SC, the conference has become a key tool for it to increase the democratization of investing, something that is very important to it as it works to encourage more Malaysians to become investors and savers, especially Millenials entering the workforce at a time of rising living costs.
“Increasing investor participation and access to financing are keys objectives for us,” notes Chin. And digital has become a key enabler of both with data supporting the fact as well.
Chin points to the fact that equity crowed funding (ECF) in Malaysia has seen 33 issuers raising RM28 million in total so far while P2P has seen more than RM10 million raised from 50 issuers.
Beyond the numbers lies a better story for SC. Data from ECF indicates that more than 70% of issuers are women or youth – two demographic groups that have traditionally had a hard time getting access to credit. “Helping them bridge this gap, fulfills a big part of our objectives,” Chin points out.
Another positive data point from the SC’s view is the fact that more than 40% of investors in ECF and P2P are aged 35 and below. “We are beginning to see different pattern of investing from this group versus their parents with a more emotional aspect to their decisions such as investing in companies that they like and are passionate about and want to support.”
Seeing good traction here in this age group has helped to prove a lot of the things the SC had hoped to achieve with its financial inclusion and democratization of investing objectives – with digital playing a key role in creating platforms and products that enable this conveniently and with a lower investment threshold and cost involved.
Which is why the SC is also focusing on promoting digital investment management or robo advisory with its lower costs which opens up micro investment opportunities by encouraging smaller and regular savings from Millenials especially.
Chin points out that the SC is looking at long term value creation, “How to help the younger generation save with the key mantra for our digital investment management being around, accessibility, convenience and affordability.”
It’s a key area the SC feels it must continue to work on and platforms such as its SCxSC have become a strong vehicle that helps create awareness of digital investing among new and existing retail investors while providing exposure to SME entrepreneurs and startups looking to raise funding via ECF or P2P.
The two day conference starts on Monday Nov 6 at Sime Darby Convention Centre.