The Fintech Times News Roundup
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This Week in Fintech: TFT Bi-Weekly News Roundup 24/02

The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup sees Currencycloud unveil a new country manager for Australia, while payments unicorn Nium partners with payment service provider ECOMMPAY.

Company updates

Cross-border payments firm Thunes has ramped up its global expansion plans with a new regional hub in Miami. Thunes also recently appointed Jenna Wyer as senior vice president for the Americas, who will spearhead the Singapore firm’s growth strategy in Latin America. The company has also established local partnerships in Brazil, Mexico, Colombia and Costa Rica.

Onfido, the identity verification and authentication provider, celebrates after growing revenue 90 per cent year-over-year to more than $100million. It also achieved 134 per cent year-over-year growth in the US. Plus, Onfido’s digital identity checks have soared, hitting 150 million. Meanwhile, the company has expanded its workforce by 50 per cent to 600 employees.

Partnerships

PXP Financial partners with US esports betting service Esports Entertainment Group. The paymenr firm will offer gateway services including cards for Esports customers to deposit or withdraw cash from an online real money gaming account. PXP Financial will also introduce alternative payment methods for provisions, such as instant bank-to-bank payments for pay-ins and pay-outs.

Finastra has forged a partnership with financial services provider DataGear to enable corporate banks to rationalise core operations, automate compliance and reduce costs. DataGear will provide its customers with Finastra’s solutions, Fusion Corporate Channels and Fusion Trade Innovation to help banks strengthen their services and grow their business.

Squirro, the augmented intelligence solutions provider, is supplying the European Central Bank with an augmented intelligence solution. It has also revealed the acquisition of US startup deal sourcing platform open.exchange, expanding Squirro’s reach in the US.

Wallet Handcash has partnered with the US-based payment firm Circle and Canadian fintech Fabriik. Handcash says that by integrating Fabriik’s Weave API into the client onboarding experience, it provides BSV liquidity in-app and the functionality to trade crypto seamlessly,

Motor insurance firm Hastings Direct has adopted what3words technology. Hastings Direct can now add their what3words address to their claims, which is expected to help claims be dealt with more efficiently.

what3words

Further partnerships

MX, the financial data platform, reveals Deposits.com, has plumped for its account linking, personal financial management, insights and embedded financial wellness products. Their partnership will ‘level the playing field for community banks, credit unions and community developers seeking financial innovation and inclusion’.

Verifone extends partnership with ReceiptHero across the Nordics. The expansion of the partnership enables ReceiptHero to support merchants across each Nordic market and provide further adoption of digital receipts. Since partnering with Verifone in 2018, ReceiptHero has signed more than 3,000 Finnish merchant locations onto the platform.

monday.com announces stategic alliance with KPMG. The new partnership combines the business insights of KPMG with the technological innovation of monday.com Work OS to help businesses around the world digitally transform.

Meanwhile, Payhawk, the platform that combines expense, payment and invoice management, and nhs* group, a global tax and accounting firm, have launched Scaling Up, a guide to opening an entity in Germany. It is aimed at startups, scaleups and growing SMEs, and includes guidance on the benefits of launching in the country.

Global payments unicorn Nium has partnered with payment service provider ECOMMPAY. The partnership will enable ECOMMPAY to offer payouts to merchants in various regions, made directly to the bank accounts of a user. The integration offers merchants a closed-loop system where the entire payment journey is managed in one dashboard. 

Funding and investments

London-based OCR Labs, a provider of digital identity verification, has bagged a $30million Series B. The new funding comes from Equable Capital. With this new injection of capital, the company – which now counts London as its HQ – is expanding into the US. OCR Labs’ technology provides fully automated identity verification through ID document validation combined with facial biometrics.

LiveMore Capital, the mortgage lender for over-50s, has agreed a £275million senior funding line with NatWest Markets. The financing will facilitate LiveMore’s portfolio growth and loan originations for its interest-only mortgage products. This funding will also support LiveMore’s recently announced term end interest only mortgage.

PrimaryBid has secured $190million in Series C funding, driving its valuation to more than $500million. The fintech platform plans to expand its offering across continental Europe, leveraging partnerships with ABN AMRO as well as Euronex. It also plans to launch in new geographies including the US. Key executive hires, including general managers for North America and the EU, will also be announced in the coming months.

SeMI Technologies, an ING Ventures spinout company, has closed a $16million Series A financing co-led by New Enterprise Associates and Cortical Ventures. This investment follows a previously unannounced $1.6million seed financing in 2020. SeMi specialises in vector databases.

More funding news

Clickatell, a mobile communications and chat commerce platform, has secured $91million in a Series C funding round. This round was led by Arrowroot Capital, with participation also from Kennedy Lewis Investment Management, Endeavor Global and Harvest. It will use the capital for accelerated development and innovation of its Chat Commerce offering, as well as to expand its footprint in the US. Clickatell will also scale its sales and marketing efforts.

Umazi, the due diligence platform automating enterprise identity verification, has secured $1million investment from Innovate UK and other angel investors. The regtech startup’s will use the funding to set a global standard for cross-industry digital identity and compliance.

Scalapay has raised $497million in Series B investment funding. The round was led by Tencent and Willoughby Capital. Additional participation also came from Tiger Global, Gangwal, Moore Capital, Deimos and Fasanara Capital. It aims to double its number of employees by the end of the year.

Job moves

Rory MacleanFintech Currensea has created a new head of charity and corporate partnerships role to develop its ‘powered by’ offering for charities and corporate partners. Rory Maclean joins from fundraising platform Givergy and will lead on expansion of programme enabling charities to increase donor base.

Canadian fintech Buckzy Payments appoints Malina Amand as its head of internal compliance audit. Amand’s focus is to ensure the company continues its current practices and adheres to rigorous financial regulatory guidelines and policies. Amand’s arrival follows the appointment last month of Carlos Garcia as chief operating officer.

B2B payments firm Currencycloud has named Nick Briscoe as its new country manager for Australia. Formerly the Australian MD of Finalto, Briscoe will help the firm obtain a licence in Australia, while also working with the wider APAC team to build out the infrastructure required to service new and existing customers in Australia and the region. Currencycloud has also joined Fintech Australia.

Coinme, a cryptocurrency cash exchange in the US, appoints Brian Reisbeck as its new chief compliance officer. Reisbeck will guide the organisation in maintaining regulatory compliance standards during the next stage of its growth and international expansion.

Launches and product updates

Digital bank Zopa has launched a new savings account to help Brits ‘tap into the £225billion stockpile of ‘dead money’ sitting idle. The Zopa Smart Saver offers a 0.72 per cent return for immediate access to savings – 72 times the standard high street offering. Customers can choose to boost their rates all the way up to 1.05 per cent by locking their money away for longer with a notice functionality.

Meanwhile, Moneybox, the app-based digital wealth manager, has launched 12 new exchange traded funds (ETFs). Since its launch in 2016, Moneybox has seen exponential growth and supports a community of more than 750,000 customers. ETFs are currently only available to its Stocks & Shares ISA customers.

Engine B, the next-generation AI-driven audit technology company, has launched a data ingestion and standardisation tool, the EB Integration Engine. Data ingestion and standardisation tool speeds up reconciliation and simplifies data preparation for auditors

Author

  • Claire is an experienced editor and writer with 25 years of experience in the publishing industry. As a tech journalist, Claire has covered every subject possible over the years, from the launch of broadband and next generation mobile networks to the arrival of the metaverse and Web3.

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