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Finstar PR Department
Crowdfund Insider, Posted August 9, 2023
Netbank and UBX have signed an agreement to issue loans to sellers on ecommerce platforms, and started to issue these loans. Netbank expects to rapidly “expand its lending to e-commerce sellers in the next year.”
Many sellers on e-commerce platforms “require additional working capital to expand their sales.” Few banks are willing “to work with these sellers, however, since they don’t have collateral.”
Netbank, by working with UBX’s lending platform SeekCap, is able “to gather detailed information on the sellers, which it can rely on for its underwriting.”
Finextra, Posted August 10, 2023
Citi, UBS and MUFG has joined a US$35 million funding round for Asian digital wealth management platform Endowus.
The banks joined the round through their venture arms and were joined by four Asian billionaire families.
Singapore-based Endowus spans both private wealth and public pension savings, helping investors grow their money with expert advice and access to institutional investment options.
Despite difficult financial market conditions, the firm has seen strong growth over the last year, with group assets now crossing US$5 billion. In 2022, it saw revenue growth of 80% organically, while tripling its group revenue as it completed the acquisition of multi-family office, Carret Private.
Gregory Van, CEO, Endowus, says: “The next stage of Endowus’ growth will hone in on the personalisation of a joyful and meaningful investing experience for all investors at scale.”
Finextra, Posted August 8, 2023
Singapore’s central bank is to commit up to $150 million to support startups developing innovative financial technologies over the next three years.
The funding is granted under the Financial Sector Technology and Innovation Scheme, an initiative to promote Singapore as a financial centre.
Prrevious iterations of the programme have led to the development of innovative projects such as the Singapore Financial Data Exchange, a cross-border payment linkage with Thailand, and initiatives to promote responsible AI, and sustainable finance.
The new funds will be allocated along three tracks, including: up to $2 million for corporate venture capital entities that are helping fintech startups to deveop viable business models; grants to help scale emerging technology projects such as Web 3.0; investment to support the development and deployment of projects that address ESG data, reporting, and analytics, with funding of up to $0.5 million per project.
Finextra, Posted August 7, 2023
Mastercard has introduced Cardholder Verification Code-less online payments for debit and credit cardholders in India who have tokenised their cards on merchant platforms.
According to the Reserve Bank of India’s guidelines, merchants who adopt tokenised payments will collect CVC only once.
After that, shoppers will be required to select their tokenised card from the checkout page, confirm the one-time password and complete the transaction without keying in the CVC.
E-commerce firms including Cashfree Payments and Zomato have already adopted CVC-less payments, which Mastercard says leads to higher authorisation rates, reduced checkout abandonment, and a better customer payment experience.
“Besides enhanced data security, CVC-less payments on tokenized cards come with benefits that make the online domestic card payment experience smoother and safer,” says Anubhav Gupta, SVP, South Asia, Mastercard.
Altfi, Posted August 9, 2023
European payments group Payabl has acquired a UK Electronic Money Institution (EMI) license.
Founded in 2011, Payabl operates across Europe with offices in Germany, Netherlands, Cyprus, and the UK but has been operating in the latter under the FCA’s Temporary Permission Regime.
The company says it will now focus on expanding its team to support its growth plan as well as the expansion of its merchant portfolio.
“Being an authorised EMI provides us with a robust regulatory framework that’ll allow us to support UK merchants and allowing them to thrive, as we have been doing for merchants across Europe,” Sean Forward, Payabl’s UK CEO said. “The next step for us will be to grow our UK team, increasing our pool of talented payment professionals to support our growth ambitions, as well as guiding our existing customers who already operate in Europe as they expand their presence in the UK,” he added.
The Paypers, Posted August 10, 2023
UK-based digital lending marketplace Freedom Finance has added personal loans from Reevo Money to its lending panel.
Through this partnership, Reevo Money’s personal loan products will be accessible through Freedom Finance’s network of partners as well as directly through its consumer-oriented marketplace.
Freedom Finance currently maintains an extensive array of lending partners as it works with UK brands such as Creation Marketplace, Asda Money, and RAC. In essence, this recent collaboration with Reevo Money aims to provide enhanced choices for customers seeking loan options. Prospective borrowers eligible for these personal loans will have the opportunity to secure amounts ranging from GBP 1,000 to GBP 7,000, repayable over terms spanning 12 to 36 months.
Finextra, Posted August 9, 2023
The UK Government is to explore the use of open banking driven digital payments for public services.
In a blog post, Amanda Dahl, the deputy director of Government Digital Services, outlined the plans as part of a wider programme of deliverig new functionality for the payment of Government services.
This includes extending the use of GOV.UK Pay – which already offers Apple Pay and Google Pay for central government digital services – to local authority services for people who are paying for government services on the go, like paying for Clean Air Zone charges.
On the move to a common cross-government open banking platform, she says: “Later this year we’ll also be investigating how GOV.UK Pay might offer open banking, which means that people will have the option to pay for services conveniently using their own banking app.”
Finextra, Posted August 3, 2023
Pockit, a UK fintech that provides financial services to low-income and underserved customers, has raised $10 million in a growth round led by Puma Private Equity.
Having started life as a prepaid card, Pockit now allows anyone – including the 20.2 million people across the UK who it says can’t access basic financial services – to open a current account in minutes.
Users can send and receive money internationally, set up direct debits, deposit and withdraw cash in 27,000 stores across the UK, make online and in-store purchases, and get an advance on their salary. The app also has a credit building feature and budgeting tools, as well as cashback rewards and customer perks.
With an 800,000-strong userbase, the company is stressing its value to people hit by the current cost-of-living crisis where one in seven families is going without essentials and a almost a third of the population can’t access basic services.
The new funding will be used to grow Pockit’s customer base and diversify its product suite, while the firm also has ambitions to expand beyond the UK.
Finextra, Posted August 1, 2023
Buy now, pay later giant Klarna has killed off its open banking brand Klarna Kosma a little over a year after launch, although the business will continue to operate as before. Klarna first entered the open banking space when it acquired Sofort, a direct bank-to-bank payment service in Germany, in 2014. Since then the Swedish giant has developed the service, expanding it into dozens of markets, and begun to use open banking to power additional in-house services.
Last April, the Swedish firm decided to introduce a separate brand, Klarna Kosma, offering financial institutions, fintechs and merchants the connectivity to build FS apps and services by providing simple and secure access to 15,000 banks in 24 countries through a single API.
However, as first reported by Tech.eu, the brand is now being scrapped with the business being folded under the main Klarna corporate brand
Altfi, Posted August 7, 2023
Payments giant PayPal has launched a stablecoin dubbed PYUSD to accelerate its push into digital and web3 payments.
PayPal’s users will now be able to transfer funds into PYUSD and then send them on to external wallets and major exchanges as well as send them directly to other users or pay for goods.
“PayPal USD is designed to reduce friction for in-experience payments in virtual environments, facilitate fast transfers of value to support friends and family, send remittances or conduct international payments, enable direct flows to developers and creators, and foster the continued expansion into digital assets by the largest brands in the world,” the company said in a statement.
PYUSD will also act as a type of ‘bridge’ between other cryptocurrencies, with PayPal able to charge fees to users.
Crowdfund Insider, Posted August 27, 2023
Visa Inc. CB International Bank (CBiBank) announce the launching of an innovative cross-border B2B payments solution for businesses worldwide.
CBiBank has officially “joined the Visa B2B Connect platform, ushering in a new era of faster, more cost-effective, and secure B2B payment services.”
Visa B2B Connect, Visa’s global payments platform, “combines the vast resources of a traditional financial institution with the agility of innovative Fintech solutions.”
Built upon Visa’s extensive global network and fortified by advanced security technology, Visa B2B Connect empowers businesses “to seamlessly authenticate and manage cross-border B2B payments.” By offering real-time visibility, expedited payment processing, and robust monitoring capabilities, the platform “sets new standards for efficiency, transparency, and security.”
Finextra, Posted August 9, 2023
Microsoft has teamed up with Aptos Labs on an effort to combine the power of AI and the blockchain to drive web3 into the mainstream. Aptos says that, despite much hype, web3 adoption has been stymied by the time-consuming and complex nature of onboarding new users.
The layer 1 blockchain developer is tapping the Microsoft Azure OpenAI service to develop an assistant which aims to offer a responsible, user-friendly and secure way to bridge web2 to web3 for the everyday internet user and organisation.
Aptos Assistant will enable users to seamlessly onboard into web3 by asking any kind of question regarding the Aptos blockchain ecosystem using natural language. It will also be available to guide developers as they build smart contracts and decentralised apps.
Fintech Futures, Posted August 10, 2023
US-based fintech Greenlight, which operates a family banking app, has launched a new credit builder for teenagers to help them build credit before turning 18.
Citing a survey result, Greenlight says 84% of teenagers between the ages of 18 and 19 have zero credit history, limiting their opportunities to get their first job, or buy a car and a home.
Additionally, Greenlight’s research suggests that parents want their kids to learn about credit, but don’t have access to tools and resources, while teens are “stressed” about money and want more financial education.
Using the Greenlight Family Cash Card, a credit card which offers up to 3% cashback, Greenlight says parents can add their teenagers as authorised users of the card to start building and managing credit. The card is available with all of Greenlight’s subscription plans, which start at $4.99 a month.
Fintech Futures, Posted August 7, 2023
San Francisco-based payments company Block is to shutter some of its European business operations in favour of “areas that have a higher potential return on investment”.
The closures are to extend to its peer-to-peer (P2P) payment app Verse in the European Union and its buy now, pay later (BNPL) platform Clearpay, which is to cease operations in Italy, France and Spain.
A note on the Verse website reads that the app will remain available until 13 September, at which point it will be deactivated and removed from app stores and devices.
Block’s founder and CEO Jack Dorsey, former CEO and co-founder of Twitter, confirmed the news during the company’s Q2 2023 earnings call this month.
He said the two businesses required “significant investment” but that both had ultimately failed to generate the profitability that Block was expecting.
Crowdfund Insider, Posted August 9, 2023
Nu officially inaugurated its new office spaces in Mexico City.
With a sprawling space of over 5,000 m² in the Polanco neighborhood, Nu provides a workspace “for more than 1,200 Nubankers who work in a hybrid schedule, alternating between weeks of in-person and remote work based on the needs and preferences of each team.”
Since arriving in the country in 2019, Nu has “invested over $1.3 billion in the operation, with a Social Capital surpassing 12 billion Mexican pesos and a Capitalization Level exceeding 500%, four times above the minimum requirement of 131%.”
Additionally, Nu Holdings is “one of the most highly capitalized companies in the region, with over $2.4 billion in excess cash.” With more than 3.2 million customers “using their credit card and over a million customers with the Cuenta Nu and debit card just weeks after the official launch, Nu is in a robust position to continue revolutionizing personal finance for people in Mexico.”
Crowdfund Insider, Posted August 8, 2023
albo, a neobank in Mexico, has announced its acquisition of delt.ai for $20 million.
With this strategic acquisition, albo has “strengthened its position in Mexico’s financial services sector, becoming the only neobank to offer debit and credit products for both consumers and SMBs.”
This is in addition to its existing portfolio, “including commission-free debit and savings accounts, personal loans, cash advances, crypto trading, management tools, and other services.”
albo acquired delt.ai for $20 million, “becoming the only neobank in Mexico with credit and debit products for consumers.”
Altfi, Posted August 7, 2023
Thought Machine is expanding into Latin America with its latest client, private debt platform Cordada.
The Chilean company, which provides solutions for fintechs and lenders serving SMEs in Latin America, will use Thought Machine’s cloud-native core banking platform ‘Vault Core’ to create personalised financial products.
Currently operating in Chile, Peru and Mexico, it plans to use Thought Machine’s Vault platform to expand to new markets in Latin America and to expand its suite of lending solutions.
“Vault Core will enable us to create highly differentiated financing products quickly and effortlessly without depending on the Thought Machine team,” Cordada co-founder and CEO Andrés Prats said.
“This, in turn, will empower the next generation of SME lenders to develop modern solutions as they tackle the great challenge of bridging the $1trn financing gap for SMEs in Latin America.”
The Paypers, Posted August 9, 2023
Data, analytics, and technology company Equifax has announced that it completed the acquisition of Brazil-based credit bureau Boa Vista Serviços.
The strategic acquisition seeks to grow Equifax’s presence in Brazil and provide Boa Vista’s customers with access to expansive Equifax international capabilities and cloud-native solutions.
Based on the information detailed in the press release, Equifax acquired Boa Vista Serviços for R$8.00 per share, implying an estimated total enterprise value of R$3.1 billion (USD 640 million) based on a USD/BRL exchange rate of 8080 (PTAX as of August 2, 2023). Equifax owns 80% of Equifax Brasil, with Associação Comercial de São Paulo (“ACSP”) and certain other former Boa Vista Serviços shareholders holding the remaining 20%.
The Paypers, Posted August 7, 2023
Cordada, a Latam-based private debt platform catering to lenders and fintechs that serve SMEs, has partnered with Thought Machine to close the funding gap for SMEs in Latin America.
With this partnership, Cordada will make use of Thought Machine’s cloud-native core banking platform, known as Vault Core. This integration is intended to develop personalised financial products for SME lenders and fintechs across the Latin American region. Moreover, Cordada will use Vault Core as SaaS hosted on the Google Cloud Platform (GCP).
An aspect of this integration involves migrating Cordada’s existing products and services onto Vault Core and leveraging the technology to design, test, and deliver high-quality financial products. This is expected to help lenders of various sizes to fund the growth of the next generation of SMEs. Cordada currently operates in Chile, Peru as well as Mexico, and with the use of Vault Core, the company is expected to be able to expand its reach and services into new Latin American markets.
Finextra, Posted August 11, 2023
Revolut is offering Revolut Lite in Latin American countries to make cross-border transactions and transfers more accessible to the unbanked.
Revolut Lite will provide users with free transfers as a taster of the online banking experience until 30th August. This is currently operational in Chile. The payments giant aims to further expand into the region with plans to set up in Argentina and Ecuador through Lite, having already launched in Brazil this May with a cryptocurrency platform. Revolut Lite is also live outside Latin America, in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Sri Lanka, Moldova, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Armenia, Macao, and Azerbaijan.
Current users in Chile have transferred £1.2 million, with an average transaction amount of £800.
The company’s LATAM expansion will also support the large expat communities that use the app in Spain and Portugal to send money home. Revolut has nearly three million customers in Spain and Portugal, and both have significant South American expat communities that require remittance services, , a substantial opportunity for Revolut.
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Finstar PR Department