This interview is part of a series of interviews featuring key Fintech influencers in Southeast Asia. Following up on our first edition published last year, LATTICE80 presents the complete list of Top 100 SEA Fintech Influencers 2019 who are charting the path for Fintech in the region for 2019.
Disclaimer: The interviews are published on a rolling basis and the order by which they are published by no means representative of any rankings.
This article features an interview with Diego Jose Ramos, Founding Director of the Philippine Association for Digital Commerce and Decentralized Industries (PADCDI), and one of our Top 100 SEA Fintech Influencers.
1. Tell us about what you do
I co-founded, and now sit silently on the board with a few Tech startups and shifted my interest in the past year producing content for several Conferences, bring people together in C-level dinners and organize groups pushing the local fintech and conference industry. We also aim to the self regulating body that will work closely with the government to implement code of conduct and good business.
2. Why is your project / start-up / role so important in addressing a need in the community, or in advancing the development of Fintech in the region?
The Philippines has one the lowest percentage of the unbanked in the region, highest remittances from overseas workers, very traditional in banking process, and a pool of surprise that we are also known as the selfie capital of the world, which means, one of the most ready among the developing countries in terms of technology. And most importantly, we do not have local regulations in digital currency. This tell us one thing, we are ready for that shot on the “moon” but we need catalysts in the ecosystem to develop this industry.
3. In your opinion, what are the key challenges facing Fintech development and adoption in Southeast Asia? What are some new challenges you expect to see going forward?
Government regulations have been the greatest challenge of a developing fintech industry. The ASEAN integration measures has been taking a turtle pace. Most investors this year has been on a wait and see stage after the ICO hype last year. The industry needs more proof of success before we can this forward.
4. How do you expect the Fintech landscape in Southeast Asia to change in the next 5 years?
We might be skipping some steps in Fintech development stage and parachute fast to the stage of trust.
5. What advice do you have for budding Fintech entrepreneurs in Southeast Asia?
The best advise I can give for them is ground up. Creating a marketplace or a community to validate their ideals, develop trust while taking their launch through stages.