FinTech Daily News – Edition 7, 12.07.2017
July 12, 2017
FinTech Daily News – Edition 9, 14.07.2017
July 14, 2017

FinTech Daily News – Edition 8, 13.07.2017

FinTech Daily News

by Florin Oprea

Edition 8, 13.07.2017

Deals, Investments & M&As

UK Fintech Start-Up Revolut Raises $66 Million, Adds Bitcoin

The New York Times

The “global banking alternative” Revolut has raised $66 million in latest fund-raising round.

FAO: Round led by Index Ventures, as assumed almost two weeks ago. Revolut has around 700,000 customers, with over 400,000 in Britain.

Darktrace Valued At $825m As Fintech Firm Revolut Secures New Funding

James Titcomb – The Telegraph

Darktrace, a cyber security firm backed by Mike Lynch, the Autonomy founder, has received $75m (£58m) in a funding round that values the company at $825m.

FAO: Britain defends its position as fintech leader of Europe and the world. These new announcements come in the light of a more aggressive France (check latest developments) and a Germany with high ambitions in this space.

Santander Buys Stakes In Three Startups As Botin Pushes Into Fintech

Edward Robinson – Bloomberg

Banco Santander SA, Spain’s biggest lender, bought minority stakes in three financial-technology firms as Chairman Ana Botin makes machine learning a hallmark of her growth plan.

FAO: Santander InnoVentures bought stakes in Pixoneye, Curve and Gridspace. Total number of the bank’s investments in fintech companies reaches 15.

Google Steps Up A.I. Investments With A New Venture Arm

Jordan Novet –  CNBC

Anna Patterson Talks Gradient Ventures, Google’s New AI fund

John Mannes – Tech Crunch

It’s been pretty obvious for a few months now, but Google has finally admitted that it’s running its own investment fund targeting machine intelligence startups. The fund will go by the name Gradient Ventures and provide capital, resources and education to AI-first startups.

FAO: Besides Anna Patterson (Founder & Managing Partner) the Gradient team includes: Ankit Jain (Founding Partner & Director of Engineering), and Shabih Rizvi (Founding Partner).

IBM Leads $15M Funding Round for AI Programming Startup

Sarah Thomas  – Light Reading

IBM, Intel and others are pumping $15 million into Light Bind, the company behind the Scala programming language developers are using to build artificial intelligence applications that draw on real-time data. The funding, led by IBM, builds on a partnership it announced with the startup last month to advance the development of AI in the enterprise.

Flybridge Capital Launches Woman-Only VC Fund

Andy Rosen – Boston Globe

Wading into one of the most contentious issues in the tech industry, Boston-based Flybridge Capital Partners is launching a new fund that will invest only in startups led by women.

FAO: Remember last week’s plethora of articles regarding 500 Startups? What dou think of this initiative?

Payments

Why PayPal Could Join the Payments Buying Spree

Emily Bary – Barron’s Next

Financial technology companies are hungry for deals these days, with payment processor Vantiv planning to buy European rival Worldpay (FAO: reported here), and Visa taking a stake in Swedish startup Klarna (FAO: reported here). The stars seem aligned for PayPal to make a move as well.

FAO: Time to let the money move. Right?

Exclusive: Ant Financial Refiles For U.S. Approval Of MoneyGram Deal – Sources

Greg Roumeliotis – Reuters

Ant Financial, the affiliate of China’s Alibaba Group Holding Ltd that agreed to buy money transfer company MoneyGram International Inc for $1.2 billion, has resubmitted the deal for U.S. review.

Business tech

ZeroFox Closes $40 Million Funding Round, Continues Growth Toward IPO

Morgan Eichensehr – Baltimore Business Journal

ZeroFox has closed a $40 million funding round.

FAO: Lead investors were Redline Capital and Silver Lake Waterman. ZeroFox is monitoring social platforms for cyber attacks, information loss, social engineering campaigns, account compromise and fraud.

Xero Avoids Setting Fresh Targets At Annual Meeting

Tom Pullar – Strecker

Xero boss Rod Drury has again warned that rivals are selling their services cheaply in some markets in a bid for market share.

Wealth & Personal Finance

InvestCloud Forms Partnership With Apex Clearing to Create New Digital Advice Platform

Samantha Hurst – Crowdfund Insider.

Apex Clearing, an independent, full-service clearing firm and leader in the digital wealth space, has selected global fintech firm InvestCloud as a technology partner for its new digital advice platform.

Let’s Get Digital: It’s time For Advisers To Adapt

Suleman Din – Financial Planning

The top executives delivered a message in unison: Digital trends are permanently changing the wealth management industry and advisers must change with them.

Retail banking

5 Reasons Why Consolidation of Fintech Ecosystem May Be Inevitable

Devie Mohan – The Financial Brand

The challenger banking battlefield is crowded, with new players coming into the marketplace every week. With the geographic and product scope of most new fintech challengers being limited, and venture capital being more selective, is consolidation inevitable?

Data Centers

Apple Sets Up China Data Center To Meet New Cyber-Security Rules

Reuters

Apple Inc on Wednesday said it is setting up its first data center in China, in partnership with a local internet services company, to comply with tougher cyber-security laws introduced last month.

FAO: Apple must  comply with the newly issued cyber security laws.

FinTech People

Via Finextra – Axioma appointed Thomas D. Severance to the newly created position of Senior Managing Director and Chief Revenue Officer.

Via which-50 – Data exchange platform Data Republic has appointed Steve Prestidge as Chief Revenue Officer.

Orchard CEO Matt Burton Started Off Running Fintech Meetups; Now He’s Raised $44 Million

Spencer White – Benzinga

What’s true in real estate is true in fintech—location, location, location is everything. Matt Burton, CEO of Orchard Platform, a technology and data analysis provider for online lending platforms, is living proof of that.

Regulation

Using A Regulatory Sandbox For Fintech

Varad Pande, Nehal Garg,Vineet Bhandari – Live Mint

If fintech has the potential to be a game changer for inclusion, why are we not seeing more innovation for the mass market and the so-called “base of pyramid” (BoP) consumer?

Accelerators & Hubs

UK Ranked As Top 10 Digital Economy

Karl Flinders – Computer Weekly

The UK is rated as one of the leading countries in digital capability, with the fintech sector and the banks playing an important supporting role.

FAO: Here’s a top 10 list of advanced digital economies: UK, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, Denmark, Finland, Singapore, South Korea, Hong Kong and the US according to a new Research paper released by MasterCard and the Fletcher School at Tufts University in the US.

Associations & Federations

Collaboration Between DIFC & DIEDC Set To Launch Islamic FinTech

Mondovisione

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the leading financial hub in the $7.4 trillion Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Dubai Islamic Economy Development Centre (DIEDC), as part of its commitment to Islamic finance under the DIFC 2024 Strategy and in line with the vision of ‘Dubai: The Capital of Islamic Economy’.

FAO: Note that DIFC’s FinTech Hive has received over 100 applications from more than 32 countries – as reported here during our soft launch..

Other news

Mozambique Links Agriculture With Fintech

Finextra

Institute of Cereals of Mozambique (ICM), announced the signing of a collaboration agreement with FinComEco, the fully integrated Financial & Commodities Ecosystem providing services, financing, capacity building and enablement solutions through a venture, linking agriculture to the latest financial technology.

FAO: FinComEco is providing the commodity trading platform and electronic warehouse receipts capabilities. FinComEco’s technology partner is GMEX Group

Financial App Finch Launches In Australia With A Challenge To The Big Banks

Angela Castles – Smart Company

Melbourne-based fintech startup Finch has launched its “financial app for your social life”, which aims to use relationship-based metrics and personal touches to appeal to a millennial market, unseating similar offerings from banks.

Opinion

How Brexit Is Set To Hurt Europe’s Financial Systems

Anjuli Davies, Huw Jones & Andrew MacAskill – Reuters

Melbourne-based fintech startup Finch has launched its “financial app for your social life”, which aims to use relationship-based metrics and personal touches to appeal to a millennial market, unseating similar offerings from banks.

FAO: A must-read.

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

DNT: Decebal Nicolaie Todarita, Editor FinTech Daily News