Many central European cities are competing to attract fintech companies, hoping to be recognized as a hub.
Warsaw benefits advantaged by the region’s strong demographics and the biggest banking sector in central Europe. The Polish government is contributing, by fostering fintech companies. For Poland’s deputy prime minister and finance minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, the opportunity is big: “We couldn’t take part in the industrial revolution because our country was not on the map at the time... We couldn’t take part in the IT revolution because we had a bad system and a lack of independence. But we can successfully take part in the digital revolution”.
The capital of Estonia, Tallinn, is home to one of the most tech-savvy and digitally focused government in Europe. However, entrepreneurs tend to expatriate themselves in search of funds. Since 2014, the Estonian government’s e-residency program allows foreign entrepreneurs to register their company in Estonia, carry out banking transactions, declare taxes and sign documents online.
Prague boast a growing fintech scene, notably in the blockchain branch. The Czech capital hosts the second biggest banking sector in the region. While it is well populated, Czech Republic lacks a domestic market.
It is most likely that more than one hub will establish itself. Anna Sieńko, CEE Technology leader at PwC remarked: “Maybe because we have many different languages in central Europe, people tend to stay in their countries and try to build something there first”.