The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup this Tuesday takes a look at recent global fintech stories. Russia’s Mir Payment System signs an agreement with Network International to expand cashless payment acceptance in the UAE while
Etrading Software becomes registration authority for DTIs.
Deeptech scaleup causaLens has appointed Dr Hana Chockler, associate professor at King’s College London, as a senior researcher at its new artificial intelligence lab. The company, which recently released the world’s first causal AI platform, boasts the world’s largest causal AI research lab.
Payments provider SETL has hired Marjan Delatinne, the former head of banking at Ripple. She also previously held senior business developments roles at SWIFT and SWIFT gpi. Delatinne’s remit is to improve existing legacy technology in order to drive digital transformation across the payments industry.
Ben Foster is on the move to TrueLayer as the technology company’s VP of engineering. The former SVP of engineering at Checkout.com is responsible for managing and scaling the engineering team as well as executing TrueLayer’s technology strategy and roadmap.
Financial data firm Macrobond has added Howard Rees as its new chief commercial officer. Prior to Macrobond he was head of international sales at Burgiss. Rees will focus on Macrobond’s global growth plans, in addition to making macroeconomic intelligence more widely available for finance professionals.
Meanwhile, there’s a new CEO for digital health provider Reframe. Catherine McDermott, the former McKesson and Amazon director, has joined Reframe to drive its growth efforts, while strengthening its position in the market.
Finally, regtech firm Napier has appointed Andy Maguire, former HSBC group chief operations officer, to its advisory board. He will provide insight and strategic direction as the company continues its rapid global expansion. Recently, Napier was named the official anti-money laundering and counter terrorism financing technology platform for Australia Post.
Funding and investments
Fintech provider Episode Six has secured an additional $30million of investment. It comes nine months after the company secured $7million of its Series A funding round. Episode Six’s investors include HSBC, Mastercard, SBI Investment Co and Anthos Capital.
Vampr, the social music-tech platform, has announced a further £570,000 in funding. It takes its total investment raised to £1.9million ahead of its upcoming Series A. The 360° self-service platform for artists provides distribution, publishing, education and other digital services.
SME finance provider Maven Capital Partners has invested £1million into fintech platform Pockit Ltd. The investment, part of Pockit’s £15million Series B funding round, will help the business invest in its new Newcastle base, as well as embark on a recruitment drive. In addition, funding will support the platform as it rolls out new product enhancements.
Monite launches a finance management platform that automates accounting processes for SMEs after securing €1.1million in pre-seed funding. It connects to a company’s bank accounts in order to invoice clients, manage employee expenses, handle incoming bills and do accounting within the system.
Meanwhile, Maslife – a financial and wellness banking platform for b2c &b2b markets – has secured a seed capital raise of £3million. The investment brings Maslife’s total funding to more than £5million. It will be used to support its global growth ambitions, as well as product development and technological solutions.
Partnerships and collaborations
Russia’s Mir Payment System pens an agreement with Network International to expand cashless payment acceptance. Mir card payments are now accepted across the UAE following the agreement, which follows Network’s strategy to boost digital payment acceptance across the region.
Meanwhile, engagement banking platform provider Backbase has joined forces with pricing firm Zafin for banking customer personalisation. Backbase clients can now leverage Zafin to instantaneously deploy products with pricing optimised to each individual customer.
Banking group Tyme partners with JG Summit to launch digital bank for the Philippines. The launch follows Tyme securing a $110million Series B capital raise from Apis Growth Fund II and Gokongwei Family. JG Summit Holdings and Tyme will apply for a digital bank licence from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to expand financial access to underbanked and under-served Filipinos.
b8ta, a software-powered retailer, has forged a strategic collaboration with Middle East digital marketplace noon.com. The partnership will lead to the launch of new products to shoppers in the UAE. Research shows that 76 per cent of UAE shoppers make purchases via online marketplaces.
There’s a partnership for communications platform illumy and fintech company PayCertify. illumy will leverage PayCertify’s payment processing and fraud protection services in order to provide additional security, safeguards and payment options for its members.
Meanwhile, web browser Opera has hooked up with Israeli crypto-fiat solution provider Simplex to deliver in-browser crypto purchases. Following the partnership, Opera users can purchase cryptocurrencies directly from the browser. They can also set up personal cryptocurrency wallets to store the newly-purchased digital assets.
Veriff, a global identity verification provider, is partnering with Kueski, a fintech platform in Latin America. With its automated identity verification service, Veriff is helping Kueski to leverage risks, stay compliant and onboard clients smoothly without compromising safety.
Announcements and updates
Etrading Software, a provider of technology-led solutions for financial institutions, has been nominated to become the exclusive registration authority for the new International Organisation for Standardisation’s standard for digital token identifiers (DTIs). The identifiers conforming to the new standard, ISO 24165 DTI, will be vendor-neutral, open, freely available and global.
Banking technology firm SunTec has launch its first client advisory board. The inaugural board has members from ABSA, Bancolombia, Comcast, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, DBS Bank, First National Bank, Global Business Travel, Goldman Sachs, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Nordea Bank. Senior banking, telecom and travel executives representing six continents join as members.
Meanwhile, ADP launches ‘RollTM by ADP’, a mobile app for US small businesses to ‘do payroll without friction’. The new app utilises an AI-powered chat interface to turn traditional payroll management into a conversation that completes payroll in under a minute.
Early Warning Service and The Clearing House announce that Zelle transactions can now be cleared and settled over the RTP network. They say the integration enables financial institutions to enjoy instant settlement and simpler back-office processing, improving efficiency and reducing costs. Bank of America and PNC Bank are the first to send Zelle payments over the RTP network.
Mastercard cardholders in the UAE can now use Click to Pay, the next generation of e-commerce technology, to instantly checkout without the need to enter card credentials every time or to store sensitive information with different merchants. It’s the first country in the region to be supported by Mastercard on Click to Pay.
Finally, Mashreq Bank is named a market leader for its best in class transactional banking services by Euromoney. Mashreq attained ‘Market Leader’ position for the UAE and Middle East as part of the Euromoney Trade Finance Survey 2021.