The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup takes a look at the latest international fintech stories. PagoFX unveils international money transfer service for UK SMEs, while AI-powered asset manager FinaMaze launches in the UAE.
PagoFX, the low-cost international money transfer service, is now available to UK SMEs. PagoFX is part of PagoNxt, an autonomous business created by Banco Santander to compete with global digital payments platforms. It launched for UK individuals in April this year and was extended to UK sole traders in June.
FinaMaze has unveiled an AI-powered robo asset manager for the MENA region. FinaMaze, regulated by Abu Dhabi Global Market’s Financial Services Regulatory Authority, aims to deliver a ‘highly intuitive, exclusive and trusted investment experience’. The approach is centered around each investor’s persona.
Raseedy is the first independent licensed digital wallet in Egypt, in partnership with saib Bank and Mastercard. The Raseedy wallet provides users with multiple digital financial services, including money transfer, bill payment, and online card-less digital payment, international remittances, in-store and distant merchant payment via QR codes.
Mashreq Bank and Mastercard have launched Tap On Phone for SMEs, which turns Android smartphones into secure payment acceptance devices for contactless cards, mobile wallets and smartwatches. The innovation is part of a wider omni-channel ‘SME in a Box’ service launched earlier this year in the Middle East & Africa region.
Italian payments firm SIA and the Central Bank of Iceland have unveiled a real-time gross settlement system and instant payment platform. The technology infrastructure is able to process up to five million daily payments.
Partnerships and Collaborations
Regtech platforms TruNarrative and kompany join forces to enable swifter anti-money laundering compliance for regulated businesses around the world. TruNarrative’s decisioning and orchestration solution now includes kompany’s global register network for AML compliance.
Virgin Money has hooked up with Redspire to build its business banking arm. Redspire’s customer engagement and intelligence platform will help develop new digital solutions for Virgin Money.
Meanwhile, multi-currency bank FinecoBank partners with sustainable investing leader Robeco to expand fund offering. Fineco customers can now access Robeco’s active investing products which focus on the expanding sustainable investing space.
CanETH, one of the largest stakers in the beacon chain for the ‘Genesis launch’ of Ethereum 2.0, has announced a partnership with trading and exchange platform Alt 5 Sigma. Alt 5 will give its customers access to the Ethereum 2.0 launch by integrating with the CanETH Staking platform. While, CanETH has offered the Genesis block validators exclusively to the Alt 5 Community.
Dubai International Financial Centre FinTech Hive has signed a landmark agreement with Israel’s FinTech-Aviv. Both parties will work together on events, knowledge sharing, talent development and facilitating mutual introductions and referrals for firms keen to expand in each respective jurisdictions.
Insurtech Getsafe is partnering with GoCompare in order to make its app-based insurance more accessible to the UK market. The Getsafe app is available to customers 24/7 and 365 days a year, allowing them to file claims or change their coverage in real time.
Research and Insight
New research reveals more than half of 18-34 year olds using buy now pay later (BNPL) have missed a payment. While nearly two thirds say BNPL is making them spend more, potentially increasing their chances of getting into debt. The majority of consumers want more regulation and education around BNPL personal finance products.
In two months fintech Paysera has sold €1.4million worth of physical gold. According to Paysera, even though gold buyers can collect their purchased gold coins and bars or have them delivered, the majority keep their precious metals at the company’s storage facilities.
Funding and Investments
London fintech Primer secures £14million Series A for low-code payments infrastructure. Primer will use the funds to expand business development efforts internationally, as well as scale its remote-first team. New investment brings Primer’s total funding to £17.8million, weeks after the launch.
British Business Investments has committed £10million in new funding to Newable Ventures and Bristol Private Equity Club to fund early stage businesses across the UK. In the past three years, the pair have participated in more than 60 investments combined, totalling over £40million. While, they now hold stakes in companies, such as Cognism, Hummingbird, Rovco and Inductosense.
Wealth container platform Vauban raises £1.6million in seed funding. Tech investor Pi Labs led the investment, joined by Kima Ventures, Westloop Ventures, Argonautic Ventures and UFP Fintech.
Railsbank appoints Louisa Murray as Chief Operating Officer for UK and Europe to capitalise on its growth in the region. It is a promotion for Louisa, previously the Vice President and Head of Sales, and follows the company’s latest growth funding round and acquisition of Wirecard Card Solutions’ card technology, UK and Europe.
Ian Rogers, formerly the chief digital officer at luxury brand LMVH, is now chief experience officer at French crypto hardware and software maker Ledger. His mission is to expand Ledger’s consumer business as well as help bring cryptocurrency ownership to the masses.
AI company BlackSwan Technologies has appointing veterans from HSBC and Splunk to key leadership roles to help oversee the company’s global expansion. Christy Wilson, the former VP of Product Operations at Splunk, joins as SVP of Product. Ayan Kar, formerly the Global Head of Digital Product Data and Analytics at HSBC, has also been named SVP of Data and Analytics, Financial Services. The new appointments come on the heels of the company’s recent launch of ELEMENT, the world’s first AI operating system.
Enterprise connectivity platform Yapily has today announced that Martin Threakall, previously the co-founder and Chief Operating Officer at Modulr, will join the executive team as Chief Operating Officer. He will now help lead Yapily’s European expansion.
Merchant dispute technology specialist, Chargebacks911 continues to drive its ambitious growth plans in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region with the appointment of its new Director of Business Development, APAC – Jia Min Tan.
And digital payments platform for the insurance industry One Inc has announced several additions to its executive team. These include: Jig Patel as president and chief operations officer (COO), Paul Schmidt as chief financial officer (CFO), Kathy Tuite as chief marketing officer (CMO), and Kevin Ostrander as chief sales officer (CSO). The C-suite expansion follows its August acquisition of Invenger and February recapitalisation by Great Hill Partners.
The Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) has launched the CBUAE FinTech Office in order to develop a mature fintech ecosystem within the UAE. H.E. Abdulhamid M. Saeed Alahmadi, governor of CBUAE, said the Office would also accelerate the transformation of digital payments and support financial inclusion.
SINNAD, a third-party payment service provider, has migrated one of the largest Islamic banks in Bahrain to its platform. SINNAD partnered with Compass Plus to enable it to offer a flexible and hassle-free Shari’ah compliant payments processing platform.
Finally, Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority is changing its name to the Saudi Central Bank. The new Saudi Central Bank Law Maintaining will promote monetary stability, economic growth, as well as confirms it is responsible for setting the monetary policy.