Credit cards have been around for quite a while. These little pieces of plastics started to be issued as early as the 1920s by stores to let loyal customers spend more easily. Fast forward to today, and things have changed quite a lot. And not so much at the same time. Of the 2.8 billion credit cards issued worlwide (of which more than a billion just in the U.S.), there is a bit of everything. What is changing in the credit cards’ space? What is not? Fintech Review asked a few questions to David Boyd, Co-founder and Director at Finty.
Tell us more about Finty. What is your elevator pitch?
Money can get complicated quickly. You can make it, trade it, send it, invest it, or spend it.
That’s why we built the Finty comparison platform to help people make good money decisions by breaking down complex financial products into easy-to-understand comparison pages, product reviews, and top offers from 200+ partners.
Over the years, we’ve helped millions of people to compare products, save money, get approved for cards & loans, earn billions of airline points, and invest money.
What is your background and what is the story behind the company?
Finty started out as Credit Card Compare. We did nothing but compare credit cards in Australia for more than 10 years.
After acquiring Finty.com in 2018, we made the decision to rebrand Credit Card Compare to Finty so we could compare other types of products.
Even though we cover more product verticals than we used to, Finty still compares Australian credit cards and we continue to monitor the market closely.
What is going in credit cards?
Consumer demand for credit cards in Australia has been pushed around by a lot of factors.
After reaching “peak credit” in 2018, tightening credit legislation and skyrocketing house prices suppressed personal credit lending.
The burgeoning Buy Now, Pay Later payments space also sapped the demand for credit cards. The all-important younger demographic no longer wanted a credit card, which they viewed as a debt trap.
But it was the pandemic that had the most dramatic impact, making consumers more cautious about taking out new credit cards and lenders pumped the breaks.
Those who hadn’t been convinced by Buy Now, Pay Later because of credit card rewards became reluctant to apply for a new credit card. Why would consumers rush to apply for a shiney new Qantas card since they couldn’t leave Fortress Australia for nearly two years?
However, things have changed significantly. In fact, we recently published new market research that shows credit card demand has come roaring back.
With borders reopening, Australians are able to travel again. Unsurprisingly, the most profound rebound can be seen for travel-related credit cards, demand for which is now back to pre-pandemic levels.
The recovery is not the same across the board, though. Demand for balance transfers has remained noticeably subdued. We think this may change if the high cost of living isn’t addressed.
Any innovation in fintech more broadly that you are really excited about?
We are very interested in what’s going on in the crypto space. We’re witnessing the rewiring of the financial system. Although it has been rocky since late 2021 — to say the least — we think the market will rebound. A lot of projects probably will not survive in the long term, which is not a bad thing.
What Revolut is doing in Europe is very interesting. As they add more features, they’re increasingly becoming a super-app for finance.
Crypto projects that address real-world problems like Helium and Chia interest us too – they don’t just exist for the sake of it.
Any plans for the future or product roadmap you want people to know about?
Next up for Finty will be to go live in more countries and deeper coverage across crypto, investing, and cards.