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FinTech

Digital payments alone could become a $100 trillion industry, according to PwC. And that’s just one component of the global Fintech industry. This channel tackles the lenders and buyers, the obstacles and achievements, and the trends and trend makers leading the ongoing technological evolution in global finance.

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Venture Capital: UK Fintech Curve Eyeing Fundraise Between £100m and £120m

August 3, 2020

Sifted revealed that London-based fintech Curve may raise an amount upwards of £100 million in a proposed Series C round. It reportedly started its efforts to raise money earlier this year and if the efforts pay off, it could be one of the biggest raises by a fintech in Europe this year amidst the pandemic.

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FinTech: Apple Acquires Mobeewave To Extend Payments Functionality

August 3, 2020

Mobeewave, a Canadian tech startup that aims to convert smartphones into payment terminals, has been acquired by Apple Inc (NASDAQ: AAPL) for $100 million, according to Bloomberg.
The Mobeewave startup makes it easy for shoppers to use their credit cards and make payments using their smartphones. The firm will continue to function out of its Old Montreal location with all employees being retained by Apple.

FinTech: Monzo Reports A Whopper Of A Loss; Casts Doubt On Its Own Future

July 31, 2020

Monzo reported a loss of £113.8 million ($149.5 million) in its 2020 fiscal accounts, up from the £47.1 million loss in 2019. However, revenues more than tripled to £67.2 million from £19.7 million. The bank made sizable investments on hiring, marketing and a U.S. expansion during the year.
The bank warned that the disruption from the coronavirus pandemic had cast in doubt its ability to continue to operate.

FinTech: Seattle Mints Its Second Unicorn This Month in Remitly

July 30, 2020

Immigrant focused remittance fintech Remitly announced Wednesday that it raised $85 million in a Series F round led by existing investor Prosus’s PayU. Generation Investment Management, Owl Rock Capital, Stripes, DN Capital, Top Tier, Princeville Global, and Threshold Ventures also participated.

FinTech: Marqeta to Power JP Morgan’s Virtual Cards Program

July 29, 2020

Marqeta, a global card issuing platform, will provide its card tokenization capabilities to JPMorgan Chase’s (NYSE: JPM) virtual card program in 2021. The bank would, therefore, be able to issue its virtual cards into the mobile wallets of its commercial card clients.

FinTech: Buy-Now-Pay-Later Platform Sezzle Teams With Plaid

July 28, 2020

Sezzle, a fintech that offers interest-free installment purchase plans to 1.4 million consumers at online stores and physical locations, has tied up with Plaid. Sezzle’s customers can now connect (via Plaid) their financial accounts maintained with the traditional banks to the Sezzle platform.

FinTech: Revolut Scoops Up Another $80M in the February Series D

July 27, 2020

It’s as if the pandemic never happened for Revolut, the UK-based challenger bank and fintech. It just got another $80 million in its Series D kitty from TSG Consumer Partners, the private equity company focused on consumer product companies and running an AUM of $5 billion. TSG’s investment was made at the same Round D valuation of $5.5 billion struck in February. That valuation tripled from its previous one of $1.7 billion in April 2018.

FinTech: Amazon Now Selling Auto and Bike Insurance in India

July 24, 2020

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) announced Thursday that its Amazon Pay service had begun to offer two and four-wheeler insurance policies in India, in partnership with Acko General Insurance Ltd.

FinTech: Affirm and Shopify Tie Up To Offer Shopping on Installments

July 23, 2020

Online shoppers will soon have access to a new credit facility courtesy of Affirm, the credit startup run by PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) co-founder Max Levchin, and eCommerce giant Shopify (NYSE: SHOP). Best of all, the program, dubbed Shop Pay Installments, will be interest-free as well as zero-fee. Shopify merchants in the U.S. that want to offer a BNPL facility to their customers may opt for Affirm’s solution.

FinTech: Hippo, The Home Insurance Unicorn, Raises $150M

July 22, 2020

Insurtech startup Hippo, which specializes in digital insurance of homes and possessions, announced Tuesday its successful Series E funding of $150 million. The round valued Hippo at $1.5 billion post-money. Its aggregate funding since its launch in 2015 is $359 million.

FinTech: Indian Insurance Marketplace PolicyBazaar Plans $500M IPO

July 21, 2020

Yashish Dahiya, the co-founder of online Indian insurance platform PolicyBazaar, has big financing plans for it. In the coming weeks he hopes to raise $250 million of pre-IPO financing at a likely valuation of $2 billion. That will be followed by an IPO sized $500 million in September 2021. Dahiya said there was global interest in the funding round, likely to close in the coming weeks.

FinTech: Irate Users Haul Plaid To Court on Alleged Privacy Violations

July 20, 2020

Two class-action suits, both filed within the space of a month, charge Plaid, the fintech that sold to Visa (NYSE: V) for $5.3 billion in January, violated their data privacy.

FinTech: Facebook’s Instagram Launches Revamped Shopping Option in the U.S.

July 17, 2020

Facebook’s (NASDAQ: FB) Instagram has just made it even easier for shopaholic couch potatoes to indulge in online retail therapy! On Thursday Instagram launched its new Instagram Shop, an online bazaar containing collections of personalized products, brands and new launches. Special curations from its social shopping channel @shop will also be on display.

FinTech: Revolut is Crypto Brokerage Paxos’ First US Client

July 16, 2020

British challenger bank Revolut has opened up the world of cryptocurrencies to its US customers. Users in 49 American states, except Tennessee, and are now able to buy and sell bitcoin and ethereum through Revolut. Revolut launched its banking services in the US in March and has now tied up with Paxos Trust Company for its Paxos Crypto Brokerage service.

FinTech: View From The Top – Matthew Blake, World Economic Forum

July 15, 2020

Matthew Blake is Head of Financial and Monetary Systems at the World Economic Forum (WEF). He is also at the forefront of the WEF for matters relating to fintech. He recently spoke to Crowdfund Insider on the industry, COVID-19 and its future outlook.

FinTech: Robinhood, the Fee-Free Trading App, Raises $320M At $8.6B Valuation

July 14, 2020

Nothing, it seems, can stand in the way of Robinhood’s cash chase. COVID-19 notwithstanding, the share trading and investment platform announced and raised in May an ‘F’ funding of $280 million. That round got rounded up nicely to $600 million Monday after Robinhood announced its expansion and raise of an additional $320 million. Investors in Monday’s tranche included TSG Consumer Partners and IVP.

FinTech: “Massive Opportunity for Disruptors” and “The Biggest VC Exits” – Steve Sloane

July 13, 2020

Fintech presents a treasure trove of opportunities for disruptors. Steve Sloane, who is a partner at Menlo Ventures and runs the firm’s “Inflection Fund,” shared his vision for the fintech sector in an article.

FinTech: Online Lender and Fintech SoFi Refiles For A National Bank Charter

July 10, 2020

SoFi becomes one more fintech looking to crossover into mainstream banking after it filed a de novo application with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) for a national bank charter. According to American Banker, which cited a SoFi spokesperson, the fintech applied on Wednesday, though a copy of the charter application was not available till Thursday.

FinTech: Ant Group, the Fintech Arm of Alibaba, To Float Hong Kong IPO

July 9, 2020

Chinese fintech giant Ant Group, also known as the world’s most valuable unicorn, and previously called Ant Financial, is planning an IPO said Reuters. The news service quoted anonymous sources who also confirmed that Ant had been working with advisors on the sale of shares in recent months.

FinTech: Malaysian Company MFMi Group To Launch Digital Islamic Banking Using Mambu’s Platform

July 8, 2020

MFMi Group, a unit of Malaysian fintech MFM Synergy, announced its intention to launch digital Islamic financial services choosing Mambu’s SaaS, cloud-native banking platform. The initiative aims to enhance financial inclusion for Malaysia’s underserved consumers.

FinTech: Digital Payment Company Square To Give Banks A Run for their Deposits – Analyst

July 7, 2020

San Francisco-based Square Inc (NYSE: SQ), a digital payment processor led by Jack Dorsey, benefited Monday from a highly bullish report by SunTrust analyst Andrew Jeffrey. The stock touched an all-time high of $ 128.36 after the analyst wrote that it could take away direct deposits from banks and ultimately sit on a market share of 20%. Square’s market capitalisation, based on Monday’s close, is $ 52.27 billion. According to a Bloomberg report Square now has a market capitalisation higher than all but four banks in the KBW Bank index.

Fintech: Indonesian, Agent-Driven Banking Network PAYFAZZ Raises $53 Million

July 6, 2020

PAYFAZZ, an Indonesian fintech start-up, scooped up $ 53 million in a Series B funding round led by B Capital Group and Insignia Ventures Partners. Existing investors Tiger Global Management, Y Combinator, ACE & Company, and Quiet Capital also participated in the funding. New investors included BRI Ventures.

FinTech: Branchless Bank Chime Offers A Credit Card That Doesn’t Allow You To Get Into Debt

July 2, 2020

A study by the U.S. Fed found that around half of all non-cash transactions in the U.S. in 2018 were conducted using a debit card. Neo-bank Chime found from its own survey that younger customers tend to prefer to use debit cards. Nearly 67% of the survey respondents from the demographic class known as millennials said debit cards are better for their security and inbuilt cap on overspending. These customers did not want to be saddled with debts that they would struggle to repay. Chime has now introduced the Chime Credit Builder Visa Credit Card, a kind of hybrid between a credit and debit card.

FinTech: WhatsApp Overcomes Antitrust Hurdle to its Brazilian Payment Service

July 1, 2020

CADE, Brazil’s antitrust regulator, has lifted its embargo on the payments service launched recently by WhatsApp, the messaging service owned by Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) in partnership with Brazilian card processor Cielo SA. It said that clarifications provided by the two companies appeared to confirm that their deal does not limit the entry of rivals nor does it reduce consumers’ choice.

Venture Capital: Banking-as-a-Service Provider solarisBank Scores $67.5M

June 30, 2020

solarisBank raised €60 million ($67.5 million) in a series C round led by HV Holtzbrinck Ventures, and supported by founding investor yabeo. New investors coming on board are Vulcan Capital, Samsung Catalyst Fund and Storm Ventures. Existing investors who participated included BBVA, SBI Group, ABN AMRO Ventures, Global Brain, Hegus and Lakestar.