Fintech

Embedded Finance, Web3 and ESG Lead 2023 Fintech Investment Amid Recessionary Pressures, according to FIS® Global Innovation Report

Key facts

  • A global study of 2,000 executives at firms across markets revealed plans to increase investment in embedded finance, environmental, social, and governance (ESG) frameworks, and decentralized finance in 2023, including cautious optimism towards cryptocurrency.
  • 44% of financial services firms' executives across the globe say they will invest significantly in developing embedded finance products in 2023 as consumers demand more convenient ways to pay, bank and invest.
  • Nearly two-thirds (61%) of all non-financial services executives told FIS it will be strategically important to have a presence in the metaverse in the next three years.
  • ESG is top of mind for financial services firms globally, with 60% of executives saying they are developing new ESG products and services.

New research released today from FIS ® (NYSE: FIS), a global leader in financial services technology, reveals global c-suite executives plan to invest significantly in Web3, environmental, social, and governance (ESG) frameworks and embedded finance in 2023, as companies look to fintech innovation to fuel growth despite economic uncertainty.

The inaugural 2023 Global Innovation Report asked c-suite and senior executives in financial services (banks, insurers, capital markets firms, and fintechs) and non-financial businesses (retail, restaurants, travel, gaming and digital content, and technology providers) globally about their key areas of financial investment in 2023.

According to the study, most executives across the globe say they expect a major or moderate impact from the following areas of fintech in the coming year: ESG (84%), embedded finance (84%), decentralized finance (DeFi) (82%), the metaverse (80%) and cryptocurrencies (77%).

These projections are largely mirrored by U.S. executives, who expect innovation in these spaces to impact their business in 2023: ESG (83%), DeFi (82%), embedded finance (81%), the metaverse (78%) and cryptocurrencies (78%).

"As the threat of a global economic slowdown looms and businesses look for ways to thrive through the downturn, it is evident that unleashing growth requires focus, top-down executive support, a culture of innovation, and collaboration to anticipate and shape to consumer demand," said Himal Makwana, Global Head of Product Strategy & Web3 at FIS. "Our findings show that many executives see decentralized finance, web3 infrastructure, digital assets and currencies as critical components of their long term strategy, both from a defensive and offensive perspective, to help lead the way into this next phase of the digital revolution."

U.S. Firms are Planning for Digital Assets and Next Generation Internet

The next generation of the Internet, referred to as Web3, centers around decentralized infrastructure like blockchain technology and includes innovations such as cryptocurrency, DeFi, and the metaverse. According to new FIS research, the U.S. is keeping pace with other countries' investment in Web3 as organizations around the world look for the next growth opportunity.

  • While nearly one-third (29%) of U.S. respondents expressed no interest today in developing cryptocurrency services, only 5% of financial services firms told FIS they do not anticipate offering such capabilities in three years' time.
  • Financial services firms cited a lack of ecosystem services to support crypto (29%), lack of interoperability between platforms (28%), and lack of clarity around regulations (26%) as key barriers to greater adoption within their organizations.
  • Non-financial services firms shared similar concerns, however, 24% noted lack of crypto services from banks and other financial services providers as a barrier.
  • Almost half of U.S. financial services firms (47%) recognized DeFi to be a major growth opportunity for their organization.
  • There are concerns about DeFi, with 50% of financial services firms citing poor user experience as a barrier to adoption and 47% saying they need to better understand the risks involved before they will participate.
  • 59% of financial services firms are actively researching potential opportunities in the metaverse, while 45% of non-financial businesses say it will be strategically important to have a presence in the metaverse in the next three years.

Embedded Finance to Empower U.S. Businesses in 2023

Embedded finance is when consumers have unique, tailored financial services delivered to them at their point of need by non-financial companies. Embedded payments are most familiar to consumers, enabling the speed and convenience of paying for goods and services in an app with just a single click. New use cases across banking, lending and investing are emerging and the drive to deliver embedded financial services is on the rise in the U.S.

  • 36% of financial services firms will invest significantly in developing embedded finance products within 12 months, according to the study.
  • Meanwhile, 59% of non-financial firms that see an impact from embedded finance on their business told FIS they will respond by increasing their tech or research and development budget this year.

ESG is Widely Seen as a Competitive Must-Have in the U.S.

ESG is the systematic consideration of environmental, social and governance factors alongside financial factors when making decisions about investments, business practices, and commercial relationships. If supported by the right technology, ESG can open new growth opportunities and competitiveness in the U.S. market.

  • 56% financial services firms in the U.S. say ESG offers an opportunity to improve their competitiveness in the market.
  • 60% of financial services firms told FIS they are developing new products and services.
  • To address difficulties in accessing and analyzing their own ESG data, 56% of financial services firms say they are investing in technology to improve reporting and disclosures, giving clients more transparency into ESG scores and/or providing more granular ESG ratings of assets and securities.

Methodology

All data is based on a survey of 2,000 executives from financial services firms (banks, insurers, capital markets firms and fintechs) and non-financial services businesses (merchants, corporates and technology providers) in nine countries (Australia, Brazil, Canada Germany, Hong Kong, India Singapore, the U.K. and the U.S.). The survey was conducted by Longitude Partners on FIS' behalf between July and September 2022.

About FIS

FIS is a leading provider of technology solutions for financial institutions and businesses of all sizes and across any industry globally. We enable the movement of commerce by unlocking the financial technology that powers the world's economy. Our employees are dedicated to advancing the way the world pays, banks and invests through our trusted innovation, system performance and flexible architecture. We help our clients use technology in innovative ways to solve business-critical challenges and deliver superior experiences for their customers. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida, FIS is a member of the Fortune 500 ® and the Standard & Poor's 500 ® Index. To learn more, visit www.FISglobal.com . Follow FIS on Facebook , LinkedIn and Twitter ( @FISglobal ).

For More Information
Kim Snider, 904.438.6278
Senior Vice President
FIS Global Marketing and Communications
kim.snider@fisglobal.com

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FIS
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East Side Games Group to Develop Star Trek-Themed Mobile Game in Partnership with ViacomCBS Consumer Products

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east side games logo (CNW Group/East Side Games Group)

In addition to the storylines and characters from Star Trek: Lower Decks , the mobile game will include characters and stories from across the franchise, reimagining them for fans through the lens of Star Trek: Lower Decks . The Star Trek: Lower Decks -themed game will be developed by East Side Games (" ESG "), in partnership with VCP, utilizing ESGG's proven Game Kit-Idle technology, and will be published by ESG. Australian-based video game company Mighty Kingdom Limited (" MK ") will be co-developing the game alongside ESG, providing the project with MK's franchise knowledge and development expertise. The Star Trek: Lower Decks -themed idle game is expected to launch worldwide in 2022.

The free-to-play mobile game will feature the Star Trek: Lower Decks style and humour to transport players into the Star Trek Universe and will feature characters and settings from across the entire Star Trek library. Be the first to know about the new game by signing up here .

"The Star Trek franchise has had an unmistakable influence on adults and children alike for over 50 years. Being able to bring such a storied franchise to mobile in our trademark idle-game style is an honour for us here at ESGG," said Darcy Taylor , Chief Executive Officer of ESGG. "We're looking forward to sharing this new experience in the Star Trek franchise with everyone from new audiences to Star Trek super fans. This new mobile game is another top tier IP franchise that will only add to an already exciting launch slate in 2022."

ABOUT East Side Games Group

East Side Games Group (formerly operating under the name "LEAF Mobile Inc.") is a leading free-to-play mobile game group, creating engaging games that produce enduring player loyalty. Our studio groups entrepreneurial culture is anchored in creativity, execution, and growth through licensing of our proprietary Game Kit software platform that enables professional game developers to greatly increase the efficiency and effectiveness of game creation in addition to organic growth through a diverse portfolio of original and licensed IP mobile games that include: Archer: Danger Phone, Bud Farm Idle Tycoon, Cheech & Chong Bud Farm , The Goldbergs: Back to the 80s, It's Always Sunny: The Gang Goes Mobile and Trailer Park Boys Grea$y Money , RuPaul's Drag Race Superstar and T he Office: Somehow We Manage .

We are headquartered in Vancouver, Canada and our games are available worldwide on the App Store and Google Play. For further information, please visit: www.eastsidegamesgroup.com and join our online communities at LinkedIn , Twitter , Facebook , and Instagram .

Additional information about the Company continues to be available under its legal name, LEAF Mobile Inc., at www.sedar.com .

ABOUT STAR TREK: LOWER DECKS

Developed by Emmy Award winner Mike McMahan ("Rick and Morty," "Solar Opposites"), STAR TREK: LOWER DECKS focuses on the support crew serving on one of Starfleet's least important ships, the U.S.S. Cerritos , in 2380. Ensigns Mariner, Boimler, Rutherford and Tendi have to keep up with their duties and their social lives, often while the ship is being rocked by a multitude of sci-fi anomalies. The Starfleet crew residing in the "lower decks" of the U.S.S. Cerritos , includes Ensign Beckett Mariner, voiced by Tawny Newsome , Ensign Brad Boimler , voiced by Jack Quaid , Ensign Tendi, voiced by Noël Wells, and Ensign Rutherford, voiced by Eugene Cordero . The Starfleet characters that comprise the ship's bridge crew include Captain Carol Freeman , voiced by Dawnn Lewis , Commander Jack Ransom , voiced by Jerry O'Connell , Doctor T'Ana, voiced by Gillian Vigman , Lt. Shaxs voiced by Fred Tatasciore , Lt. Billups voiced by Paul Scheer and Lt. Kayshon voiced by Carl Tart .

The series is produced by CBS' Eye Animation Productions, CBS Studios' new animation arm; Secret Hideout; and Roddenberry Entertainment. Secret Hideout's Alex Kurtzman and Heather Kadin , Roddenberry Entertainment's Rod Roddenberry and Trevor Roth , and Katie Krentz (219 Productions) serve as executive producers alongside creator and showrunner Mike McMahan . Aaron Baiers (Secret Hideout), who brought McMahan to the project, also serves as an executive producer. Titmouse ("Big Mouth"), the Emmy Award-winning independent animation production company, serves as the animation studio for the series.

STAR TREK: LOWER DECKS streams exclusively on Paramount+ in the U.S. and Latin America and is distributed concurrently by ViacomCBS Global Distribution Group on Amazon Prime Video in Australia , New Zealand , Europe , Japan , India and more and in Canada , airs on Bell Media's CTV Sci-Fi Channel and streams on Crave.

ABOUT VIACOMCBS CONSUMER PRODUCTS

ViacomCBS Consumer Products (VCP) oversees all licensing and merchandising for ViacomCBS Inc. (Nasdaq: VIACA, VIAC), a leading global media and entertainment company that creates premium content and experiences for audiences worldwide. Driven by iconic consumer brands, VCP's portfolio includes a diverse slate of brands and content from BET, CBS (including CBS Television Studios and CBS Television Distribution), Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Pictures and Showtime. With properties spanning animation, live-action, preschool, youth and adult, VCP is committed to creating the highest quality product for some of the world's most beloved, iconic franchises. Additionally, VCP oversees the online direct-to-consumer business for CBS and Showtime programming merchandise, as well as standalone branded ecommerce websites for Star Trek, SpongeBob, South Park, and MTV.

ABOUT MIGHTY KINGDOM LIMITED

Mighty Kingdom delights more than 7 million players every month and designs game experiences with the world's most recognised brands such as LEGO, Disney, Mattel, Funcom, Moose Toys, Spinmaster and more, as well as developing its own original games. Our portfolio of games is crafted from our Adelaide headquarters, with a diverse team of more than 140 developers from across Australia . Led by a desire to engage and delight players, we make exceptional experiences that connect our diverse talent with millions of people around the world. We make games with heart. We Love Fun. We want to share it with the world. We want you to be part of it.

Forward-looking Information

Certain statements in this release are forward-looking statements, which reflect the expectations of management regarding the proposed transactions described herein. Forward-looking statements consist of statements that are not purely historical, including any statements regarding beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions regarding the future. Such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results, performance or developments to differ materially from those contained in the statements. No assurance can be given that any of the events anticipated by the forward-looking statements will occur or, if they do occur, what benefits the Company will obtain from them. These forward-looking statements reflect management's current views and are based on certain expectations, estimates and assumptions which may prove to be incorrect. A number of risks and uncertainties could cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements, including factors beyond the Company's control. These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this news release.

SOURCE East Side Games Group

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