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.
Investors made a bee-line for the stock of Russian technology giant Yandex (NASDAQ: YNDX) after it bid Tuesday for Tinkoff, a leading online bank in the country. Yandex shares touched a record high after analysts and investors apparently thought it was a marriage made in heaven.
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According to an exclusive report today by Reuters, Robinhood Markets Inc. the trading app so popular with millennials, raised $660 million in its latest Series G funding round. Robinhood previously announced its Series G funding with a $200 million investment by D1 Capital Partners. A company spokeswoman told Reuters Tuesday that the round was expanded to $660 million at a valuation of $11.7 billion.
Triterras Fintech launched its Kratos blockchain-enabled, end-to-end global trade and trade finance platform in June 2019 with the Trade Discovery module. In February 2020, Triterras added the Trade Finance module to Kratos. Triterras has already handled about $5 billion of trade finance on Kratos over the six months ended August 31, 2020.
Glint customers can use their mobile phones and the Glint app with its new Glint It! Feature to instantly send or receive gold or other currencies to their fellow Glint users. The person-to-person (P2P) service currently transacts gold, Euros, GBP, and USD.
Paytm, a major Indian payment app and fintech, said Friday that its app had been pulled from the Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL) Play Store because its recently launched “Paytm Cricket League” was allegedly violating policies regarding gambling. On Sunday, Paytm hit back with a strongly worded, and a detailed, blog post on the fracas. It alleged that Google arm-twisted the company to remove a UPI cashback scheme.
Affirm announced Thursday its raise of $500 million in a G Round led by GIC and Durable Capital Partners LP. Other investors included Lightspeed Venture Partners, Wellington Management Company, Baillie Gifford, Spark Capital, Founders Fund, and Fidelity Management & Research Company LLC.
The State of Wyoming greenlighted Kraken’s application to form the world’s first Special Purpose Depository Institution (SPDI).
Kraken Financial, the new entity, can operate as a fully independent bank and is the first digital asset company in the U.S. to receive a bank charter recognized under both federal and state laws. As an SPDI, it can offer the full range of deposit-taking, custody, and fiduciary services for digital assets in a fully regulated manner.
Nationwide payments firms now have to undergo a single comprehensive exam to effectively satisfy all states’ regulatory compliance requirements. The Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS) announced Tuesday its “MSB Networked Supervision” initiative in this regard, effective 2021.
Jetty, which describes itself as a modern security deposit alternative, has expanded its services for renters. Its newly launched Unlock Deposit offering frees up renters’ cash deposits in exchange for a small one time or monthly fee.
Buy Now Pay Monthly. According to a report in The Fintech Times, Standard Chartered Bank and Amazon’s United Arab Emirates (UAE) website, Amazon.ae, are now offering installment payment plans to shoppers. Credit cardholders of Standard Chartered Bank can now convert their Amazon purchases into payment through installments up to 12 months.
General Atlantic led a $200 million funding round for Uruguay-based cross-border payment processor dLocal, catapulting the latter into the hallowed, three-comma-club. dLocal became Latin America’s latest unicorn and Uruguay’s first. New investor Addition also participated in the fundraising.
A team of marquee investors, led by Silver Lake, invested $650 million in Klarna, the payments and shopping service known for its “buy-now-pay-later” (BNPL) offering. Klarna now ranks as the biggest fintech unicorn in Europe, and fourth globally, after the round valued it at $10.65 billion.
M1 Finance, which calls itself the “Finance Super App,” announced September 9 that it had achieved the $2 billion landmark in assets managed on its platform. It did this within just six months after hitting the $1 billion asset mark in late February 2020.
National Australia Bank (ASX: NAB) has launched, StraightUp, the country’s first interest-free credit card as “Buy Now Pay Later,” or BNPL, schemes become increasingly popular with shoppers.
REINNO intends to disrupt commercial real estate investing by breaking down the financial barriers which limit entry to the small guy. REINNO’s platform offers tokenization of real estate, loans against tokenized real estate, and a marketplace for property owners to list the token offerings. It announced Thursday the launch of its marketplace for tokenized commercial real estate with five offerings worth over $ 237 million.
As central banks navigate the feasibility of their CBDC projects through uncharted territory, Mastercard has unveiled a proprietary virtual testing environment for them to evaluate CBDC use cases.
Cash is still king among India’s millions of banking unserved, residing predominantly in the country’s vast rural areas. Fintech RapiPay, therefore, plans to deploy 500K of its micro-ATMs over the next two years at small businesses. These devices, which look like a calculator, enable consumers to conduct basic banking services including cash withdrawals.
According to a Reuters Exclusive, Klarna, the Swedish fintech and unicorn, is talking with investors to raise as much as $ 500 million at a valuation of $ 10 billion. During its previous fundraise in August 2019, Klarna raised $ 460 million at a post-money valuation of $ 5.5 billion. Reuters’ sources said the money would be raised from both existing and new investors. An announcement is likely within days, they said.
According to a Reuters Exclusive report, Grab, which has evolved from being a ride-hailing cab operator to a multi-business conglomerate, is looking for funding in the range of $300 million to $500 million. Reuters’ sources said the company is in advanced talks with investors such as Prudential plc (LON: PRU), AIA Group Ltd (HKG: 1299) and others.
Jiko, the four-year-old upstart fintech, and digital bank, which has all of just 23 employees, appears to have pulled off the impossible. It acquired Mid Central National Bank, a 63-year old retail bank based in Minnesota, becoming the first fintech to complete the acquisition of a nationally regulated bank in the U.S.
According to an announcement Wednesday, digital challenger bank Revolut has enhanced the scope of crypto trading for its customers in the US. It has added Bitcoin Cash and LiteCoin to its range of cryptocurrencies that customers can buy sell or hold.
Sezzle Inc (ASX: SZL), the buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) platform, announced Wednesday that its customers can now use the Sezzle Virtual Card to convert their purchases at brick-and-mortar stores into easy installments. They may also use the Card online.
Neon Pagamentos, a leading Brazilian fintech, has received a Series C investment of $300 million led by General Atlantic. New investors participated in the round, too. These included funds and accounts managed by BlackRock (NYSE: BLK), as well as Vulcan Capital, PayPal Ventures, and Endeavor Catalyst. Existing investors Monashees and Flourish Ventures also took part in the funding, while BBVA participated through existing shareholder Propel Venture Partners.
Plaid is the fintech famous for its API that connects customers and their apps with their bank accounts. It is also the fintech for which Visa (NYSE: V) paid an acquisition price of $5.3 billion. Plaid announced Tuesday in a blog post that it was upgrading its Plaid Exchange service, which debuted in May. Banks and financial institutions, as well as their fintech partners, which use the service, can now provide real-time updates to their customers.