The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup this Tuesday delivers you the most recent job moves, partnerships and funding updates.
Crypto exchange BitMEX has welcomed Rupertus Rothenhaeuser as its new chief commercial officer. He will spearhead BitMEX’s plan to expand into spot, brokerage, custody and information products as well as establish the BitMEX Academy. Rothenhaeuser previously served as CEO at Crypto Finance (Brokerage) AG.
Dropp, the digital micropayment transaction platform, has appointed Richard Re and Robert Flohr. The two will join Dropp’s advisory board comprising top media, cloud computing and fintech professionals. Dropp says the pair share its vision of next generation digital payments.
Scienaptic AI, the AI-powered credit decision platform provider, has deployed its technology for fintech Uni Cards. This implementation will let Uni Cards expand credit access in India by providing instant decisions to applicants. Scienaptic says its credit decisioning platform helps Uni Cards experiment and test-and-learn faster.
Cantaloupe, a digital payments and software services company for the retail market, has partnered with HIVERY, a data-science company. The partnership will enhance machine merchandising decisions to help operators drive improved vending machine performance.
B4B Payments, the payments provider, has joined the Mastercard Fintech Express Programme. As part of the Mastercard Developers initiative, the programme provides support in obtaining licensing for issuing Mastercard prepaid, debit and credit cards either directly with Mastercard or through its qualified ‘Express Issuance’ partners.
Mergers and acquistions
Worldline, the payments firm, has completed its acquisition of Axepta Italy. Worldline has taken over 80 per cent of the merchant acquiring entity of BNL in Italy. As part of the deal, more than 100 payment experts will be integrated into the global team of 20,000 Worldliners.
The Ardonagh Group has agreed to acquire MDS Group, an insurance broker and risk management advisor. Ardonagh intends to fund the acquisition with a combination of equity and debt. MDS is also the founding member and a shareholder of Brokerslink, a network of brokers and speciality risk and consulting firms operating in 122 countries.
Insights and research
Bitcoin mining uses eight times more electricity than Google and Facebook combined, according to data from Tradingplatforms.com. It says the crypto devours 143 terawatt-hours of power annually. Bitcoin also overshadows the energy needs of entire countries. Its energy demands are higher than those of Norway and Switzerland.
Funding and investment
Cion Digital, developers of the enterprise SaaS blockchain orchestration platform, has closed a $12million seed capital raise. The capital will be utilised to expand R&D resources as well as accelerate the rollout of crypto financing and payment solutions. The round was led by Green Visor Capital and 645 Ventures.
Verofax Limited, an asset digitisation and traceability solutions provider, has closed a $1.5million pre-Series A round by international investors led by Benson Oak Ventures. 500 Startups, Wami Capital and Vernalis Capital also joined the round. The funds will be used to expand the company’s sales and marketing activities on a global level.
Fintech Ampla secures $40million in Series funding co-led by VMG Partners and Forerunner Ventures. It brings the company’s total funding to $380million in equity and debt financing. Ampla plans to increase its headcount by 100 per cent over the next three to six months, from 35 to 70 employees.
Fintech platform iCapital Network has recently closed a $50million funding round led by WestCap. Apollo and Temasek also invested in the round. It values the company in excess of $6billion. Other existing investors are also expected to make follow-on commitments to iCapital this year.
The Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) will become a crypto zone and regulator for cryptocurrencies and other virtual assets. The move by the DWTC is part of a drive by Dubai to create new economic sectors. The DWTC will collaborate with the private sector and relevant entities in Dubai to create an attractive environment for the sector, as well as enforce rigorous standards for investor protection.
Digital money transfer service ZEN.COM powered by Mastercard has introduced the conversion of fiat money into digital assets. It has also launched the transfer of fiat currencies to any digital wallet servicing BTC, ETH, or USD-T. The service will work seamlessly with digital wallets and exchanges that service the assets supported by ZEN.COM.
Wealth Stack is taking part in the Independent Community Bankers of America’s (ICBA) fourth annual ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator, in partnership with The Venture Center. The 16-week programme fosters fintech-community bank collaboration and features a four-week incubator as well as a 12-week accelerator. WealthStack partners with community banks to offer consumers access to a financial wellness platform.