This Thursday’s The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup delivers up a healthy dose of fintech updates from around the world.
SME digital finance platform Funding Options appoints Malcolm Leach as CTO following strongest quarter since start of the pandemic. He has previously held senior technology roles at Universal Music Group, Cap Gemini, Swiss Life AG, Virgin Media and iCrossing and joins Funding Options after three years at cash desposit platform Flagstone.
Avanish Sahai has joined the advisory board of tech company Finboot. Sahai is also on the board of Hubspot and is also a Fellow of Tidemark, the growth equity firm. Last year, Finboot closed a $3.6million fundraise.
Bink has strengthened its senior leadership team with the appointments of Jose Jimenez Mancha as chief commercial officer and Marty Kerr as regional head Asia Pacific. Bink says their experience will significantly support in accelerating growth as it brings on new banking partners in the UK as well as new markets, such as Australia.
Investment manager Triple Point has appointed Sean Brophy as new head of diect lending for its private credit team. With experience at Caple International and Lloyds Banking Group, Brophy will lead Triple Point Private Credit into its next growth phase.
Funding and investments
Daman Investments has raised a $120million fixed maturity plan as it expands across regional markets, creating a tailor-made fund for one of the GCC’s leading regional banks. The fund follows a series of major mandates that Daman has secured from institutional investors.
Cogni, a digital banking platform, has bagged a $23million Series A funding round. The strategic round was led by Hanwha Asset Management and CaplinFO with participation also from Solana Ventures. Cogni will use the funds to build its core technology and infrastructure, gain new users on the platform, as well as expand its suite of products and hire new talent.
Finbots.AI has raised a Series A round of $3million. This round saw the participation of a single investor – Accel. With this fundraise, Finbots.AI will look towards accelerating product enhancement, marketing as well as sales and customer support. The firm is also looking to recruit senior talent and expand its team across its offices.
Meanwhile, Ondo Finance has raised a $20million Series A to accelerate the adoption of DeFi among mainstream investors. The round was led by Founders Fund and Pantera Capital, with additional participation from Coinbase Ventures. The funding will help the company grow its current ecosystem and user base. Ondo is also expanding its product compatibility with other protocols.
Monspire, the London fintech, has raised a £600,000 funding round led by Fuel Ventures. The cash boost will enable Monspire to launch to market and rapidly onboard new businesses. The Monspire platform enables small businesses to predict their cashflow needs through its forecasting tool.
DataBP, the data licensing and subscription management platform, has partnered with Deutsche Börse Group to implement a digital data licensing and management platform to streamline business operations and optimise the customer experience for its market data and services business.
Fintech Skaleet has forged a partnership with Thunes, the cross border payments provider, to complement its existing ecosystem. Skaleet wanted to find a partner that could offer an instant, global payment service to both B2B and B2C customers. With Thunes, Skaleet can offer a wider range of payment services that connect directly to its customers’ accounts.
Orange Bank in France has selected Finastra’s corporate treasury management solution, Fusion KTP in the cloud. The move will enable the bank to harness a fully integrated treasury management platform. It also says moving to the cloud will enable the bank to run its treasury operations with increased agility.
UK-based Shufti, an identity verification solutions firm, has entered into a strategic partnership with Algerian mobile bank Banxy to provide a frictionless and secure onboarding experience for new and existing clients. Banxy says Shufti Pro’s AI-powered identity verification solutions enable it to verify and identify in a matter of seconds with accuracy and security.
W2, a global provider of regulatory compliance software, has announced a collaboration with Visa, the digital payments firm, to offer enhanced compliance solutions and tools for UK Platinum and Infinite business cardholders.
Meanwhile, Nordiska extends its partnership with Mambu. The Swedish credit institution extends partnership with Mambu for an additional seven years to continue to scale operations internationally. Nordiska and Mambu previously partnered in 2016 to replace custom-built legacy systems with a fully cloud-based infrastructure.
Finally, Network International (Network) has paired up with fintech Nayax to introduce an unattended self-service solution to its UAE merchants. Through the collaboration, Network and Nayax will enable seamless payment transactions at unattended self-service payment kiosks, letting customers select their desired product or service and pay using their preferred mode of debit or credit card.
Biometrics company Fingerprints has revealed its technology will be used and be a part of at least two new commercial biometric payment card launches in Morocco, announced by two of Morocco’s largest banks. Its technology was also used in a launch in Jordan last year.
Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) has welcomed Kraken, the global virtual assets exchange group, to its International Financial Centre. Kraken is the first virtual assets exchange group in the UAE to receive a full financial licence from ADGM. Kraken MENA aims to provide seamless access to virtual assets through regulated funding, trading, and custodial services in dirhams (AED).
Meanwhile, ADGM-based innovative asset management firm FinaMaze has announced the launch of its latest Islamic Smartfolio Series. FinaMaze clients can invest from $2,000 in the new product that reflects the Shariah investment principles. The first Smartfolio of the Islamic Series is the FinaMaze General Islamic Smartfolio.
Mergers and acquisitions
SEPAexpress, which provides white-labelled account-to-account (A2A) payments for payments service providers in Europe, has been acquired by Banking Circle Group. SEPAexpress will continue to operate autonomously and is also aiming for triple digit growth in 2022.