Payment fintechs persist despite economic upheaval.

From taking restaurant orders to enabling corporate bill-payment, fintechs have been sprouting up all over the business landscape in recent years to capitalize on making payments easier and more efficient. 

While the deadly coronavirus fed that trend by forcing consumers to shop online and businesses to operate remotely, the shift to digital payment alternatives is slowing as companies and consumers grapple with economic headwinds, including higher interest rates, inflation and supply constraints. 

Now, investors are demanding profits from young fintechs, and being stingier with their dollars. Under the increased pressure, some fintechs have reduced their goals, including at payment pioneer PayPal and checkout startup Bolt, while others, such former rival Fast, have shuttered.

On the whole, payment fintechs have persisted because the sea change favoring alternative digital channels shows no signs of reversing. For instance, the restaurant payments fintech SpotOn raised $300 million last month. And business-to-business payments player Billtrust said it remains determined to pursue acquisitions.

Big fintechs have underscored the momentum by adding payment services, features and tools, including Apple’s decision to jump on buy now-pay later financing and BNPL contenders Klarna and Affirm both introducing debit cards. Such moves will keep the expanding universe of fintechs on their toes as competition grows too.

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