The Philippines is one of the countries in Asia with low banking penetration rates, with up to 66 percent of Filipinos – or more than 69 million of the population – not having bank accounts. Most of the population also do not have a financial instrument of any sort, with 95 percent not having even credit cards. However, the market is ripe for digital disruption because of a high mobile penetration and a thriving young population.
Established in 2015, Mynt (Globe Fintech Innovations), has been leading the way to financial inclusion in the Philippines.
A partnership between Globe Telecom, the Ayala Corporation, and Ant Financial, it provides innovative and first-in-world fintech (financial technology) solutions to consumers, merchants, and organizations. Its vision is to enable financial access for consumers and merchants by disrupting traditional channels through digital financial technology services.
It operates two fintech companies: GCash, a micropayment service that transforms the mobile phone into a virtual wallet for secure, fast, and convenient money transfer via the GCash App, and Fuse, a tech-based lending company that enables Filipinos to get microloans to business loans without the traditional requirements set by banks and other lending institutions.
Since its inception, GCash and Fuse have received numerous accolades from local and international award-giving bodies for its innovative approach and products to existing challenges within the Philippine financial scene.
One such instance – and its most recent – is its “GScore” and “GCredit” products, which won the prestigious Ayala Innovation Excellence Awards. “GScore” is the country’s first trust-based, credit-scoring system in the Philippines, while “GCredit” is the first mobile-based lending system. The higher a GCash user’s GScore is, the higher the credit limits they can get via their GCredit. This is all found via the GCash App.
GCash is also leading the way with innovative payment solutions in the Philippines. Launched last 2017, GCash QR is the first QR-based payment solutions in the Philippines, and have been a staple of retail establishments around the country. It works by pointing a phone’s camera with the GCash App open to a partner merchant’s QR code, cutting time spent on both a merchant’s POS and a customer’s search for exact change.
Glorietta, a leading mall in the Philippines’ National Capital Region, is the first mall in the country to fully digitize its payments with GCash QR. Said technology is also available in “palengkes,” basic wet and dry markets where majority of Filipinos go to shop for meat, seafood, and vegetables.
Eliminating customer painpoints is another mission Mynt wants to achieve. It recently removed fees for sending and receiving money for its customers, allowing them to withdraw money at no cost at BancNet and Mastercard ATMs, something traditional financial institutions have been charging customers with for years. This is especially helpful for the millions of Filipinos in provinces, to which every peso counts.
The company was also the first in the Philippines to launch the InstaPay technology with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. The technology allows GCash to instantly send money to bank accounts, with 30-plus bank brands onboarded, for free. This ties in to the company’s mission of enabling the aspirations of the financially underserved leading to finance for all.
Recently, GCash also piloted the first-ever investment feature in a mobile wallet app in the nation. The app’s “Invest Money” feature lets any isko or iska invest their GCash funds through a Money Market Fund, something usually available only to people with higher disposable incomes.
All these innovations in the Philippine fintech space is being driven by the company’s president and CEO, Anthony Thomas. Thomas started as a founding member of Mynt and initially served as its COO in 2015, and led the proverbial ship as president and CEO in 2017. The company broke milestone after milestone on his watch, growing GCash’s customer base to over 10 million in just two years. They have also acquired over 16,000 partner merchants nationwide, making GCash QR a ubiquitous payment method all over the Philippines.
Thomas himself is a multi-awarded leader, with his latest being the Asian Banker Innovation Leadership Award of 2018. Prior to Mynt, he was with an international banking group for 17 years across the Asian, Latin American and the US regions, with experiences in Consumer Lending, Cards, and Wealth Management.
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