The Front Page of Global Fintech

The the largest fintech community in the world. Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date on the latest in news opinions, and all things financial technology.

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The Front Page of Global Fintech

The the largest fintech community in the world. Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date on the latest in news opinions, and all things financial technology.

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Europe's banks open up their wallets (TWIF 11/5)

Europe's banks open up their wallets (TWIF 11/5)
BBC - Your pictures on the theme of 'autumn walks'

Hello Fintech Friends,

If you're here for late-week fintech news, you came to the right place.

As a reminder, I publish all our headlines on Fridays, all our fundraising news on Saturdays, and all our M&A news and deeper reads on Sundays.

If you ever feel like you're getting too many emails (or not enough), you can adjust the cadence and what you're subscribed to at your account settings page.

This Sunday features:

  • Three planned fintech IPOs and a SPAC.
  • Not one, not two, but three announced and rumored Italian bank acquisitions in the last week.
  • A $10.5 billion megadeal between Nasdaq and Adenza, a $103 million crypto exchange acquisition in Thailand, and $250 paid by Wex for Payzer, as the fleet card provider gears up for an acquiring spree.
  • And a raft of Q3 fintech market data has become available, thanks to CB Insights.

Please find another week of fintech exits and deep reads below. (👍👎 Have feedback for us? Let us know!)

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📖 Reads of the Week

First, some sobering data on American financial health, in the form of the highest delinquencies on auto loan payments in three decades:

Car Owners Fall Behind on Payments at Highest Rate on Record
The risk of vehicle repossession is rising for many Americans facing a budget crunch.

However, most American households are actually doing pretty well, financially! The average (not median) American household is now worth over $1 million, thanks to "college, savings, bull markets and timing." (More on median household wealth below.)

Never Mind the 1%. Mini-Millionaires Are Where Wealth Is Growing Fastest.
Many people in the upper middle class are now millionaires thanks to college, savings, bull markets and timing.

A mixed report on fintech in Q3, from CB Insights:

State of Fintech Q3’23 Report - CB Insights Research
Global fintech funding showed signs of stabilizing in Q3′23, falling by just 3% QoQ.
  • Global fintech funding fell 3% QoQ to hit $7.4 billion.
  • US fintech funding saw a 5% drop in Q3’23.
  • But despite a drop in deals, digital lending secured the most funding among fintech sectors in Q3’23 — funding to the space rose by 70% QoQ to hit $1.7 billion.

Private equity is diving into a new growth vertical: owning your retirement savings providers.

Private Equity Wants a Piece of Your Retirement Savings
Amid the roster of banks and brokerages helping KKR & Co. raise money for some of its newest infrastructure investments, two names stand out: Fidelity and Charles Schwab Corp.

And is fintech creating the conditions for another potential bank stress outcome?

How a Fintech Reckoning Is Rippling Through a Small Bank in Washington
When Washington state–based Coastal Community Bank struck its first fintech partnership with Aspiration, a startup backed by Leonardo DiCaprio and Orlando Bloom, it ushered in a new era for the sleepybank north of Seattle. Starting with that agreement in 2017, Coastal quickly became one of the…

☯️ Exits
💻 IPOs & SPACs
  • Plaid brought on a new CFO to prepare for an eventual IPO that is hoped to value the financial data infrastructure company above its proposed 2020 $5.3 billion sale price to Visa and above its $13.4 billion 2021 fundraise valuation.
  • Apex Fintech, one of the largest clearing and settlement infrastructure providers and platforms for the investing industry, is considering plans for a 2024 IPO, after pulling plans to go public via SPAC in 2021.
  • Klarna established a UK holding company as a step towards a public listing.
  • It’s been a while since we’ve seen a fintech-focused SPAC! FG Merger II filed for a $75 million IPO to target a company in the North American financial services market.

We’re sending a cake to the next fintech startup that goes public.

🤝 M&A - Fintech
  • Equities exchange Nasdaq agreed to acquire Adenza, a software provider primarily used by banks and brokerages, for $10.5 billion. As part of the deal, Adenza's private equity owner Thoma Bravo will get a 14.9% stake in Nasdaq, making it one of the biggest shareholders in the exchange operator.
  • Wex, a corporate payment solutions provider for businesses that focuses on travel payment and corporate cards, announced that it will acquire Payzer, a maker of HVAC & plumbing business software, for $250 million. Matt Janiga notes on Twitter that Wex is also hiring an M&A attorney, a potential signal of more market-expansion acquisitions to come.
  • Package delivery company UPS will acquire Happy Returns, a reverse logistics company that enables frictionless, no-box, no-label returns for merchants and consumers, from PayPal, who acquired the company in 2021.
  • Kasikorn Bank, Thailand's second-largest bank, acquired a 97% stake in crypto exchange Satang for $103 million.
  • Togetherwork, a provider of group management software and payments, is reportedly seeking a buyer.
  • Shift4, an integrated payments and commerce software builder, completed its previously announced acquisition of Finaro, a cross-border ecommerce payments provider and fully-licensed bank.
  • French venture capital firm Founders Future acquired profitable equity crowdfunding platform Sowefund.
  • The European Payments Initiative, a bank-backed card network venture set up to build a rival to Mastercard and Visa in Europe, acquired Dutch payment scheme iDeal and Luxembourg's Payconiq.
  • German subscription management and recurring billing software solutions provider Billwerk+ announced the acquisition of its rival plenigo.
  • Orbyt, a CFO software provider for AR automation and integrated payments, acquired Telia’s Finnish activities dedicated to providing eInvoice services.
  • UK embedded subscription management platform Youtility was acquired by Squeeze, a US insurance price comparison site.
  • Vista Equity partners completed its previously-announced $4 billion buyout of customer engagement and payments provider EngageSmart.

🏦 M&A - Bank and FinServ 
  • Stock of Italian bank and payments network provider Nexi jumped 19% to around $7 as rumors circulated of a potential buyout from private equity firm CVC Capital Partners.
  • Italian bank UniCredit offered to buy the Greek state’s holding in Alpha Bank and agreed to acquire Alpha’s Romanian unit for €300 million in cash.
  • Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo acquired Romania’s First Bank from its private equity owner JC Flowers for about €130 million.
  • BBVA is consolidating its three tech firms into one new company, called BBVA Technology, which will employ 3,000 of their staff and offer a more "strategic focus."
  • Canadian Tire Corp. bought back a 20% stake in its financial-services business from Bank of Nova Scotia for C$895 million ($647 million) in an all-cash transaction.
  • Cadence Bank will sell its insurance brokerage unit to insurance brokerage Arthur J Gallagher for $904 million.
  • UK fund manager abrdn will sell its private equity unit to Brazil's Patria Investments for about £60 million.
  • Charlesbank Capital, a private equity firm, made a majority growth investment into Petra, a fund administrator serving private investment firms.
  • Private equity firm Blue Owl is weighing an acquisition of rival private credit lender Hayfin Capital Management.
  • Wealth management provider Canaccord Genuity is exploring a potential acquisition of Close Brothers' wealth management operations.
  • Canada's House of Commons has asked Ottawa to reject Royal Bank of Canada's proposed C$13.5 billion acquisition of HSBC's domestic unit on anticompetitive grounds.

🌎 Fintech Around the World

From Fintech to AI: Exploring the Next Technological Frontier in Africa

Nigeria Plans New FX Rules in Hopes of Naira Reaching ‘Fair Price’ by End of 2023

Naira Jumps on Nigeria Streets, Crypto Trade After Forex Cleared

Android in Africa: the enabler to making Financial Inclusion a reality

Open Finance: Lessons from Brazil

With China playing catchup with the U.S., these 3 charts show the top countries for fintech in 2023

Domagoj Rozic, the Colombian-Croatian behind Colombia’s real-time payment system

📚 Deeper Reads & Features

FDIC IG Report Provides New Details on FDIC's Approach to Crypto

Carta’s CEO reaches out to customers about bad press, alerting them to bad press


How a Fintech Reckoning Is Rippling Through a Small Bank in Washington

Why is technology best for checking bank customer identities?

First Impressions on CFPB's Proposed Open Banking Rule: Considerations for Key Stakeholders

Will Goldman Sachs’s big bet on wealth management work?

Some notes on Bank Franchising

Mid-Size and Regional Banks Utilize Reciprocal Deposits for Deposit Growth and Retention


Beyond the Gen AI Hype

What bank, fintech execs are saying about AI

AI and the Gamechangers in Fintech

How will artificial intelligence affect financial regulation?


Plaid Says Consumer-Centric Innovation Will Power Money Movement

Announcing the FinTech Innovation Lab’s 2024 Tech Priorities. Applications are now open.

Accelerating Innovation and Protecting Privacy: How Generative AI Reshapes the Banking Landscape?

The Twitter Jerk Circuit

Sydecar: Industry Standard Terms for Emerging Fund Managers

What are digital bonds and how are they issued?

The Way You Pay to Buy or Sell a Home Is About to Change

US companies shy away from debt markets as Treasury rout drives up costs

How Butter recovers 166%+ more lost revenue than traditional payment recovery

Meet Morgan Stanley's new power trio and the challenges they face

Dogs live longer and happier lives when they get to socialize often

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