The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup takes a look at the latest international fintech stories. This week, United Fintech buys TTMzero stake, while Joompay launches a cross-European P2P payment app.
Product and service launches
Joompay, developed by e-commerce app Joom, is a social finance app supporting person-to-business payments across Europe. The app recently secured a Luxembourg Electronic Money Institution licence to allow its users to send and receive money from any person. In January, Joompay also became a principal member of the Visa card scheme, allowing it to issue its new Joompay cards across Europe.
Ping Identity unveils new cloud identity verification service to make it easier to verify identity for rapid account onboarding, authentication and fraud prevention. PingOne Verify is aimed at companies in regulated industries, such as financial services and insurance, that have strict know your customer requirements.
Meanwhile, Tecnotree, a global provider of telecom IT solutions, launches Spark, an intelligent wallet for digital service providers. The self-onboarding solution allows subscribers to house their digital wallets, banking and loyalty points in one centralised place; enabling access to financial services on the go.
Financial technology provider Iress has integrated Aviva’s equity release real time rates into its The Exchange platform. The integration is designed to help advisers increase their efficiency by completing their whole-of-market research in one place.
While, global early-stage VC Antler is launching in Copenhagen. The expansion is boosted by an investment of DKK50million ($8.1million) from the Danish state’s investment fund. Antler will work with early-stage founders to help develop green companies of the future, as well as invest in startups. It already has offices in London, Berlin, Bangalore, Stockholm, Oslo, New York, Singapore and Sydney.
Fintech firm Curve adds former president of Samsung’s global strategy group Cuong Do to its board. The appointment coincides with Curve’s growth drive to expand in the US later this year, push deeper into Europe and launch new product Curve Credit.
Nomis Solutions, the pricing management solutions provider, has hired Matt Wooley as chief revenue officer. He is responsible for boosting revenue growth, as well as developing better relationships with partners and customers.
B-North hires Jackie Ewer as head of operational risk and compliance. Ewer will help shape policies and systems to manage operational risk, conduct risk, compliance risk and financial crime risk and play a vital role in delivering the upcoming SME lending bank.
Payments provider Checkout.com has appointed Ott Kaukver as chief technology officer, as well as Nick Worswick as chief revenue officer. The hires follow the fintech’s recent Series C funding, which tripled its valuation to $15billion. The hires will help drive growth in North America and Asia Pacific.
Asset management firm Arca has unveiled two key appointment. Vance Sanders joins as chief financial officer and chief compliance officer. While Nikesh Dalal is head of product for Arca’s innovation division, Arca Labs. In early January, Arca announced it had raised $10million in Series A funding.
Meanwhile, Amanda Mickleburgh, ACI’s lead for merchant fraud, has been appointed to the European Advisory Board of the Merchant Risk Council (MRC). Mickleburgh says the MRC is essential in its ability to connect merchants, solution providers and financial institutions, and to also provide a central source of shared intelligence and insights.
Insurtech SchemeServe has unveiled two new board members. Simon Cowling, previously head of engineering and UX, is now a board director and chief technical officer. While, Sean Neal is now a board director and commercial director.
Virgin Money has added fintech Codat to its team of technology partners as it strengthens its digital business banking credentials. London-headquartered Codat’s financial technology offer will play a key role in allowing seamless and secure exchange of data between Virgin Money and its business bank customers.
Private markets specialist Truffle Invest and fintech Delio have partnered to offer a modular private markets funds solution to the wealth management industry. Together, they will now offer a bespoke private markets solution for banks, wealth managers and multi-family offices across Europe.
Meanwhile, Banking Circle has hooked up with e-commerce payment provider HIPS Payment Group Ltd in order to offer payment settlement with domestic payment rails. The partnership will equip HIPS to provide simplified payments for its global merchant base with users able to purchase goods or services in their own currency.
Aria Systems has announced an expanded cooperation with payments firm Worldline. The subscription billing software provider said merchants can more effectively mitigate fraud, reduce failed or delayed payments. Plus, it can offer customers an increased number of payment options, including ACH and direct debit in the UK.
VEON has forged a strategic global partnership with Mastercard to boost digital financial services in Russia, Pakistan, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Bangladesh. The partnership will support the financial and digital inclusion of traditionally underserved consumers in each geography.
Meanwhile, Bitstocks, the fintech scaleup, has enjoyed a transaction boost since partnering with payments-as-a-service fintech Modulr. Monthly transaction volumes have increased sevenfold and its Gravity platform now has over £5million assets under management.
Finally, digital trade finance bank Anglo-Gulf Trade Bank has chosen CLM provider Fenergo to deploy its new platform. Fenergo says its solution can help ATB expediate onboarding while providing digital and frictionless client experiences.
Investments and Funding
Israeli fintech TenureX has started a pre-seed financing round with the first $1milliion backed by VentureIsrael. Previous investors include Plug and Play, and Hack VC. The funds will boost the company’s R&D and launch its platform with clients in the second quarter of 2021.
Balance has unveiled a self-serve digital checkout platform for B2B companies following $5.5million in seed funding. Investors include Lightspeed, Stripe, Y-Combinator, Affirm and PayPal co-founder Max Levchin. Balance said it makes offering flexible payments methods and terms as easy as using a credit card.
While, Aryza has announced a strategic investment in Back to Credit, an authorised debt solution provider. Back to Credit said the partnership offers the opportunity to combine and grow our debt advisory services with Aryza’s financial software.
Mergers and acquisitions
United Fintech has entered the market data and regtech space with the acquisition of German fintech, TTMzero. United Fintech has taken a 25 per cent stake in the market leading firm, with the intention of increasing to 80 per cent over the next three years.
“The acquisition is a key milestone in our quest to help banks to digitise their operations and facilitate the implementation of innovative, cost-saving capital markets products.”
ThoughtWorks, a global software consultancy, has agreed to acquire Fourkind, a privately-held Finnish consulting services firm. The acquisition will expand ThoughtWorks’ European footprint, as well as its ability to support and service clients in Finland, the Netherlands and the Nordics.