Ireland’s fintech results were propped up by a single major deal last year, while the total number of deals fell significantly toward the end of 2022.
Investment into Ireland’s fintech sector fell by more than a third last year, due to interest rate hikes and cost pressures across Europe.
This is according to KPMG’s latest Pulse of Fintech report, which shows that Irish fintechs attracted just over $1bn in investment last year, down by nearly 37pc compared to 2021, when Irish fintechs attracted $1.62bn in investment.
The second half of the year saw an increase in investment, with transactions reaching $742m compared to $259m in the first half of the year. However, KPMG said this increase was “significantly skewed” by a single major deal.
This deal was the purchase of Cork’s Global Shares for $676m by JP Morgan Chase, which accounted for the bulk of Ireland’s fintech investment last year.
Excluding this major transaction, KPMG said Irish fintechs only raised $66m in the second half of the year.
The other notable investment in the second half of 2022 was the $60m raised by Dublin ‘soonicorn’ Fonoa, which provides a digital tax automation service.
Looking at each quarter of last year, the number of deals decreased sharply towards the end of 2022, as interest rates and costs increased across the Eurozone.
The fourth quarter of 2022 saw only two transactions in Ireland’s fintech sector, reaching a total of only $1.47m.
Ireland’s decline is in line with the global fintech market, which attracted $164.1bn across 6,006 deals last year. KPMG said this was a “strong showing”, but was still a 31pc decrease compared to 2021’s results.
KPMG head of technology and media Anna Scally said valuations will be “under pressure for some time” as interest rates continue to rise.
“This may inhibit some of the larger potential M&A transactions as investors wait to see if prices reduce further,” Scally said. “That said, M&A activity will likely increase for smaller size deals as corporates and larger fintechs take advantage of competitive valuations.
“We also expect that good businesses with a unique product or service will continue to attract investment from international players.”
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