The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup on Thursday brings you a dose of the latest fintech appointments, investment rounds and budding partnerships.
Fintech platform Airwallex has expanded its US team with two key senior hires across its business development, partnerships, legal and compliance teams. Ravi Adusumilli is now SVP global head of partnerships & business development, while Jas Randhawa is global head of financial crime compliance.
10x Banking appoints three senior sales and marketing leaders. Lucy Heavens joins as chief marketing officer, while Tom Phillips is senior vice president, business development, Europe. Meanwhile, Nicholle Lindner joins as regional director, APAC. The hire follows a $187million Series C funding round.
Scandinavian fintech Inpay has strengthened its management team with a slew of hires including Thomas Jul as CEO. Charlotte Bender will also join the company as the new CFO from 1 March 2022. The leadership team is also strengthened with Jens Heurlin as group general counsel and Camila Witt as chief risk & compliance officer.
Fintech advisor Royal Park Partners has appointed Abhimanyu Toor and John Clark as co-managing directors, joining Aman Behzad in an expanded leadership team. Royal Park Partners has secured more than $1billion for its clients with marquee deals for firms including KoinWorks, BUX, TradeDepot, Divido and Yoco.
Mergers and acquisitions
Banking Circle has acquired Biller, the buy now, pay later startup for B2B payments. Biller becomes part of Banking Circle Group’s ecosystem but will continue to operate autonomously. Biller will now embark on a fast European-wide expansion, covering the UK, Germany, Belgium and Nordics in the first half of 2022.
DNA Payments, a payments provider, has snapped up payment solutions provider Kwalitas. DNA Payments’ fourth acquisition in 24 months boosts growth in the UK. The acquisition will also strengthen the product and service offering of Kwalitas.
ConsenSys acquires MyCrypto, a deep-rooted Ethereum interface, to team up with Web3 wallet, MetaMask. MetaMask and MyCrypto will combine their efforts under a shared banner. Engineers at both companies helped integrate and maintain public goods such as MetaMask’s phishing detection service, which utilises MyCrypto’s CryptoScamDB.
Amber Group scoops up DeCurret Inc., a cryptoasset exchange service provider. The acquisition marries Amber Group’s digital asset investing tools under WhaleFin, and DeCurret’s crypto exchange offering. Furthermore, Amber Group’s management of $5billion worth of digital assets on its platform will catalyse the adoption of digital assets in Japan.
Amount acquires Linear Financial Technologies, the premier SMB loan and account origination platform. With the acquisition, Amount creates a platform that can power both consumer and small business loan origination programs for financial institutions. Linear will rebrand and operate as Amount Small Business. Meanwhile, Sam Graziano, CEO of Linear, becomes head of amount small business.
Funding and investments
Low-code accounting platform LemonEdge secures a $4million funding round led by Blackstone. Existing investors, including Sidekick Partners, Lauren Iaslovits and Tikhon Bernstam, also took place. The financing increases capital raised to date to $7million, all within the first year of launch.
Payments platform Billhop has raised €10.5million, led by EQT Ventures. The funding will be used for hiring (particularly tech and marketing roles), customer acquisition and geographical expansion. Billhop processes €250million in transaction volumes annually. Last year, it doubled its team, including key hires from Stockholm’s pool of talent in fintech and payments.
Instajet partners with Currencycloud to make private aviation more accessible. Currencycloud enables Instajet to offer instant, guaranteed price reservations from the outset for both passengers and operators. The partnership also means Instajet can reach more jurisdictions.
Lithuania-based fintech startup iDenfy partners with European Merchant Bank. iDenfy will now handle EMBank’s remote ID verification procedures. With iDenfy’s services, EMBank will also ensure safety, security, and regulatory compliance.
Help AG, the cybersecurity arm of Etisalat Digital, has teamed up with Owl Cyber Defense, the edge security and cross domain solutions firm, to offer high-assurance network protection and secure data transfers to critical infrastructure.
Meanwhile, UK fintech Artesian : DueDil has secured a partnership with enterprise digital identity provider Umazi. The partnership combines Umazi’s open-source permissioned blockchain platform, with Artesian : DueDil’s Business Information Graph (B.I.G) to surface unique insights for advanced validation and verification at scale.
There’s also a partnership for fintech company FINCI and cards issuance leader Nium. The collaboration will enable real-time payments to new markets and improve services to existing regions for FINCI’s individual and business customers.
Fintech Cadence unveils a partnership with Fintel Connect. This will enhance the resources, offerings and capabilities that Fintech Cadence provides to the fintech startups it supports across Canada. Fintel Connect will leverage its marketing expertise specialised in financial services to help fintech companies within the Fintech Cadence ecosystem to maximise performance.
Aircash, the electronic money institution, has joined forces with payments platform, Paysafe. Paysafe’s
eCash solution, Paysafecash, can now be used by Aircash wallet users to top up their accounts directly with cash in 21 European countries.
Amazon India has signed an agreement with the NIF Incubation and Entrepreneurship Council, a technology business incubator. NIF aims to accelerate grassroots innovation, local economy and livelihoods across rural India. NIFientreC and Amazon will bring together experts from various fields to hold masterclasses and workshops.
Egyptian unicorn Fawry says its Fawry Accept product accounted for the largest percentage in the diversity of payment methods for the digital payments market in Egypt. It offers a variety of payment and instalment options through more than six different banks, valU or Premium Card.
Coadjute announces that CRM platform teclet, a wholly owned subsidiary of OnTheMarket, is joining the blockchain network for the UK property market. The news follows Coadjute’s recent announcement of a £6million investment funding round led by Praetura Ventures.
Allica Bank has revamped its commercial mortgage products to help improve access to finance. This includes cuts to rates on commercial mortgage products and increases LTVs and broker procuration fees. Allica Bank’s commercial and semi-commercial investment loans will now also have a maximum LTV of 75 per cent of vacant possession value across most property types.
Augeo has launched cryptocurrency platform Heaps. Heaps enables cardholders, consumers, employees and members to exchange loyalty rewards for leading cryptocurrencies. It also lets users purchase crypto with cash and through recurring deposits. Heaps can integrate into any loyalty programme.
Meanwhile, Apiture has launched the Apiture Digital Banking Platform, a suite of consumer and business banking solutions for US banks and credit unions. The platform brings together the strengths of the company’s existing products, Apiture Xpress and Apiture Open, into a single, cloud-based platform.