Welcome to The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup on Tuesday 3 January 2023 bringing you the latest job hires and partnership updates.
Trive, the multi-asset investment platform, has appointed Dennis Austinat as its new DACH region MD. Based in its new Frankfurt office, Austinat will help to grow the business in the region. Trive also recently opened an office in Madrid, as part of its expansion plans.
Engagement banking fintech Backbase appoints Mark Appel as chief marketing officer. He was most recently CMO of CM.com. Appel will be responsible for supporting growth at Backbase as well as driving brand recognition. Backbase also recently hired Markwin Geneste as chief commercial officer and Roland Booijen as general manager of ecosystems.
Online pension provider PensionBee hires Becky O’Connor as director of public affairs. She was most recently head of pensions and savings at Interactive Investor, the investment platform. O’Connor is also chair of the Ethical Advisory Committee for Castlefield Investment Management.
Swift appoints Stephen Grainger as chief executive for Americas & UK. He was most recently executive vice president at Mastercard, leading the development and commercialisation of its global cross-border services business. Grainger will drive the region’s overarching direction and growth.
LHV UK, a banking service provider to fintechs, has tasked risk and data science consultancy Jaywing with creating its cloud-based data infrastructure. Jaywing will establish a data infrastructure and reporting suite in line with UK regulatory standards as well as optimise LHV UK’s AWS-based data infrastructure for regulatory reporting.
National Bonds, a UAE Shari’a-compliant savings and investment company owned by the Investment Corporation of Dubai, has partnered with Lulu Exchange. The partnership provides customers and employees the opportunity to embark on and accelerate their savings journey.
Digitt+, Pakistan’s first agriculture focused fintech, has approval to pilot launch its Electronic Money Institution (EMI). Digitt+ is powered by Akhtar Fuiou Technologies (AFT). It has partnered with FuiouPay, a payment solutions provider, to provide market-based alternative to the traditional banking system.
Fraud prevention startup iDenfy has partnered with mano.bank, the Lithuanian-based bank. iDenfy helps mano.bank swiftly onboard customers with a four-step ID verification process. mano.bank says the partnership means its users can enjoy a ‘secure, digitised customer onboarding experience’.
The Mauritius Africa FinTech Hub (MAFH), with the sponsorship of the Mauritius Commercial Bank (MCB), hosted its first national FinTech Ideation Competition. The event was part of MAFH’s Future FinTech Champions programme, a skills and capacity building initiative designed at growing future leaders for the fintech sector.
Singlife is appointed official insurer for the Ministry of Defence (MINDEF) and Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) Group Insurance Scheme. It provides life and personal accident insurance coverage for all MINDEF and MHA personnel.
Meanwhile, WadzPay has launched a digital customer support facility for clients around the globe. The new platform allows customers to log support calls on their own using a pre-designated login-id created by the WadzPay team. After that, the status of the support calls is updated automatically as other support staff attend the issue and close the call.
The Bureau Business Center (The Bureau), UAE’s first purpose-built female-focused co-working space, is now open in Dubai’s Gold & Diamond Park. It is co-founded by Dubai-raised sisters Nikita and Rhea Patel to create a distinct space that is welcoming, supportive, and encourages women to share space, ambition as well as energy.
Funding and investments
Tech investor Clive Mayhew has invested AU$1.2million to launch Play Today, a Web3 golf company. Play Today has developed a consumer digital wallet integrated into a golf scoring app, a golf NFT marketplace and a golf metaverse.
Lending and distribution platform SarvaGram has closed its Series C round at $35million. Investors including Elevar Equity, Elevation Capital, Temasek and TVS Capital Fund took part. SarvaGram plans to expand its distribution network as well as its on-ground franchisees.