It’s The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup on Thursday 14 December 2023.
Fintech Pleo appoints Søren Westh Lonning as its new CFO. He has been working with Pleo in an advisory capacity to bolster its financial planning, capital structure and broader commercial efforts across the business. He joins at a period of high growth for Pleo driven by market expansion and investments to win mid-market customers.
Davies, a global financial services consulting firm, has appointed Eoin Gill as global relationship manager and partner. Most recently, Gill served as an MD at BNY Mellon within its asset servicing and digital business. His previous experience also included various roles at the private banking firm of Brown Brothers Harriman.
ClearBank, an enabler of real-time clearing and embedded banking for financial institutions, has named Megan Cooper (nee Caywood) as chief product officer. Cooper has previously worked at Barclays UK Business and Starling Bank. She is also a board member of UK Finance Digital, Technology, Cyber Products and Services team, and was named in Forbes 30 Under 30 in 2018.
The Hedera Council welcomes Charles Adkins as its new president. Adkins brings a wealth of experience in Web 3 technology – including roles at Aptos and Polygon – as well as in finance, government and consumer brands. Hedera is an open source, leaderless proof-of-stake network.
Flutterwave, the African payments technology company, has appointed Amaresh Mohan as chief risk officer, Stephen Cheng as EVP global expansion and payment partnerships and Amanda Ortega as head of compliance. The company has also announced the appointments of Steven Huynh as VP, global expansion and payment partnerships and Adewale Ayantoye as VP, risk management.
Global digital transformation consultancy Kin + Carta hires ex-Endava Nick Curran as director of business development. Joining Kin + Carta following a nine-year tenure at Endava, Curran steps into a similar role – tasked with expansion into new geographies, as well as finding, creating and converting demand for the digital transformation consultancy’s services.
HUAA Capital (DFM: SHUAA), a UAE asset management and investment banking platform, has appointed Hamda Eid AlMheiri to its board of directors. She joins the SHUAA board following a career spanning several years in private and public sector leadership roles. Her current position is with ADQ, an Abu Dhabi-based investment and holding company.
Spendesk Group names Stéphane Dehaies as CEO of Spendesk Financial Services. In his new role, Dehaies will also join the executive committee of Spendesk. Dehaies’ mission will be to develop Spendesk Financial Services in line with the group’s sustainable growth objectives, its customers and its partners. Before joining Spendesk, Dehaies worked at KPMG in the UK and Europe.
PEXX Global, the payments orchestration platform, has unveiled Carmela Borrotzu as senior vice president of finance. Borrotzu will oversee accounting, financial planning and analysis, treasury, tax, as well as investor relations functions. Prior to joining APEXX, Borrotzu served for eight years at Planet, a leader in unified commerce solutions for retail, where she held the position of SVP retail CFO.
Jeff Parker, Marqeta‘s SVP and managing director, is joining Paymentology as CEO. Before joining Marqeta, Parker was CEO at international payments company World First. His focus will be on building Paymentology’s position as the ‘global neo-processor of choice for fintechs, telcos, corporates and challenger banks’.
KYND Limited, a cyber risk management firm, and Consilium, an international (re)insurance broker, part of the Aventum Group, have forged a strategic partnership. Under this new collaboration, Consilium’s insurance brokers will leverage KYND’s cyber risk assessments to gain complete visibility into its prospective and existing clients’ organisational exposure.
MENA fintech cashew has teamed up with Mashreq to boost the UAE’s credit offering. This strategic partnership aims to introduce a pioneering financial solution, offering instant, high-value loans, while redefining consumer lending in the region. During its pilot phase, cashew is engaging with key healthcare and telecom providers to refine and perfect this innovative financing solution.
Northstake A/S, an asset service provider offering compliant staking products for institutions, has partnered with Kvarn Capital to provide delegated staking services to clients on the NEAR Protocol. Through this collaboration, Northstake will enable staking services for all of Kvarn X’s brokerage clients ranging from institutions to individual investors.
Fitness app WithU has revealed a partnership with Visa in the Latin America and Caribbean region (LAC). Under the partnership, WithU is a fitness technology partner as part of Visa’s customer loyalty programme. The partnership commences with a promotion that provides free access to WithU’s full library of 1,500-plus on-demand workouts for Visa Platinum, Visa Signature and Visa Infinite cardholders across 22 LAC countries.
Funding and investments
Fundbot, a fintech startup, has raised a $1.5million seed-funding round led by Hambro Perks Oryx Fund. There was also support also from Aditum Investment Management Limited, Flat6Labs, Middle East Venture Partners (MEVP), and PlusVC. The company targets significant expansion in the MENA region, initially in the UAE and Saudi Arabia, as well as Oman, Bahrain and Egypt in the future.
Estonian-based regtech Salv raises €3.9million. It brings its capital raised this year to €7.9million and total funding to €12.1million. The investment will fuel Salv‘s expansion in the UK, a market currently experiencing a sharp increase in authorised push payment (APP) fraud. Salv’s Bridge platform has achieved up to 80 per cent recovery in APP fraud cases.
Wealthtech platform Prosper has closed its first crowdfunding campaign, raising over £1million and topping up the £3.2million already raised. The round was 170 per cent oversubscribed and also hit its £600,000 target in just four hours. Investors include Monzo’s co-founder Tom Blomfield, Capital One’s co-founder Matt Cooper, as well as other fintech angels.
Meniga has raised €15million in Series D funding. The round included European banks Groupe BPCE and Crédito Agrícola, as well as VC group Omega ehf. Part of the capital injection will be used towards clearing existing debt, rendering Meniga almost debt-free. The funding will also be invested in the roll-out of Meniga’s strategy of further developing its core capabilities around data enrichment and hyper personalised insights.
Jenesys AI has bagged $1.1million in a pre-seed funding round. The round was led by London’s Twin Path Ventures, with participation also from Fuel Ventures, Antler, Hatcher+ in Singapore. The fresh capital will be deployed to engineering, customer success and expanding global payment compliance.
Unbiased, a UK marketplace for financial advice, has unveiled upgrades to its platform to enable IFAs to more effectively harness record demand for financial advice. New features are designed to enhance quality of leads and potential for conversion and offer advisers more flexibility. The suite of updates will be followed by a move to subscription-based pricing in January 2024.
Lerex, a provider of end-to-end payment solutions, has launched Google Pay for SWAPX cardholders. This development will enable both personal and business cardholders to add their cards to the Google Pay digital wallet, allowing them to make easy, fast and secure payments in stores, online, and in-app using their mobile devices.