The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup on Thursday offers a healthy dose of the latest fintech announcements.
Jephtah Chidozie-Uche, co-founder and CTO of Kippa, the fintech startup, has been accepted into Forbes Technology Council, an invitation-only organisation. Members are chosen for the depth and diversity of their experience, as well as a track record of successfully impacting business growth metrics.
Digital wallet HyperJar appoints Amabel Polglase as chief marketing officer. Polglase will be responsible for building HyperJar’s brand and growing customer numbers in the UK. Polgase has previously held roles at Facebook, Curve and Zilch.
Goji Investments, the technology investment platform, has named Aidan Connolly as independent non-executive director. Most recently, he served as CEO of Alter Domus Group, a provider of fund and corporate services for the alternative investment industry. He has also held executive board roles at My Travel Group, Sodexo UK, Worldpay and Wilko.
Meanwhile, Equiniti, a provider of shareholder, pension, remediation and credit technology, appoints Martin Flanigan as CEO for the Americas. Flanigan most recently served as president and CEO at AST. Flanigan will be responsible for driving strategic growth initiatives.
Fintech group Mode Global Holdings names Rita Liu as CEO. Liu has held leadership roles at fintech giant Alipay in Asia, the US, Canada and was CEO in the UK before joining Mode as chief commerical officer in 2020. Liu will drive Mode forward and ensure the company delivers on its short term growth targets, as well as its long term vision to become a disruptor that bridges fintech and crypto.
Funding and investment
Maven Equity Finance has invested £500,000 in Yimba. Yimba has developed a digital wallet technology that lets banks deliver personalised banking services via mobile banking and payment wallet integrations. The funding will drive product development, create new jobs and help Yimba expand its team.
Detected, the critical infrastructure component for global KYB compliance, has raised an additional £1.5million in three weeks. This adds to the £2million seeded in previous funding rounds. The funding round was led by Love Ventures. Detected can find and verify any registered company in the world, using just the company name and city.
DNABLOCK has closed its second seed round of $7million led by Sfermion, Solana Ventures, Animoca Brandsas well as Non-Fungible Labs. Funding will further scale and deploy Replikant, its flagship technology offering. Additionally, DNABLOCK will establish an LA-based creator studio to launch new NFT talent, and add several key leadership roles.
Nayya, the insurance benefits experience and healthcare management platform, bags a $55million Series C financing round led by ICONIQ Growth. Also joining the round – Transformation Capital, Felicis Ventures and SemperVirens. The latest funding will be used to expand partnerships with major healthcare systems, bolster collaboration with employers and leverage approved healthcare patents.
Further funding news
Payhawk becomes first ever Bulgarian unicorn after raising $100million in a round led by Lightspeed Venture Partners. The additional funding extends Payhawk’s Series B round to $215million. Payhawk’s Series B three months ago was the second largest Series B for a B2B company in Central and Eastern Europe. The fintech will use the funds to further grow its product team.
Saudi Arabia-based crowdfunding platform Funding Souq has closed a $2.5million seed round with investors including Amal Dokhan, Omar Aljeraisi and Christian Kunz. Existing investors include Mazin Alzaidi, Musaab Hakami and IslamicFinanceGuru.
Meanwhile, VC firm Sure Valley Ventures has completed an £85million first close of a £95million UK software technology fund. This includes a £50million investment from the British Business Bank’s Enterprise Capital Funds programme. The company is also opening an office in Manchester to help access metaverse and AI opportunities in cities including Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield and Newcastle.
Fintech Delio has raised a further $8.3million to enable financial institutions to create greater investor access to alternative assets. Additional investment from early-backers Maven Capital Partners brings the total equity funding raised by Delio to $15.5million.
TotallyMoney, the credit app, has partnered with Cashplus, the SME-focused digital challenger to launch a cashback credit card. Enabled by an API integration between the two parties, the product features guaranteed rates, guaranteed limits, and eligibility checking.
Fintech-focused bank and payments service provider LHV UK has plumped for Tuum (formerly Modularbank) to provide the core infrastructure for the entirety of its banking operations. LHV UK supports over 200 financial services, including Airwallex, Coinbase, Currencycloud, Monese and Wise. Tuum’s platform will handle its crucial core banking operations.
Embedded finance platform Alviere has unveiled its first automotive customer – AutoPayPlus, a loan payment service. AutoPayPlus will leverage the Alviere platform to offer new financial products and services exclusive to their dealership partners.
Investment platform Freetrade is launching in Sweden. The app will launch a closed beta for people signed up to the waitlist in the coming months, before rolling out to the general public. It offers Swedish investors commission-free access to thousands of European, UK and US stocks and ETFs.
Zest AI, an AI-powered software firm for underwriting, has launched Zest Race Predictor (ZRP), an open-source version of its machine learning algorithm that estimates the race/ethnicity of an individual using only their full name and home address as inputs.
Meanwhile, Mesh Payments, a provider in the corporate payment and spend management space, has unveiled its Plug & Pay Visa Business card which ties a physical and a virtual card. The new card program offers a numberless physical Visa Business card that can be linked with Mesh virtual cards and swapped out on the fly.
Finally, Soldo, the European pay and spend automation platform has launched Google Pay for customers in the UK and Italy. The integration with Google’s technology allows a Soldo physical or virtual card to be added to Google Pay mobile wallets on Android smartphones, enabling secure and seamless payments and convenient shopping experiences for Soldo customers.