Venture capital firms aren't the only active investors in fintech. Behind the bigger investment rounds and the minting of new unicorns, big technology firms are playing an increasingly important role in ramping today's top fintech firms.
New research from CB Insights shows Google Ventures is the most active big tech investor in fintech. Since 2016, Google Ventures has made 45 investments in firms like Stripe and Oscar. Along with Andreessen Horowitz, General Catalyst, and Sequoia Capital, Google invested in Stripe's $600 million round in April of 2020, for example. It also participated in digital health insurance firm Oscar's $400 million round in 2016.
For its part, Apple bought Mobeewave in 2020, a tech firm that allows phones to securely receive payment transactions made with contactless cards and wallets. By incorporating Mobeewave’s features into Apple Pay, Apple can offer quick payments and transfers without any other app or platform. Along with growth in the Apple Card business, this acquisition positions the firm to compete more directly in consumer and merchant payments.
Facebook and Google are both pursuing investment strategies to bolster their payments capabilities. As Google moves into banking with the introduction of its bank accounts in 2021, Google Pay will become the hub for the big tech firm's fintech activities. With 150 million monthly users in 150 countries, Google will have a foothold in all kinds of payments, personal finance, banking, and shopping deals.