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Fintech Disruption Threatens Australian Bank Dominance of the Country’s Payments Landscape

By 13 Mar, 2017November 11th, 2019Payments, Press Releases
  • Increasingly sophisticated point-of-sale technology developed by regional fintech start-ups are becoming more accessible to small-to-medium-sized merchants in Australia.
  • Australian bank-provided payments terminal technology is comparably more expensive, less innovative than its fintech start-up-developed competitors, requiring more complex integration work for merchants.

LONDON – 13 March 2017 – A new report from GreySpark Partners, a leading global capital markets consulting firm, examining the development of Australia’s payments infrastructure from 1960 to 2017. The report – titled The Payments Landscape in Australia: The Disruption of Innovative Technologies – explores an industry-wide technology shift taking place within the Australian retail consumer market.

This technology shift is characterised by fintech start-up driven advancement in point-of-sale technology systems, which can be rapidly integrated for use by Australian small-to-medium-sized merchants. Also, a growing number of these fintech vendors are gaining validation from the international Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, which facilitates the continuous development and deployment of their more agile payments solutions. As a result, consumers can conduct retail transactions through fast, convenient and seamless methods that complement the rise in demand in the country for personal technology tools to execute payments transactions.

GreySpark believes that as these fintech solutions are aiding the democratisation of the payments industry in Australia, as these companies will be able to provide access to simpler payments technology integration for merchants. This means that the fintech payments solutions will strain the traditional payments technology provision and integration effort between banks and merchants in Australia. As a result, Australian banks are under increasing pressure to provide more sophisticated payments solutions to retain their long-standing relationships with merchants and end-consumers, despite the fact that the banks retain brand recognition and a wealth of consumer data at their disposal.

The opening up of Australian payments technology integration layers – known as application programming interfaces – to third-party technology vendors and fintech start-ups for future collaboration could become a key turning point in the developing battle between Australian banks and fintech disruptors over control of the country’s payments technology landscape in the future.

GreySpark Partners’ Sydney practice is positioned between high-level technology expertise and the utilisation of business-centric service offerings that allows for effective assistance to identify, define and adapt to payment industry disruption for banks to implement forward-looking solutions that complement the emerging technological and regulatory landscape.

Doug Kilburn, a partner in GreySpark Partners’ Australia practice and report co-author, said:

 “The payments industry in Australia continues to innovate and evolve at a very rapid pace. It’s an interesting and exciting period, and it can be a challenge to keep up-to date and well-educated.

Our report reviews the current landscape, and it reflects on significant historical events giving the reader a clear understanding of where we are today, thus enabling an informed, strategic opinion.”

For further information and to purchase copies of GreySpark’s research, please visit: or e-mail:

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Notes to Editors

About GreySpark Partners

GreySpark Partners is a business, management and technology consultancy specialising in capital markets. GreySpark Partners works with investment banks, hedge funds and asset management firms to deliver solutions that work across all asset classes, with a particular focus on risk management and electronic trading. For further information, please visit: