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UK Fintech News Round up: The Latest Stories 16/02

Each week we take a look at some of the latest fintech news to hit the UK sector. This week, Brits lose £2.4billion to fraudsters in 2021 and Clearpay partners with Roksanda to create a London Fashion week NFT.

81% of Brits would switch banks following a bad experience

Okta and Statista found that 81% of consumers would be willing to switch banks after an incident, such as the implementation of additional fees (45%), a data breach (41%), or poor customer service (39%). Only 10% display loyalty to their current bank by stating that there is nothing that could lead them to switch to a different provider.

A huge majority (86%) of UK consumers have an online bank account, including almost a fifth (18%) with a digitally-native challenger bank, rising to nearly a third (29%) of those aged 18-29. Most Brits (61%) admit to interacting with banks and financial services more digitally than physically over the past year – some because Covid-19 made it inevitable (36%), and others because they found it more convenient (26%).

“Digital banking adoption was already well underway, and the pandemic has accelerated changes in financial services that are here to stay,” comments Ian Lowe, Head of Industry Solutions at Okta. “However, this has spurred higher expectations from consumers in tandem. Convenience has driven Brits online, but as a result, they want security, simplicity and reliability from their digital banking experience. If not, they won’t hesitate to make the switch to a competitor – something even easier now with the help of Open Banking.”

Novus raises $5 million in 9 months and is now officially live in the UK

UK challenger bank Novus has closed its crowdfunding round after reaching a total of over $3 million, successfully beating its initial target of $1.2 million by over 250%.

As a result of this round, the ‘impact’ banking app has raised $5 million total capital to date and is now actively onboarding users across the UK.

As the first digital banking app in the UK to become a certified B Corporation, Novus is now live on both the App Store and Google Play Store and is continuing to rapidly onboard users. 

Co-founder and CEO of Novus, Hristian Nedyalkov, explained: “Since raising our first capital in late spring 2021, we have successfully built our own proprietary core banking infrastructure through various milestones including partnering with Visa and Railsbank, receiving regulatory approval from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and welcoming over 150 sustainable brands to our in-app marketplace.

 “We initially launched our crowdfunding campaign in December 2021 – nine months after securing the pre-seed investment – with the aim to attract like-minded investors and early adopters to join us on our journey to help shape the future. We began overfunding almost immediately, after achieving 100% of our $1.2 million target within minutes, and we couldn’t be prouder. We feel incredibly encouraged by the response to our crowdfunding campaign as we bring the Novus mission to the UK market.”

Brits lose £2.4billion to fraudsters in 2021

eCommerce FraudThe personal finance experts at money.co.uk have warned that UK residents have lost more than £2.4billion as a result of fraud and cybercrimes in 2021.

Fraud and cybercrime have rocketed over the past year as crime reports soared from 35,739 reported cases in 2020 to 445,357 in 2021, with reported losses totalling £2.4billion, a 174% increase from 2020.

Almost 1 in 5 of crimes committed in 2021 were related to online shopping fraud. Over the year, crimes in this category resulted in £71.5million of losses, with the average victim losing £806. The highest number of reported cases for this category fell in the first quarter of the year (January – March) with 28,173 cases at the peak of the pandemic. Financial investment fraud victims were hit the hardest in 2021 with total losses exceeding £394.1million, and the average victim losing £27,763.

Clearpay partners with Roksanda to create a London Fashion week NFT

For London Fashion Week, RTW label Roksanda has partnered with Clearpay, LFW’s Principal Sponsor, to bring digitisation, accessibility and innovation to fashion lovers everywhere. Together, the duo has exclusively created the demi-couture finale look from Roksanda’s forthcoming show in the form of an NFT. The idea originated from Clearpay, who worked collaboratively with Roksanda and the Institute of Digital Fashion to bring the project to life as a first foray for both Clearpay and Roksanda to enter the metaverse. 

Nick Molnar, Co-Founder and CEO of Clearpay said: A big part of our commitment to London Fashion Week is ensuring that fashion is accessible to consumers, and by partnering with Roksanda and the Institute of Digital Fashion this season, we’re able to do that in quite an exciting way. Collectively we’ve transformed their FW22 demi couture look into an NFT, giving consumers unparalleled access to high end fashion that simply wasn’t available to them before. We’re proud to be able to help democratise fashion, and enable consumers to buy, interact, and engage with ROKSANDA’s artistry in such an innovative way. It’s exciting to see this all come to life at such an important moment in the British fashion calendar.

Official state pension statistics find women more dependent on pension credit than men

The latest quarterly Government pension statistics reveal the average amounts people receive from the State Pension and Pension Credit. It found that of the 1.4 million people receiving Pension Credit (PC), representing a total of 1.6 million beneficiaries including partners, two-thirds are women. 

Becky O’Connor, Head of Pensions and Savings, interactive investor, said: “Changes to the state pension in 2016 levelled the playing field for women in terms of how much they typically receive. But they still get below-average amounts on both the New and Basic State Pension. Meanwhile, the greater proportion of women in receipt of Pension Credit points to the overall greater dependence on state support among older women.

 “The gender pension gap in the workplace is caused by women earning less and being more likely to take time out of work for childcare and other care demands. The consequence of this is more women being dependent on the state later in life. However, they usually get less here, too, because they have often taken more time out of work. Policies that help to redress the gender pension gap in the workplace should mean that fewer women have to rely on benefits to support them in old age.”

3 in 4 Gen Z suffers from poor mental health because of chaotic personal finances

74% of Gen Z admit that managing their finances is causing them to suffer poor mental health, with half (50%) also saying they deliberately avoid checking their bank account, according to the new research by W1TTY.

The struggles are particularly bad among women, with 82% of 18 to 24-year-old women saying managing their personal finances causes stress and anxiety.

Ammar Kutait, Founder and CEO of W1TTY, said: “Our data shows that many young people are struggling to manage their finances and need better support. W1TTY is solely based on this proposition. We don’t want our younger generation feeling anxious or worried about money – it could have significant long-term consequences.

“We want to turn money management into something positive through W1TTY, to ultimately support a healthier mindset when dealing with personal finances.”

Cynergy Bank reaches £3bn lending milestone

SME Lending (Image Source: p2pfinancenews.co.uk)Cynergy Bank has reached a lending milestone having grown to £3bn by continuing to support SME’s, property entrepreneurs and homeowners.

Nick Fahy, CEO of Cynergy Bank commented, “Lending over £3bn is a huge accomplishment and we are very proud of the progress we have made to date. Although the pandemic has been challenging for many businesses, we have witnessed the resilience of UK SME’s as they continued to borrow to fund investment for the future of their businesses. Cynergy Bank has gone from strength to strength, we have grown during a period of restricted risk appetite and our book has remained resilient through the economic uncertainty brought by the pandemic. Our aim at Cynergy Bank is to create a human digital bank that provides a personalised service to our customers which is enhanced by the latest technology. I am proud of the support we have given and will continue to give to these businesses especially during a period that saw much uncertainty.”

Author

  • Polly is a journalist, content creator and general opinion holder from North Wales. She has written for a number of publications, usually hovering around the topics of fintech, tech, lifestyle and body positivity.

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