Meet The Top 6 Funded Taiwanese Startups in Fintechby Fintech News Hong Kong November 26, 2018
In Taiwan, regulators prefer innovators compared to disruptors. Innovators can work together with existing companies and thus, within the same regulation frameworks that have already been established.
Meanwhile, disruptors usually call for brand new regulations, which can be more difficult for the regulators to build from scratch while still protecting consumers effectively. This means that the kinds of startups that flourish in Taiwan tend to be ones that operate within existing parameters, but with innovations that either simplify or reduce prices for traditional processes.
However, there is an interesting trend developing among the top funded fintech startups in taiwan that we found—or at least, among the ones with disclosed funds based on values by Crunchbase. Based on the list below, many of these companies are in the business of cryptocurrency.
It seems like the oft-spoken of crackdowns in China and South Korea have strengthened Taiwan’s position in cryptocurrency, and deal flows prove it.
One interesting company in the list technically belongs in the travel sector, but it can be counted as a fintech company simply because they incorporated blockchain into their solutions. In fact, this particular business is popularly seen as a blockchain trendsetter in Taiwan.
With that out of the way let’s look at some of the top funded fintech startups in Taiwan.
1. CoolBitX Technology — US$13.7 million
CoolBitX Technology is a company that develops a hardware wallet for bitcoins, and its keys are stored in a separate physical device which, the company hopes, mitigates the risk of them being stolen.Its wallet is compatible with various smartphones, including Android and iPhones devices. The company was founded in 2014 and is based in Taipei, Taiwan.
2. CobinHood – US$12.8 million
CobinHood is a cryptocurrency exchange based in Taiwan, which describes itself as a next-generation crypto exchange providing zero-trading-fee based solutions. Its most recent endeavor is an ICO for simplyBrand, an ecosystem combining artificial intelligence, blockchain and crowdsourcing in a bid to eliminate counterfeit products in digital commerce.
3. BitoEX – US$12 million
Bitoex integrates cash flow and remittance, specifically linking bitcoin with remittance so that users can transfer the cryptocurrency across national borders. Based in Taiwan, BitoEX exclusively offers buying and spending BTC in convenience stores 24/7, and it also offers a web ATM to buy Bitcoin as well as withdraw local currency. It collaborated with more than 12,000 convenience stores in Taiwan.
4. OwlTing – “eight-figure USD investment”
Led by a former Google employee, OwlTing runs OwlNest, which integrates hotel accommodations management systems with blockchain technology. It was the world’s first suite of hotel booking and internal systems management software based on blockchain technology. Now, it is an e-commerce focused company that currently offers blockchain applications with services in global travel, food safety, social media platforms, global hotel bookings and etc. OwlTing has also stated that they’ve launched an ethereum-based food provenance system.
5. Maicoin – US$4.7 million
MaiCoin wants to simplify the process of acquiring, holding, and spending digital currencies on real-world goods and services while staying compliant with laws and regulations. The platform is often considered one of the largest one-stop digital asset provider in Taiwan. The exchange originally started by offering Taiwan Dollar (TWD) to crypto pairs.
6. AirSig – US$2 million
AirSig is a Taiwanese startup that makes authentication products for mobile devices, and primarily known for its Air Signature product, which allows users to enter passwords for apps, websites and even payments by waving their smartphones in the air to form “signatures”. So for example, paying for services in a VR game can also be done by waving a device in a specific pattern.
Bonus: Cherry Pay
With operations based in Taiwan, Cherry Pay does not have any official numbers listed online, but it has been heralded as one of Taiwan’s potential unicorns and at one point, the hottest fintech companies operational in Taiwan. It is a P2P money transfer matching platform that aims to provide international remittance services at lower prices than traditional wire transfers.
Unfortunately, the company has recently been forced to halt its services as it faces investigation for providing international remittance services that do not comply with Taipei’s Banking Act. According to Article 29, only bank institutions are allowed to carry out international remittance services. The case is currently under investigation, as far as we can gather.
Other resources you might be interested in
Check out our resource page to find out what are the top funded fintechs in countries like — Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, India, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea and Japan