As business functionality and control are increasingly migrating to digital platforms, it’s perhaps not surprising that transactional methodology and systems are increasingly tech-focused too.
One of the phenomena this has supported is a surge in partnerships forged online, to provide peer to peer services. The option to bypass traditional transactions and buying patterns, has opened the door to a growing range of opportunities for people to sell or buy services and assets within a sharing economy. This is changing the face of some business sectors.
The prediction is that the sharing economy will be worth over $335 billion by 2025. Fintech is pivotal in this, as it’s responsible for developing the accessible and efficient systems to carry out these digital “barter and buy” opportunities. It offers a convenient solution for individuals or companies who have services or products they want to sell beyond traditional frameworks, going directly to consumers.
This is also a result of rapid advances in mobile technology, which have enabled consumers to share and find products and services at the touch of a button.
The perfect examples of peer to peer selling via a Fintech partnership are Uber and Airbnb. Both rely on someone making their personal commodity (car and home) available to those seeking lifts or places to stay, using sophisticated technology partnership platforms to bring the two together.
The gig economy
This peer to peer sharing and the Fintech that supports it are also linked to the gig economy. Improved digital connectivity and communication is enabling more people to work from any location. They can offer their skills in return for freelance or short-term employment contracts.
Transpose this on to companies facing staffing issues. They now have new opportunities for flexibility and problem-solving. Fintech can connect them to people with the right skills, at exactly the time they most need them, disposing of the high cost of more established recruitment methods.
Creativity is rapidly expanding the sharing and gig economy. They are no longer confined to traditional job roles you would associate with temporary service “gigs”. There ever-increasing new and innovative ways to piggyback on Fintech to create transactional opportunities. One of the most prevalent are small enterprises who will go and pick up take away meals for you, or deliver items on your behalf.
It’s believed that around five million people in the UK are now employed in this sort of gig service endeavour.
The sharing economy, Fintech and financial services
Perhaps the most significant aspect of this surge in peer to peer sharing using Fintech, is the impact on the financial services sector. At one time the high street investment and borrowing organisations had a stranglehold.
Fintech has created a very real rival. It provides the general public and businesses with safe, 24-hour inclusive and efficient alternatives. People are using it to engage with each other and transact peer to peer lending. Those with investment capital to spare can find individuals or small enterprises needing an injection of cash through crowdfunding platforms for example.
Peer to peer lending using Fintech also requires less cost to facilitate and therefore provides greater equality of opportunity.
Where could Fintech and the sharing economy go?
Much of the pattern that’s emerging is in line with modern consumer trends. People are increasingly looking for convenient and effortless digital opportunities. Fintech enables this to happen across a vast range of business sectors, once partnerships have been created. Even for high-value items.
For example, blockchain technology is making it possible to buy a property, vehicle or piece of land on the other side of the world, with maximum security and minimum fuss. In fact, this particular transaction method is beginning to enter the mainstream as well as digital transaction preferences. Anyone who wants to connect online to carry out secure transactions, with no cost or middleman, must seek out cryptocurrency advice.
This literally leads to endless possibilities for new peer to peer services and goods and more financial services conducted online.