Hello TWIF UK & Europe friends,
We have two upcoming happy hours in Europe in the new couple of weeks.
Please find another week of fintech news, financings and exits below.
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Highlights below of deals since the last post in the fintech space across the UK & Europe.
🇪🇺 Digital wealth app SageWealth raised a €500,000 pre-seed round from angels.
🇪🇺 Business tax reporting fintech Fairo raised €2m from Raiffeisen bank International.
🇪🇺 Crypto derivatives platform Bitlevex raised $50m from GEM Digital.
🇪🇺 Payments fintech Ibanway raised a €130k round from investors.
🇬🇧 Investing fintech Wombat raised a £4m Series A from Fuel Ventures.
🇬🇧 Embedded finance fintech Deposits raised a $5m seed round from Lightspeed, ATX and Cabal.
🇬🇧 Credit decisioning fintech finexos raised £695k from Growth Capital Ventures.
Challenger Banking 🚀
🇪🇺 Vivid Money received a Dutch investment licence in an acceleration of a move of German fintechs getting licence abroad.
🇬🇧 Revolut is enabling its Romanian customers to apply for loans. It also announced it has over 5m UK customers.
🇬🇧 Starling Bank is hiring 100 staff in Southampton.
🇬🇧 Atom Bank has reported a 49% increase in job applications and improved productivity since it moved staff to a 4-day work week six months ago.
🇬🇧Zopa bank hit £2bn deposits, two years after it launched its challenger bank.
Digital Assets ₿
🇪🇺 Binance filed for a licence with BaFin last week.
🌍 Ripple has partnered with Travelex Bank in Brazil to bring its On-Demand Liquidity offering to Latin America.
🌍 Wharton is to offer a certification in the metaverse as part of its new program this fall.
🌍 Tether’s auditor confirmed a 58% decline in the quarter on commercial paper holdings. It also announced monthly statements of holdings. An FT report showed that stablecoin issues hold 2% of the market for treasury bills in a structural change in market dynamics.
🌍 Internal FTX documents showed revenue topped $1bn in 2021, an increase of 1,000%. Net income was $388m.
🌍 Crypto lender Celsius is suing Prime Trust to return $17m in crypto it held in custody.
🌍 Coinbase is facing a class action lawsuit over failing to protect customers accounts from hackers. Its CEO is also going to focus on subscription revenues to reduce its trading fee dependency which is volatile. It also launched a voter registration tool to ensure crypto holders are registered to vote
🌍 Voyager has been given approval by courts to pay $1.9m to employees for remaining with the firm.
🌍 Ava Labs have been accused of attacking rivals in a conspiracy with a law firm.
Traditional Banking 🏦
🇪🇺 DZ Bank and dwp Bank have begin a pilot to allow retail customers to trade crypto.
🇪🇺 UBS has invested in AI platform BigPanda which detects and responds to IT systems.
🇬🇧 NatWest is providing staff of menopausal age an app to give access to advice and support.
🇬🇧 Nationwide is using Moneyhub’s PIS technology to allow current account holders to sweep money into new accounts opened at other banks.
🇬🇧 HSBC has rolled out its VRP product to both personal and business customers.
🇬🇧 Lloyds, Halifax and Bank of Scotland customers were locked out of their accounts for 10 hours this week.
🌍 Goldman Sachs may be putting pausing its Marcus efforts due to high cost overruns.
Fintech Infrastructure 🚧
🇬🇧 Lloyds has secured investment platform AJ Bell as a customer of its FundBy Bank technology, an open banking payment solution, for its account funding needs.
🇬🇧 Railsr has partnered with insurance intermediary Elsmore to bring fintech insurance to its customers.
🌍 Bond announced a Credit Builder Card product that enables other Fintechs to offer a secured credit card to their customers. The card is powered by Mastercard and issued by Evolve.
🌍 Belvo, an open finance API provider in Mexico, received investment from Citi Ventures.
🇪🇺 Adyen has rolled out its first payment terminal.
🇪🇺 viafintech, a unit of Paysafe and Pecunpay have teamed up to launch a cash deposit withdrawal network in Spain.
🇪🇺 Trustly has signed up Wizz Air as a customer to allow flights to be paid for directly from bank accounts.
🇬🇧 UK Finance has found that Faster Payments volumes increase 23% between 2020 and 2021.
🇬🇧 Wirex now enables customers to transfer GBP and EUR between their Wirex account and their bank accounts to allow instant buying and selling of crypto.
🇬🇧 An Essex bus company has banned Monzo and Revolut cardholders from using their phones to pay for its services and reduced its contactless limit to £10.
🇬🇧 Square has launched its first integration with Clearpay in the UK, allowing Square sellers in the UK to offer BNPL options to customers.
🇬🇧UK supermarket Iceland is rolling out a BNPL product for shoppers called Iceland Food Club.
🌍 Cash App parent company Block has been accused of slowing down a CFPB investigation into its complaint and dispute handling practices.
🌍 T Rowe Price has reduced its valuation of its investment in Stripe by 64%.
🌍 American Express has had its ban on issuing new cards in India by the Reserve Bank of India.
🌍 Binance and Mastercard are collaborating to allow the Binance card to be used for every day purchases in Argentina with crypto holdings converted to fiat for transactions at terminals.
🌍 Visa and Mastercard have said that an increase in fraud and competition are behind its fee hike in the aftermath of Brexit. Visa also announced it has issued 4bn network tokens through VTS.
🌍 MX, TCH and Google Cloud have launched “Pay by bank”, a product for merchants to allow their customers to pay directly from their bank accounts.
Regulatory Corner 🔎
🇬🇧 The FCA is warning BNPL companies against using misleading adverts that do not mention risks to customers.
🇬🇧 The FCA fined Citi £12.5m over past failures to police trading activity.
Longer reads 📜
- Bank Opportunity – Binding - Tom Noyes
- The future of BaaS - Julia Hubo and Zeynep Yavuz
- FINTECH IS BREAKING THE CREDIT BUREAUS - Alex Johnson
- Real-time payments need real-time fraud detection - Ravi Loganathan
- How Three Arrows Capital Blew Up and Set Off a Crypto Contagion - Justina Lee
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See you next week!