FinTech Daily News – Soft launch Edition #26, 29.06.2017
June 29, 2017
FinTech Daily News – Edition 2, 05.07.2017
July 5, 2017

FinTech Daily News – Edition 1, 03.07.2017

FinTech Daily News

by Florin Oprea

Edition 1, 03.07.2017

 

Deals, Investments & M&As

Chinese Online Insurer ZhongAn Files For Up To $1.5 Billion HK IPO: IFR

Reuters

ZhongAn Online Property and Casualty Insurance Co Ltd, China’s first internet-only insurer, has filed for an IPO in Hong Kong worth up to $1.5 billion.

Silicon Valley Security Unicorn’ Takes Steps Towards An IPO

Cromwell Schubarth – Silicon Valley Business Journal

Cloud security business Zscaler Inc. is reportedly interviewing potential underwriters for an IPO that could value it at about $2 billion.

Mark Cuban Plans To Invest In Another Digital Coin

Evelyn Cheng, Fred Imbert – CNBC

Bitcoin skeptic Mark Cuban is looking to take part in one of the hottest trends in the digital currency world right now: the initial coin offering (ICO).

One of the companies Cuban is invested in, Unikrn, is planning its own offering.

FAO: Unikrn is a Seattle based media and entertainment company focusing on eSports. It was founded by Rahul Sood (creator of VoodooPC, and Microsoft Ventures), and Karl Flores (co-founder of Pinion).

Swiss Fintech Loses Big Hitter

Finews

Swiss digital insurance broker Knip has agreed to merge with Komparu, a Dutch technology firm. Together they will operate as Digital Insurance Group (DIG).

Fintech’s Hottest Start-Ups Are Blockchain Related Firms

Mark Melin – Value Walk

FAO: Makes ref. to The Fintech 250 from consulting firm CB Insights.

The Funded: 8 Bay Area Startups Raise $25M-Plus At Week’s End

Cromwell Schubarth – Silicon Valley Business Journal

The first half of 2017 ended with a flurry of pre-Fourth of July fundings in which eight Bay Area startups raised $25 million or more.

FAO: Kinetica, San Francisco, $50 million, LogicBio Therapeutics, Foster City, $45 million, ChargePoint, Campbell, $43 million, Swift Navigation, San Francisco, $34 million,  Science Exchange, Palo Alto, $28 million, Spruce Finance, San Francisco, $25 million, Abl , San Francisco, $7.5 million, Cabin, San Francisco, $3 million, LendUp, San Francisco, undisclosed amount.

Not all (pure) fintech but worth mentioning.

Andy Rubin’s Playground Ventures Is Raising Another $15 Million Round

Mudit Mohilay – The Tech Portal

Android Inventor Andy Rubin’s VC firm Playground Ventures is raising another $15 million as part of its mission to back promising startups in areas like  artificial intelligence and new generations of hardware. The firm has filed a form D with the SEC, which stipulates that it is raising a new tranche of $15 million.

Payments

FinTech Startup Revolut ‘To Be Valued At £300m In Upcoming £50m Raise’

Yessi Belo Perez – Tech City News

UK FinTech startup Revolut, which lets customers transfer, exchange and spend money using its multi-currency card, is reportedly close to raising more than £50m despite showing losses.

FAO: Round assumed to be lead by Index Ventures. Ribbit Capital also expected to take part in the fundraising.

Lending

LendUp Receives Strategic Investment From PayPal & Appoints Former CFO Of Lending Club As Board Advisor

Samantha Hurst – Crowdfund Insider

FAO: More details regarding PayPal’s strategic investment in LendUp (also mentioned in our first category “Deals, Investments & M&As”).

Wealth & Personal Finance

Deposit Solutions’ Zinspilot It’s Coming To The UK

Oscar Williams-Grut – Business Insider

Deposit Solutions, A German fintech business backed by Peter Thiel is planning to launch in the UK.

FAO: ZinsPilot is the main platform developed by the company. The company is lead by Max von Bismarck, Chief Business Officer and MD.

Regtech

With Watson and Promontory, IBM Rolls Out ‘Cognitive Regtech’

Jeffrey Kutler- GARP

In the first of what is likely to be a continuing series of financial-services-oriented artificial intelligence applications, IBM has launched into what it calls the “cognitive era of regtech,” extending its work with the Watson platform into areas of risk and compliance management.

FAO: Our friend Jeff Kutler sent us the last piece he shared via Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). Best insight possible on IBM’s “Cognitive Regtech”.

Retail banking

Peek Inside The Fintech Arms Race Between Banks And Startups

Leigh Cuen – International Business Times

Brick-and-mortar banks are in desperate need of a makeover. They know it too. Capital One is opening Capital One Cafes in major cities across the U.S., with hip decor and more laidback consulting vibes than traditional branches.

FAO: Interesting piece. Useful figures.

FinTech People

Venture Firm Co-Founder Demoted Over ‘Unacceptable’ Behavior With Women

The New York Times

A well-known Silicon Valley investor, Dave McClure, has been demoted within the firm he co-founded, 500 Startups, the latest fallout from revelations of mistreatment of women in the technology industry.

An internal investigation found McClure “had inappropriate interactions with women in the tech community,” according to a blog post published Friday by Christine Tsai, 500 Startups co-founder, who said the decision to demote him was made a few months ago.

Via Finews – re. Knip – Komparu merger – Roeland Werring, co-founder of Komparu, will be the Group CTO, while Ruben Troostwijk will stay on as CEO of Komparu. Ingo Weber was appointed as CEO of DIG. Weber used to be a MD at Swiss Re and GE Insurance.

Via Crowdfund Insider – Funding Circle expanded its U.S. leadership team by appointing Joanna Karger as U.S. Head of Capital Markets and Richard Stephenson as U.S. Chief Compliance Officer.

Via San Francisco Business Times – Prosper President Ron Suber stepped down.

Accelerators & Hubs

Paris: World’s Largest Start-Up Incubator to Launch

French Tribune

France’s President Macron kicked off Station F, a new tech incubator. The incubator, which is the largest of its kind in the world, will help Paris evolve into the technology hub of Europe.

FAO: The race it’s definitely on. We had an interesting article during our soft launch – reported here. According to figures from Atomico (a VC firm) VCs invested $2.7 billion  in France in 2016, compared with $2.1 billion in Germany. The UK is the leader in Europe with $3.7 billion in investments.

Technology Boost To Reinforce Hong Kong’s Status As Finance And Trade Centre In Bay Area Plan

Tony Cheung, Raymond Cheng – South China Morning Post

Innovation and technological developments in Hong Kong will be boosted under an agreement on the Greater Bay Area project signed by local and mainland officials on Saturday and witnessed by Chinese President Xi Jinping.

FAO: Hong Kong is pushing very fast in fintech and blockchain. I see a growing competition between East and West, with Asia clearly having the upper hand in investments, speed of adoption, regulation and infrastructure development via its powerful hubs. What do you think? Please send me your opinion.

Why Indian Startups Are Looking Abroad

Economic Times

When Avijit Sarkar was planning to set up a fintech startup last year, he wanted to do it in the US so that he’d have access to a larger market. But, he soon realised that the incorporation expenses were high, and getting a visa could be difficult.

Events

Via CoinDesk – The State of Digital Money, Los Angeles’ First Global Fintech & Blockchain conference – July 22, 2017 in Downtown L.A.’s Financial District at Cross Campus 800 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90017.

Other news

Denmark, Singapore Regulatory Bodies Unite On Fintech Cooperation

Mobile Payments Today

The Monetary Authority of Singapore and the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority have signed a fintech cooperation agreement which aims to help fintech companies in Singapore and Denmark to expand into each other’s markets, according to a press release.

 

FAO: Florin Adrian Oprea, Editor-in-chief FinTech Daily News

DNT: Decebal Nicolaie Todarita, Editor FinTech Daily News