- Today’s main news: SoFi to roll out checking accounts. Zopa re-opens to new customers. Roostify integrates with LendingTree. China regulator says credit market should adopt blockchain. ETHLend hits 1M GBP in P2P crypto loans. Borrowell launches free Equifax credit report monitoring. Brazilian payments company sets post-Snap IPO record.
- Today’s main analysis: Blockchain equity funding vs. ICOs.
- Today’s thought-provoking articles: 2018’s best online checking accounts. Pain points in digital banking (a must-read). Why Aussies are choosing P2P personal loans. FAQs on P2P lending platforms in India.
- SoFi to roll out checking accounts. AT: “I’m curious to see how banks respond to this. Ever innovating, SoFi is out to prove you don’t need a banking license to act like a bank.”
- 5 challenges Noto will face at SoFi. AT: “A good read, though I don’t think #5 is that big a challenge.”
- Roostify integrates with LendingTree. AT: “An awesome connection, and it should boost Roostify considerably.”
- 2018’s best online checking accounts. AT: “A worthy effort by WalletHub, though I think the infographic based on the 2018 Banking Survey is more interesting.”
- RealtyMogul hires first president.
- What Aaron Halfacre brings to RealtyMogul’s table.
- Samsung invests in Juvo.
- Chime has 750K millennial customers.
- Why most people get rejected for a personal loan.
- Fintech is a long way from disrupting lending.
- Citi’s mobile app lags behind peers.
- Mulvaney outlines Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s new philosophy.
- What you know about millennials is wrong.
- A lesson in crowdfunding.
- Technology is the future of financial advice.
- Zopa re-opens to new customers.
- Fintechs get impatient while banks want extra time.
- UK leads in Forbes 30 under 30.
- Regulator recommends blockchain for the credit market.
- Ant Financial goes green.
- Ponzi scheme leads to protests.
- Pain points to address in digital banking. AT: “This is one of the best reads of the day and applies to alternative lenders as well as banks, no matter the country of origin.”
- ETHLend reaches 1M GBP in P2P crypto lending. AT: “This proves the validity of crypto lending, in my mind.”
- Blockchain equity funding vs. ICOs. AT: “Very interesting.”
- GDS Link acquires Fraudscreen.
- Finastra accelerates FusionFabric.cloud adoption.
- United States
- SoFi will roll out checking accounts this spring (Tearsheet), Rated: AAA
- Five challenges facing SoFi’s new CEO (American Banker), Rated: A
- Roostify Announces Integration With LendingTree (BusinessWire), Rated: AAA
- 2018’s Best Online Checking Accounts (WalletHub), Rated: AAA
- RealtyMogul Boosts REIT Cred with Hire of Industry Veteran Aaron Halfacre as President (Crowdfund Insider), Rated: A
- Aaron Halfacre Becomes RealtyMogul’s First President (Bisnow), Rated: A
- Juvo Receives Investment from Samsung to Boost Smartphone Usage Among Underbanked (Finovate), Rated: A
- The challenger bank Chime says it has 750,000 millennial customers (American Banker), Rated: A
- The reason why most people get rejected for a personal loan (Yahoo! Finance), Rated: A
- Why fintech is still a way off disrupting lending (Financial News), Rated: A
- Citi’s mobile app is lagging behind its peers (Tearsheet), Rated: A
- Mulvaney outlines new CFPB governing philosophy (The National Law Review), Rated: A
- What you thought you knew about millennials is wrong (American Banker), Rated: A
- Making it in GR: Lessons in crowdfunding (Rapid Growth), Rated: A
- Technology and the Future of Financial Advice (Janus Henderson), Rated: A
- United Kingdom
- P2P platform Zopa re-opens to new customers (Financial Times), Rated: AAA
- Fintechs impatient as British banks seek extra time to open up (NASDAQ), Rated: A
- UK fintech takes the lead in the Forbes 30 under 30 (AltFi), Rated: A
- China’s Banking Regulator Pushes Blockchain Adoption for Credit Market (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA
- Ant Financial and the Greening of Fintech (The Diplomat), Rated: A
- Ponzi scheme sparks protests (The Standard), Rated: B
- European Union
- Ten User’s Pain Points Digital Banking and FinTech Should Care Of (Finextra), Rated: AAA
- ETHLend hits £1m crypto-P2P loans milestone (P2P Finance News), Rated: AAA
- Blockchain Startups Absorbed 5X More Capital Via ICOs Than Equity Financings In 2017 (CB Insights), Rated: AAA
- GDS Link Acquires Fraudscreen, the UK’s Leading Provider of Analytics to Predict Payment Intent (GDS Link Email), Rated: A
- Finastra sees accelerating FusionFabric.cloud adoption (Finastra Email), Rated: A
- The everyday Aussie is increasingly choosing a peer to peer personal loan – here’s why (mozo), Rated: AAA
- Stuart Stoyan is FinTech Australia’s new chair (Business Insider), Rated: B
- RBI Directions On Peer To Peer Lending Platforms: Frequenly Asked Questions (Mondaq), Rated: AAA
- VC Firm 3one4 Capital Announces Second Fund With An Initial Corpus Of $ 39 Mn (Inc42), Rated: A
- Tryb Group raises $ 30M to develop fintech platforms for Southeast Asia (TechCrunch), Rated: A
- Genie ICO Adds Cryptocurrency Heavyweight David Drake and Other Experts to Its Advisory Board (CoinTelegraph), Rated: B
- Egypt’s fintech startups are growing in number, value, and specialization (wamda), Rated: AAA
- Borrowell launches free Equifax credit report monitoring, a Canadian first (GlobeNewswire), Rated: AAA
- Canada Venture Capital 2017 (CB Insights), Rated: A
- South America
- NYSE’s Biggest IPO Since Snap Is $ 2.3 Billion for Brazil Fintech (Bloomberg), Rated: AAA
SoFi will roll out checking accounts this spring (Tearsheet), Rated: AAA
SoFi is rolling out checking accounts without a banking license, demonstrating the new reality that a company doesn’t have to be a bank in order to bank customers.
By partnering with the Wilmington, Delaware-based WSFS Financial, SoFi will roll out a fee-free checking account and debit card this spring in a bundle it’s calling SoFi Money, designed to address the pain points customers have with day-to-day banking products, like high fees and clunky digital interfaces, executives said at a media gathering in New York Tuesday morning. SoFi Money will include peer-to-peer transfers between SoFi customers, mobile check deposit and high yield interest rates on deposits (0.75 to 0.85 percent). It will be available first to current SoFi members before the broader rollout.
Five challenges facing SoFi’s new CEO (American Banker), Rated: A
Reforming SoFi’s culture.
Determining when to go public. SoFi has a number of key shareholders who might like to access wealth that is tied up in the company’s shares. That list includes the Japanese conglomerate SoftBank, which led a $1 billion equity financing round in 2015, and the venture capital firm Silver Lake Partners, which led last year’s $500 million round. That round reportedly valued the privately held company at more than $4 billion.
Deciding how to grow. But while student loan refinancing proved to be an excellent way to find new customers during a period of low interest rates, that opportunity is now shrinking, as rising interest rates reduce the spread between what borrowers pay the federal government and what SoFi can offer.
Yes or no on a bank charter?
Proving that he has the right background. Noto does not appear to have any experience in consumer financial services, which could be viewed as a weakness.
Roostify Announces Integration With LendingTree (BusinessWire), Rated: AAA
Roostify, a provider of automated mortgage transaction technology, today announced that it has integrated its online mortgage platform with LendingTree (NASDAQ: TREE), the online loan marketplace. The new integration makes it easier than ever for consumers to locate and apply with the right lender.
Lenders can utilize the new integration to create a seamless path for consumers to search, select, apply for, and close a loan online. Consumers selecting an offer on LendingTree from a lender using Roostify will be able to authenticate into the lender’s Roostify-powered online experience, with all information securely pre-populated. The consumer can move from shopping around to getting their loan in just a few clicks, streamlining the experience and improving lead quality for lenders.
The integration will enter general availability in Q1 2018 for all joint clients of Roostify and LendingTree.
2018’s Best Online Checking Accounts (WalletHub), Rated: AAA
More than 6 in 10 people don’t realize that online-only banks offer better rates and lower fees than their counterparts with branch access, according to WalletHub’s 2018 Banking Survey. But it’s true. What online-only accounts lack in terms of face-to-face interaction, they make up for with superior terms. For example, the average online checking account costs 47% less than its branch-based counterpart, according to WalletHub’s latest Banking Landscape Report. And the average online savings account pays 457% more interest than the branch alternative.
Best Online Checking Accounts – Editors’ Picks
|Best For…||Online Checking Account||Best Feature|
|Overall||Aspiration Summit Account||APY up to 1.00%|
|Highest APY||Consumers Credit Union Free Rewards Checking||APY up to 4.59%|
|Debit-Card Rewards||Bank5 Connect High-Interest Checking Account||1 point per $2 spent|
|No Monthly Fee||BofI X Checking
Capital One 360 Checking Account
|No ATM fees
No ATM fees
|International Travel||Charles Schwab High Yield Investor Checking||No foreign fee|
|Money Management Tools||PNC Bank Virtual Wallet||Spending analysis|
RealtyMogul Boosts REIT Cred with Hire of Industry Veteran Aaron Halfacre as President (Crowdfund Insider), Rated: A
RealtyMogul, a leading real estate crowdfunding platform offering Reg D (accredited) and Reg A+ (both accreds and non-accreds) investment opportunities in commercial and residential property, has hired a new President to help lead the firm. Aaron Halfacre, a 20 year real estate executive, has joined RealtyMogul bringing in institutional expertise including in the hot REIT sector.
Aaron Halfacre Becomes RealtyMogul’s First President (Bisnow), Rated: A
A former Campus Crest president and chief investment officer, Halfacre took a year and a half break after the publicly traded student housing REIT was acquired by Harrison Street Real Estate Capital in a $1.9B deal.
As president of RealtyMogul, Halfacre will be responsible for creating a strategy, growing assets and augmenting business growth. He will serve as a voting member of the firm’s investment committee, which has invested in more than $1.4B of real estate since 2013, the company reports.
Juvo Receives Investment from Samsung to Boost Smartphone Usage Among Underbanked (Finovate), Rated: A
Mobile identity company Juvo has received an investment from Samsung NEXT, an off-shoot of Samsung that launched in 2013 to create new software and foster a startup culture at Samsung. The amount of the investment was undisclosed and adds to the San Francisco-based company’s $54 million in equity funding.
The bigger story here is that the investment is a strategic one. Samsung will bring Juvo access to billions of underbanked prepaid users across the globe. This will help Juvo enable MNOs to increase smartphone adoption among prepaid mobile subscribers.
The challenger bank Chime says it has 750,000 millennial customers (American Banker), Rated: A
Chime, a mobile-only neobank for millennials, said Tuesday that it has opened 750,000 accounts to date and is signing up users at a brisk pace this month.
The growth is extraordinary. While there are many other mobile-only challenger banks in the U.S. — including Qapital, Digit and, more recently, Varo and Douugh — few have racked up large numbers yet. Chime touts a low-fee checking and savings account with a debit card and an app that provides automated savings and real-time notifications; there are no monthly or overdraft fees nor minimum-balance requirements. The Bancorp Bank holds the federally-insured accounts.
The reason why most people get rejected for a personal loan (Yahoo! Finance), Rated: A
LendEDU, a marketplace for loans and financial products, just released data showing that 76% of people who apply for a personal loan are declined. One of the main reasons for rejection? A low credit score. The average American has a credit score of 687. Meanwhile, the average FICO credit score of an approved applicant was 741.
Of those who do get approved, LendEDU predicts that just 35% went on to accept the personal loan.
Currently, 16 million consumers have an unsecured personal loan. According to a TransUnion, personal lending balances grew a steady 10.8% in the second quarter of 2017, totaling $108 billion.
Back in 2010, fintech only made up 3% of personal loan lenders. In 2015, Transunion says that number jumped to 30%.
Why fintech is still a way off disrupting lending (Financial News), Rated: A
But of the many things that banks do, lending to small and medium sized companies (‘SME’ lending) is one of the more complex areas to emulate. It is also politically charged. As such, there is some evidence that the disruption attempted in the area of lending is itself being disrupted by the practicalities of a complex area of finance.
Citi’s mobile app is lagging behind its peers (Tearsheet), Rated: A
The fourth-largest bank by assets grew its total active mobile users 21 percent year over year to nine million, the bank reported last week in its fourth-quarter earnings.
By contrast, Chase reported 30.1 million users, Bank of America 24.2 million and Wells Fargo 21.2 million.
Citi’s growth rate for 2017 was stronger though, at 21 percent year over year, than its peers’. Chase reported 13 percent growth, Bank of America 12 percent and Wells Fargo 8 percent.
Mulvaney outlines new CFPB governing philosophy (The National Law Review), Rated: A
- While observing that there will be times when “dramatic action” is needed to protect consumers and that, at such times, he expected the CFPB “to be vigorous in [its] enforcement of the law,” Mr. Mulvaney stated that “bringing the full weight of the federal government down on the necks of the people we serve should be something that we do only reluctantly, and only when all other attempts at resolution have failed.”
- In using its enforcement authority, the CFPB will focus on “quantifiable and unavoidable harm to the consumer” and when such harm does not exist, the CFPB “won’t go looking for excuses to bring lawsuits.” In addition, there will be “more formal rule making and less regulation by enforcement” because “the people we regulate should have the right to know what the rules are before being charged with breaking them.”
- CFPB priorities should be guided by data such as 2016 complaint data which showed that “almost a third of the complaints” received by the CFPB related to debt collection and “[o]nly 0.9% related to prepaid cards and 2% to payday lending.”
- In light of the Dodd-Frank Act requirement for the CFPB to “consider the potential costs and benefits to consumers and covered persons,” CFPB decisions should be driven by quantitative analysis. Although qualitative analysis can play a role, it should not be to the exclusion of measurable “costs and benefits.”
Read the memo for yourself here.
What you thought you knew about millennials is wrong (American Banker), Rated: A
Sixty-three percent say they are saving money. This is very close to the rate of Gen Xers (64%) and baby boomers (75%).
Fifty-four percent of millennials say they are on a budget, the same level as Gen X and only slightly below the rate of boomers (57%).
They are diligent about savings and budgeting: 67% of millennials who have a savings goal stick to it. And 73% of millennials on a budget adhere to it regularly.
And 59% say they feel financially secure, compared with 54% of Gen Xers and 63% of baby boomers.
Making it in GR: Lessons in crowdfunding (Rapid Growth), Rated: A
Last month’s “Making it in Grand Rapids” article focused on the ever-expanding alternative financing options for entrepreneurs, such as: impact investment funds, peer-to-peer lending solutions and crowdfunding platforms. Grand Rapids entrepreneur Don Rhoads is Owner/Inventor of At Last Industries (At Last), which created the BedBud Alarm. He is also Head of Development at Cut Through Creative. Rhoads shares his progression from having an idea through the development and launch of his Kickstarter campaign—and the insights he learned along the way.
RG: A recent Small Business Credit Survey reported that “70 percent of startup applicants are in need of funding to support [their growth]” and that “52 percent of startups [have] applied for financing.” Did you pursue any avenues before deciding on crowdfunding?
DR: Yes. I actually applied for and presented at a 5×5 Night. Unfortunately, I didn’t win that one, but as much as I was disheartened, I was still [determined to] fulfill the product. Also, through traditional bank loans, I applied through my current bank. It was a little bit difficult. In a startup, it is difficult to put a value on a business. [Banks] want capital behind it because most startups fail anyway, so they want some substance behind you so they can get their money back. I was told I would need to be a little bit further down the line to get additional funding.
Technology and the Future of Financial Advice (Janus Henderson), Rated: A
Technology arrives in waves and is embraced over an adoption curve. These waves are growing stronger – in large part because technology is becoming ever more powerful. Over time, we have seen these waves play out in financial planning, too.
It is worth looking at two of the challenges faced by the industry now. The first is demographics. Clients have grown older and wealthier, but they are not being replaced within the market for traditional advice services. This is creating an advice gap for firms who need to replenish their client bases.
The second big issue is that consumer engagement is challenging. Long-term thinking hurts. As Daniel Kahneman articulated in Thinking, Fast and Slow, human beings do not easily think about the future in an analytical way and there remains room for improvement in financial literacy among the public. Add to that the low levels of customer trust for the industry and many consumers are not switched on to the benefits of financial advice.
P2P platform Zopa re-opens to new customers (Financial Times), Rated: AAA
Zopa, the UK’s first peer-to-peer lender, has reopened its platform to new customers after having to close to new money last year amid high demand for its new Innovative finance Isa (Ifisa) product and a long-running imbalance between lenders and borrowers.
Fintechs impatient as British banks seek extra time to open up (NASDAQ), Rated: A
Financial technology firms were supposed to start breaking into mainstream banking this month when new rules forced Britain’s nine big banks to loosen their grip on the industry.
But many fintech companies are still waiting with frustration on the sidelines after the banks delayed making the changes.
Financial technology firms were supposed to start breaking into mainstream banking this month when new rules forced Britain’s nine big banks to loosen their grip on the industry.
But six of the nine banks have asked Britain’s regulator for an extension to the January 13 deadline for putting in place the ‘open banking’ regulation, which overlaps with a new European Union directive known as PSD2.
UK fintech takes the lead in the Forbes 30 under 30 (AltFi), Rated: A
The gender balance has been particularly notable in the finance sector this year, as Forbes named Starling Bank’s Chief Platform Officer, Megan Caywood, and Lendable co-founder Victoria van Lennep alongside her business partner Martin Kissinger, as ones to watch.
In the technology category, Monzo co-founder Jonas Huckestein and the co-founders of digital receipts startup Flux all found themselves highlighted by Forbes.
China’s Banking Regulator Pushes Blockchain Adoption for Credit Market (CoinDesk), Rated: AAA
Blockchain technology should be adopted as part of a plan to boost development of China’s secondary loan market, according to a paper by the China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC).
Published on Jan. 19, the paper, drafted by a special committee, covers a variety of topics around developing and regulating financial technologies. In a section on the future development of China’s credit market, it suggests the country should double down its adoption of blockchain technology.
Download and read the report yourself here (in Chinese).
Ant Financial and the Greening of Fintech (The Diplomat), Rated: A
Ant Financial, an affiliate of Alibaba, is one clear example of a company using fintech to encourage a greener world.
Ant Forest is the world’s first largescale, bottom-up pilot in greening citizens’ consumption behavior through the use digital technology and social media. It is an app that Ant users can voluntarily engage with to reduce their carbon footprint and encourage their social networks to do the same. Users that perform carbon-reducing activities, such as paying bills online or walking to work, relative to a predetermined benchmark, are rewarded “green energy” points. As users accumulate enough points virtually, a real tree is planted. To date, Ant Forest has planted saxauls, willows, and Scots pine trees in Inner Mongolia and Gansu.
Ponzi scheme sparks protests (The Standard), Rated: B
Chinese authorities are struggling to quell protests after the collapse of an investment scheme that took about 30 billion yuan (HK$36.7 billion) from millions of depositors.
Hundreds of people marched on Monday in Nanjing, where Qianbao started in 2012, shouting for officials to act. But a video shows police grabbing investors as others yelled about being beaten up.
Ten User’s Pain Points Digital Banking and FinTech Should Care Of (Finextra), Rated: AAA
Studies have shown that users tend to quickly switch products and services. This also concerns banks as the competition and the number of Open Banking services increase due to the implementation of the European Directive PSD2.
Onboarding becomes particularly important in digital era. It can be a productive introduction to a new service or a challenging obstacle that deters customers. The banks of the future should provide a full digital onboarding.
Log in difficulties or problems shouldn’t create obstacles for the customer. After all, no one would go to a restaurant with a locked door.
Users should be able to fully control their banking. It is crucial for them to find a certain transaction and download a payment slip. View transaction history is among the TOP 3 customer scenarios. This function should be simple and understandable. Users want to filter their transactions to find specific items, view detailed information, report a violation, check payment status, export and save them, etc.
We are pleased to see that bank payment interfaces are becoming simpler each year. Digital technologies allow us to move complex banking procedures to the background. Challenger Banks ar a good example here.
The purpose of payment limits is to ensure the user’s security. The user should have online access to a flexible configuration of any financial transaction.
There shouldn’t be too many notifications, only relevant ones.
Being in the users’ shoes and finding pain points in products and services will be a crucial competitive advantage. Companies recognising this issue will take a leading position in the future financial market.
ETHLend hits £1m crypto-P2P loans milestone (P2P Finance News), Rated: AAA
CRYPTO-BACKED peer-to-peer lending platform ETHLend has funded $2m (£1.4m) of loans in just over a month since launching.
The platform, which lets investors back business and personal loans worldwide n the Ethereum (ETH) digital currency, only went live in December but says it has already facilitated 438 loans.
Its biggest loan so far was for 83ETH, equivalent to £58,681.
Blockchain Startups Absorbed 5X More Capital Via ICOs Than Equity Financings In 2017 (CB Insights), Rated: AAA
In Q1’17, 19 ICOs closed for about $21M. Three quarters later, in Q4’17, over 500 ICOs closed for almost $3B. According to CB Insights, 2017 saw over 5x more capital deployed in ICOs than in equity financings to blockchain startups. Q4’17 alone saw that number jump to 7x.
In total, ICOs raised over $5B across nearly 800 deals in 2017. To put those numbers into context, equity investors deployed $1B in 215 deals to the sector.
GDS Link Acquires Fraudscreen, the UK’s Leading Provider of Analytics to Predict Payment Intent (GDS Link Email), Rated: A
GDS Link, a global provider of risk management solutions and consulting for multiple verticals within the financial services industry including marketplace lending, retail finance, alternative financial services, credit card, auto, and business lending and leasing, today announced that it has finalized the acquisition of
Finastra sees accelerating FusionFabric.cloud adoption (Finastra Email), Rated: A
At its regional flagship thought leadership event, Finastra Universe Paris,Finastra today welcomed new companies to the FusionFabric.cloud open architecture. Among the early adopter Fintechs, consultants, banks and academics using the platform to develop and deploy innovative apps are Efficiency MC, Conpend and BankBI. In addition, Thomson Reuters joins Finastra’s innovation ecosystem as a data provider.
Thomson Reuters is currently embedding its instrument reference data into FusionFabric.cloud.
Paris-based system integrator, Efficiency MC, is using the platform to develop an interest rate derivatives pricing model app.
European Fintech, Conpend, is using FusionFabric.cloud to develop apps for corporate banking.
Cloud focused Fintech, BankBI, has a Performance Management and Analytics application for FusionFabric.cloud to complement the Finastra retail banking solutions, including C-suite dashboards.
The everyday Aussie is increasingly choosing a peer to peer personal loan – here’s why (mozo), Rated: AAA
ASIC’s second marketplace lending survey revealed that $300 million worth of personal and business loans were written by peer to peer lenders during the last financial year – almost double the amount commissioned during the 2015/2016 financial year.
Stuart Stoyan is FinTech Australia’s new chair (Business Insider), Rated: B
Stuart Stoyan, the founder and CEO of Melbourne-based fintech MoneyPlace, which in 2015 became Australia’s second fully licensed marketplace lending platform, has become FinTech Australia’s new chair.
RBI Directions On Peer To Peer Lending Platforms: Frequenly Asked Questions (Mondaq), Rated: AAA
2.2 Electronic platforms connecting banks and NBFCs to borrowers
The RBI has clarified that electronic platforms that assist only banks, non-banking financial companies (“NBFCs”) and other regulated All India Financial Institutions (“AIFls”) to identify borrowers will not be considered peer to peer lending platforms (“P2P Lending Platforms”). However, in cases where, apart from banks, NBFCs and AIFls, or other retail lenders use the electronic platform for lending, the platform will have to register separately as a non-banking financial platform – peer to peer lending platform (an “NBFC-P2P”).
2.3 Leverage ratio and investible funds for an NBFC-P2P
The RBI has clarified that for an NBFC-P2P, customers’ funds lent or borrowed by using the platform is not reckoned as an outside liability of the NBFC-P2P, for the purpose of determining the leverage ratio of the NBFC-P2P.
(a) Do the P2P Lending Platforms have to fulfil the 50-50 test issued by the RBI to fall within the purview of the P2P Directions?
The RBI, with its clarification that an existing NBFC cannot operate as an NBFC-P2P, has clarified that the 50-50 test set out by the RBI to qualify as a non-banking financial company is not applicable to an NBFC-P2P.
With closed commitments for $39 Mn, the 3one4 Capital team will look to enhance its deep involvement model across its investment domains. The fund will invest early stage startups with ticket sizes of $250K to $2 Mn.
Tryb Group raises $ 30M to develop fintech platforms for Southeast Asia (TechCrunch), Rated: A
For a Western comparison, Tryb aspires to be like LendingClub with a focus on digitizing the predominantly analog systems of financial services and banking in Southeast Asia, a region of over 600 million consumers.
“There’s strong demand to start buying ASEAN credit, with Japanese, Chinese, American and other investors looking to buy up $50-100 million worth. But they don’t know where to start since it’s all on paper,” he said.
Currently, the Tryb business doesn’t make direct revenue. It holds stakes in a number of businesses — including MC Payment which is in the process of going public in Singapore — but Gnirck said it has two acquisitions that he expects to finalize in the coming months.
Genie ICO Adds Cryptocurrency Heavyweight David Drake and Other Experts to Its Advisory Board (CoinTelegraph), Rated: B
Joining the Crowd Genie advisory board is David Drake, Founder and Chairman of LDJ Capital, who is also a global pioneer in the cryptocurrency industry and has written for more than 100 publications on innovative investing. Also joining the board is serial entrepreneur Petter Sehlin, who is a Founding Partner of global angel fund True Global Ventures and founder of the Polarchain blockchain. The founders of one of the world’s most comprehensive online cryptocurrency databases and information resources, AllCoinWiki, Anders Larsson and Joakim Holmer have also joined the board.
Egypt’s fintech startups are growing in number, value, and specialization (wamda), Rated: AAA
Financial inclusion is critical in reducing poverty and achieving shared economic growth, as mentioned ‘The Global Findex Database 2014: Measuring Financial Inclusion around the World’: When people can participate in the financial system, they are better able to start and expand businesses, invest in their children’s education, and absorb financial shocks.
According to figures shared with Wamda by the World Bank Global Findex database, only 14 percent of adults in Egypt have an account as of 2014, and eight percent use an account to make digital financial payments. The Findex said that about 86 percent of adults in the country do not have an account and are therefore considered unbanked.
The model of Fawry, has demonstrated the validity of such business models, and has driven several concepts to launch.” Fawry, which was launched in 2008, provides payment solutions through ATM machines, mobile wallets, and retail points.
Egypt-based fintech startup Moneyfellows raised $600,000 from a group of investors led by Dubai Angel Investors and 500 Startups. This web and mobile-based platform founded in December 2014, allows users to create, manage, and track money circles (group money lending) online with members of their social networks. The startup makes money by charging users a small fee when they withdraw their payout from their money circle. So far, the startup has around 2,600 paying users and about 240 active circles.
Vapulus, which launched in December 2017, partners so far with 400 retail and F&B merchants in the country, and aims to reach 16,000 within one year of operation. The startup is a mobile app and mobile POS service for both individuals and sellers.
Borrowell launches free Equifax credit report monitoring, a Canadian first (GlobeNewswire), Rated: AAA
Borrowell today announced that it is providing Canadians with free access to their Equifax credit reports. For the first time, Canadians will be able to monitor important information in their Equifax credit report on a monthly basis, including credit utilization, inquiries and credit account history, for free online.
To date, Borrowell has provided credit information to nearly half a million Canadians.
Canada Venture Capital 2017 (CB Insights), Rated: A
Annual funding to Canada hits high in 2017
- Total annual funding reached $2.7B, distributed across 333 deals in full-year 2017.
- Total funding increased 7%, while deal activity decreased by 12%.
NYSE’s Biggest IPO Since Snap Is $ 2.3 Billion for Brazil Fintech (Bloomberg), Rated: AAA
PagSeguro Digital LTD, a payments company owned by Brazilian media group Universo Online SA, raised about $2.27 billion in an initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange, according to Bloomberg data.
The company, which has a similar model to Jack Dorsey’s Square, sold shares at $21.50 each, above the top of the price range of $17.50 to $20.50 in the offering prospectus, with demand higher than underwriters expected. The equity offering is the largest on the New York Stock Exchange since Snap Inc in March 2017. Investors warmed to the stock, which rose as much as 36 percent to $29.25 in early trading.