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.
Neobank YAP has launched the U.A.E’s first digital banking platform. Applicants on a waiting list, numbering over 25,000, can hope to get a bank account, a YAP Mastercard Debit Card, and an app that provides spending analytics. It also offers means to transfer money and pay bills, and real-time notifications of purchases, withdrawals, and transfers.
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Coronavirus-related market volatility lent a huge boost to the lending activity of crypto lender dYdX. About 70% of the total amount of $ 1.14 billion which it lent over the past 12 months was borrowed during the virus-stricken months of February and March.
Fintechs are disappointed with the limited role they have played in getting Paycheck Protection Program loans into the hands of the smaller businesses. The first tranche of $349 billion in potentially forgivable loans meant for small businesses across the country was fully disbursed within just two weeks. Even though Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin had promised fintechs a role in paying out these loans, the Small Business Administration (SBA) only allowed traditional banks to make these loans by the time the money ran out.
SoFi, the fintech that describes itself as the digital personal finance company, launches SoFi Invest in Hong Kong. The SoFi Invest platform will offer brokerage, automated investing and ETFs with the added benefit of commission-free trading. For Hong Kong, the platform will be a simplified mobile experience and also offer financial advice and education.
Moven announced last month plans to focus completely on the enterprise side of its business. It pulled the plug on its consumer banking unit after the coronavirus put paid to financing plans. Moven planned to close customer accounts by April 30. It now transpires that digital banking challenger Varo Money will take over these accounts.
In its largest funding round yet, California-based payment platform Stripe announced that it raised $600 million in an extension of its $250 million series G funding round. The unicorn said it intended to use the new money to expand its workforce, advance its software, make strategic acquisitions and expand across the globe.
Online brokerage Robinhood, which has recently been in the news for repeated system outages, is said to be raising $250 million from investors led by Sequoia Capital. Bloomberg, which broke the news of the funding, quoted sources who requested to remain anonymous. However, Bloomberg said it had received no confirmation from either Robinhood or Sequoia on the deal.
iProov is a three-time winner of Finovate Best of Show. It is bringing a version of its renowned mobile identify verification app to laptops/PCs. According to data, consumers still prefer to use desktops and laptops for larger purchases. In 2019, web usage accounted for more than half of online revenue but only 37% of web traffic.
The new report from the World Bank focuses on new digital technologies, particularly fintech.
The report “payment aspects of financial inclusion in the fintech era,” discusses the opportunities and challenges that come with using fintech to promote financial inclusion. Issued by the Committee on Payments and Market Infrastructures (CPMI) and the World Bank, the report connects fintech innovation with financial inclusion.
TransferWise, the London-based fintech, is “building the best way to move money around the world.” It tweeted last week: “Making fast the new normal: 25% of TransferWise’s payments today are instant – but all consumers should benefit from instant payments.”
As healthcare providers and patients reel from the COVID-19 crisis, Wellpay steps up to help.
Fresh from a raising of $3.8 million from lead investors 8vc, Mubadala Capital-Ventures, Montage Ventures, TTCER, and Advisors.fund, healthcare fintech Wellpay has accelerated the launch of its platform.
Non-bank Lenders may not take part in the funding process for small businesses provided by the Small Business Administration.
The $349 billion loan program put in place to help small businesses survive the current economic shut down caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The Small Business Administration has been reaching out to banks and lenders to service the PPP loans.
Finastra, a maker of banking software used by 90 of the world’s 100 largest banks, fell victim to a hacking attack in mid-March. The cybercriminals timed their attack when the fintech had its hands full with the COVID-19 pandemic and most of its employees were working from home. By stealing employee passwords they gained access to critical Finastra servers and installed backdoors in them.
It’s the third big one in the fintech space within a space of barely four months. In January, Visa (NYSE: V) acquired Plaid for $5.3 billion, followed by Intuit (NASDAQ: INTU) paying $7.1 billion for Credit Karma in February. In the current deal, personal finance company SoFi is buying up Galileo, a Utah-based financial services API and payments platform, for $1.2 billion in cash and stock. Accel, an investor in Galileo, has reportedly romped home with 4X returns.
Kabbage, the aggressive fintech that focuses on small business lending, announced it will collaborate with a technology-enabled bank and authorized lender of the Small Business Administration (SBA) to pay out Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans. Kabbage did not name the lender but said an announcement from the bank would follow.
. Online personal finance start-up SoFi has agreed to buy payments software company Galileo for $1.2 billion. The deal is a combination of cash and stock, according to the press release announcing the deal today. SoFi and Galileo Galileo’s digital payments platform enables critical checking and savings account-like functionality via its powerful open APIs, providing…
Yapily, a fintech startup that offers an open banking API, raised $13 million in a Series A round despite swirling panic around the coronavirus. The round was led by Lakestar, which also funded Revolut, Skype, Spotify, Airbnb and Facebook (NASDAQ: FB).
deVere Group released a report last week that found that the use of fintech apps in Europe grew by 72% in just a week.
The Swiss-based consulting firm said large parts of Europe closed down under quarantine orders. Therefore, consumers turned to mobile and online apps to conduct their personal banking needs and to conduct business. The coronavirus pandemic is likely to cause a global acceleration of fintech usage and product development going forward.
The digital challenger bank, the largest of its kind in the U.S., stands ready to pay out the stimulus cheques of $1,200 each. In a test run, it randomly chose 1,000 of its clients who met certain criteria with immediate access to $1,200 of spending power through SpotMe while they waited for their government stimulus payment. SpotMe is the firm’s free alternative to bank overdrafts.
One of the clear winners, if there is such a thing of the current economic situation, will be fintech companies. And we can expect to see a wave of fintech M&A as a result. There was already a trend towards digital platforms in the financial services industry. Now it’s just accelerating. Even those who prefer…
Revolut is now opening up crypto trading to all 10 million of its users. The facility was previously available only to its Premium and Metals classified customers. Standard users may trade cryptos at a flat fee of 1.5% per trade. However, with effect from May, the fee will rise to 2.5%.
Some small business customers of Kabbage received an unpleasant surprise this past week when they found their credit line had been abruptly cut to zero. “This is very bad business ethics,” complained one distraught customer to Bloomberg. “You just turn it off without saying a word — not an email, not a phone call, nothing.”
Kyash, a Japanese fintech startup aspiring to be a leading challenger bank, gained $45 million in a Series C funding. The round was co-led by Greenspring Associates and Goodwater Capital, a global consumer technology investor along with several venture capital firms from around the world.
The startup will use the funds to accelerate its full-stack mobile banking business in Japan, as well as to advance its overall growth strategy and business domain expansion, mainly into the banking space.
One is the new digital banking app launched by Bill Harris, the former CEO at PayPal and Intuit. It is a digital banking start-up that promises “One app. One card. One account.” It intends to deliver full-service banking via one simple account allowing users to save, spend, share, and borrow. It focuses on middle-income families across the United States. Currently in beta mode, One will likely launch during summer this year. It has chosen Finxact to power its banking services.
The world is adapting to unforeseen lockdowns and social distancing by using more digital technology. As people spend more time indoors, the demand for online services is exploding. But, the virus may accelerate, and perpetuate, digital trends that may already have been taking shape in our lives.