SINGAPORE (May 13): The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) along with Singapore FinTech Association (SFA), AMTD Group and AMTD Foundation (collectively known as AMTD) launched a $6 million MAS-SFA-AMTD FinTech Solidarity Grant to help Singapore-based FinTech firms tide through the challenging business climate amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

The grant aims to help fintech firms maintain their regular business operations and to continue to innovate and grow. 

AMTD has provided an initial $2 million to support FinTech businesses, while MAS will provide an additional $4 million from the Financial Sector Development Fund.

The grant complements the $125 million support package announced by MAS on April 8 to sustain and strengthen capabilities for local financial institutions and FinTech firms amid the economic slowdown. 

It comprises two components: eligible FinTech firms will receive a one-time Business Sustenance Grant (BSG) of up to $20,000 to cover day-to-day capital expenditures (capex), and up to $40,000 on the Business Growth Grant (BGG) for their first Proof of Concept (POC) with financial institutions on the API Exchange platform, and $10,000 for each subsequent POC with a total cap of $80,000 per firm for the entire duration of the grant.

In addition, the BGG will provide funding for the salaries of undergraduate interns, capped at S$1,000 per month, per intern. This grant will support around 120 interns in the FinTech sector, assuming an average internship duration of 3 to 5 months.

“FinTech firms are in a great position to seize opportunities presented by the accelerated trend towards digital financing induced by the COVID-19 pandemic,” says Chia Hock Lai, president of the SFA.

“The Business Sustenance Grant helps FinTech firms to plug their short term financing gaps while Business Growth Grant enables them to grow and sell through the APIX platform. These will help save jobs while making our FinTech firms competitive for the post COVID-19 economic recovery world,” he adds.

Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief FinTech Officer of MAS, says “There is a surge in demand in the financial services industry around the region for solutions to address the need for remote digital services amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. FinTech firms have a great opportunity to step up actively during this period to provide these solutions.”

“The Business Growth Grant will help FinTech firms offset their costs. By conducting their POCs on APIX, financial institutions and FinTech firms will not need to set up test infrastructure for integration. This will help accelerate project development while still working remotely,” he adds.

“As an active financial institution focusing in the Asian region, we see the immediate need for the private sector to foster closer partnership with FinTech firms to formulate tailor made solutions to cater for the increasing demand for digital services and greater opportunities to scale up,” says Calvin Choi, chairman and CEO of AMTD Group, and founder and chairman of AMTD Foundation.

“This is an important moment in time to overcome challenges while identifying every opportunity and client servicing angle through proactive collaboration with the APIX platform to achieve FinTech success and FI transformation. The Business Sustenance Grant and the Business Growth Grant provide a holistic solution to ensure sustainability and growth opportunities for FinTech firms during the COVID-19 pandemic,” he adds.

Applications for the grant will open on May 18 and will be available until Dec 31, 2021.