Tech Startups Want To Take On Australia's Big Banks

Photo: Getty/Ryan Pierse

Startups are known for shaking things up, disrupting and transforming industries with new ideas and services.

It’s something that is currently playing out in the taxi industry with apps like Uber smoothing out what has been a cumbersome process for years.

But the next sector startups have their eyes on is banking, the Australian Financial Review reports.

There’s a huge amount of money to be made in banking and finance. PWC estimates Australia’s big four banks posted a combined $27 billion in profits in 2013.

And while a good chunk of those profits come from trading and home loan financing, there are still services banks offer that can be re-engineered and market share can be captured.

Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes is also a director of Tyro Payments, an independent EFTPOS provider which has acquired a banking licence allowing it to process credit card transactions. He said there are a bunch of startups who are hot on the banks’ tails.

“The profitability of the banking industry in this country is insanity,” he said. “It doesn’t appear anywhere else in the world and I think Tyro, like a bunch of others, are trying to change that and doing a phenomenal job.”

Australia’s banking sector is highly regulated but payments is one area where startups are beginning to disrupt and nudge their way in. Startups are offering new ways of completing transactions, harnessing technology to rival banks and lure users in.

It’s already happening elsewhere with eBay subsidiary PayPal and Twitter founder Jack Dorsey’s other venture, Square. It’s only a matter of when, not if, Australians will catch on.

There’s more here.

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