by Florin Oprea
Samuel Wendel – Forbes
The Dubai International Financial Centre has announced the launch of a $100 million fund focused on fintech.
FAO: The fund was announced during the inaugural Global Financial Forum (GFF). As is known, the UAE are actively pushing a lot of money in fintech and blockchain; Dubai has even a plan to become the first blockchain-powered government in the world by 2020.
Their plan is sustained by a lot of initiatives:
– DIFC launched the region’s first FinTech accelerator and received over 100 applications from 32 countries for its inaugural programme (more here)
– earlier this year Dubai’s FSA launched the innovation testing licence for finTech firms (check here)
– Dubai has recently launched its own cryptocurrency called emCash – more in Blockchain Daily News.
Mark Casci – The Yorkshire Post
The boss of an up-and-coming challenger bank has said that the sector is someway off from having the firepower to sufficiently challenge the mainstream banking sector and called for the establishment of a meaningful investment fund to support fintech start-ups. Mr. Alex Letts also questioned whether the challenger banks were radically different from mainstream banking, positing that some had simply “put new clothes on the emperor”.
FAO: That’s a bit aggressive, don’t you think? Maybe Mr Letts, who launched “U Account” last year, used his presence at the respective fintech summit in Leeds as an occasion to make some waves in the media and draw some attention towards his 50k customer base business. Just saying…Maybe he is right, but anyway, could somebody send him this bulletin? Please tell him to read the first story, it’s raining money….
Heather Somerville – Reuters
A proposal by the U.S. Senate to change the way shares in startup companies are taxed incited panic and dread in Silicon Valley, with startup founders and investors warning of nothing less than the demise of their industry should the proposal become law.
FAO: More reactions after the, now famous, Senate tax bill in the US – reported yesterday.
National Payment Corporation of Vietnam and Ant Financial, operator of Alipay, have signed a MOU to outline the strategic partnership between the parties for enabling Alipay for Chinese travelling in Vietnam and contributing to the establishment of a cashless society in Vietnam.
FAO: The Vietnamese people didn’t even hear the Ant “armies” marching…”General Ma” has “taken” another country, peacefully, after the Philippines last month. The expansion going as planned…
CreditGate24 is opening its first branch outside Switzerland in Berlin, seeking to develop the German market for digital financing and investment.
FAO: Das ist schön zu hören! Excuse me, but we do have a lot of German readers, so please permit me to use their language too. We do use French too from time to time, n’est-ce pas?
Wu Hongyuran, Yang Qiaoling & Leng Cheng – Caixin
In China, even department stores are getting into microlending these days. Facing a crowded market, lenders are growing unconventional in their scramble for funds to meet swelling demand. The conventional fundraising method for microlenders is to raise funds from their own shareholders and venture capital investors, although China’s consumer-finance market has grown so quickly that trusts and smaller banks are now flocking to the sector.
FAO: It is indeed crowded. No wonder the Chinese regulators are considering a crackdown on the microlenders (more here – 3rd story).
Ed Leefeldt – CBS News
Lawmakers should look at a recent study by the Cleveland Federal Reserve Bank, one of the major federal banks that promotes financial stability nationwide.
Elliott Haworth – City A.M.
Spotting an opportunity in the approaching era of Open Banking and the second Payment Services Directive Dutch bank ING sent an expedition into the fintech jungle with the task of creating a product that encapsulates the change.
FAO: Woohooo, that was a really good one…”ING sent an expedition into the fintech jungle”. Although, I know a lot of people who might say they feel a lot safer in the jungle than in some areas of Wall Street and/or the City…
Sarmad Khan – The National
Global banks are increasingly investing in banking technology as they seek to dominate the fintech space through collaborations to offset the disruption from start-ups, Ronit Ghose, Citigroup global head of research said.
FAO: More bank-expeditioners?
Julie Verhage, Jennifer Surane – Bloomberg (subscription)
Wall Street firms including JPMorgan and Bank of America formed a group to help manage risks from partnerships as banks increasingly agree to tie-ups with fintech companies.
FAO: …seems so. But bank-expeditioners in the fintech jungle should keep in mind they need to be very cautious. There is a lot of danger out there. For example, there is the myth of El Tunche, in the Amazon jungle. According to www.pura-aventura.com, El Tunche is “considered a type of evil spirit that wanders in the night, it is never seen but it can be heard at night as a shrill and insistent bird call. If you try to imitate the bird, you risk making it angry and putting a spell on you. The spell is the sound of the bird call growing more and more persistent until it invades your sleep, and eventually drives you mad.” Oh, the internet is magnificent…
Ryan Browne – CNBC
Fintech firms in Africa are “complementing” the banking sector rather than disrupting it, an executive at Egypt’s biggest private-sector bank has said.
Gina Hall – Silicon Valley Business Journal
Artificial intelligence could replace half of all jobs in the next decade, Kai-Fu Lee, Google’s former president in China predicts.
DNT: It’s the Industrial Revolution 4.0 and, like in the previous ones, besides the progress and the advantages, there are secondary effects. Some jobs will disappear but others will be created. Luckily for us, this is already happening, as we reported in “Fintech People” section a few days ago.
Via BusinessWire Former Managing Director at HSBC, Roland Wee, appointed as Managing Director at OurCrowd.
DNT: By this move, OurCrowd aims to continue Asia Expansion, the company said.
Penny Crosman – American Banker
Fidelity Investments is joining the ranks of financial firms sharing customer account data with others through an API.
FAO: Good! The more the better!
Rohini Samtani – CNBC
In order for fintech to grow, some countries are giving firms freedom to experiment, lifting the burdens of tight regulation. Switzerland, for one, has introduced a so-called regulatory sandbox, within which small fintech firms can play without regulation.
Jorg Gasser, Switzerland state secretary for international financial matters, said Switzerland could take a few lessons from Singapore’s fintech operations.
In a move to spur more experimentation and collaboration in the local fintech scene, a new fintech innovation hub is being set up in the heart of the central business district. This will be a 100,000 sq ft space at 80 Robinson Road, an office building owned by Hong Leong Group, said Monetary Authority of Singapore MD Ravi Menon.
FAO: More announcements and statements emerge from the Singapore Fintech Festival held at the Singapore Expo.
A team from Andhra Pradesh government headed by Special Chief Secretary and IT Advisor to the Chief Minister J.A. Chowdary has received encouraging response from several organisations in Japan to strengthen fintech ecosystem in Visakhapatnam.
FAO: Florin Adrian Oprea, Editor-in-chief FinTech Daily News
DNT: Decebal Nicolaie Todarita, Editor FinTech Daily News