Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Turkey’s Albaraka Turk introduces interest-free digital banking app designed for Europe’s Muslim community.
  • National Bank of Bahrain launches digital payment and trade finance portal.
  • Ziraat Bankası KSA, a Saudi Arabian subsidiary of Turkish banking Group Ziraat, upgrades its core banking system to Temenos T24.

Central and South Asia

  • JP Morgan establishes Financial Inclusion Lab in partnership with the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad’s Centre for Innovation, Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE).
  • India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) scheduled for August launch with core banking technology from Infosys Finacle.
  • City Bank unveils end-to-end digital supply chain finance facility in Bangladesh.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • EBANX and Wordline partner to launch new debit card payment option for Spotify Brazil.
  • Brazil’s Zen Finance to offer $1 billion in working capital to SMEs courtesy of funding from BRL Trust and BRZ Investments. In Portuguese.
  • Crypto Insider sees a lot to like in Mexico’s fintech industry.

Asia-Pacific

  • United Overseas Bank plans digital-only bank to appeal to South East Asia’s mobile-first consumers.
  • Australian challenger bank Judo Capital raises $140 million in funding.
  • Singapore Ministry of Education launches IBF Careers Connect to help train and retrain financial professionals.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) develops risk-based cyber security framework for banks and PSPs.
  • Absa Group of South Africa launches WhatsApp banking.
  • Nigeria’s Paylater reaches one million download milestone for its financial services app.
  • Pan-African banking group Ecobank names finalists for its annual fintech challenge competition.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Cryperium Releases Crypto-Fiat Solution.
  • Sberbank Group CTO David Rafalovsky selected to lead Sberbank’s Technology Block.
  • IBM Ukraine wins bid to develop information technology for NJSC Naftogaz Ukrainy.
  • Google Pay arrives in Croatia, making it the third CEE country to gain support for the technology.

Top image designed by Freepik

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Poland’s Horum Bank, a mobile bank based on blockchain technology, prepares for launch, most likely in the Baltics.
  • VTB Bank in Armenia goes live mobile banking and enhances internet banking services.
  • Emerging Europe examines the fintech industry in Romania “and beyond.”

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Turkey’s İşbank opens API portal with 14 APIs including payments plans, credit scores, and customer accounts.
  • UAE’s Trriple announces upgrades to its mobile wallet app, making top-ups easier and adding a loyalty program.
  • Growth Business UK features Dubai-based crowdfunding platform, Eurecca.

Central and South Asia

  • Mastercard launches its Simplify Commerce platform in Sri Lanka.
  • Forbes looks at how the election of Imran Khan as Pakistan’s new prime minister could impact the country’s fintech industry.
  • Paysense, a fintech based in Mumbai, India, raised $18 million in funding in a round led by PayU.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Worldline and Brazilian fintech EBANX produce new payment method for Brazilian users of Spotify.
  • Bradesco and Banco do Brasil launch urban mobility payment company, Veloe.
  • International Tax Review looks at the tax policy and the crowdfunding industry in Mexico.

Asia-Pacific

  • Experian leads $28 million investment in C88 Financial Technologies Group as part of effort to boost financial inclusion in Southeast Asia.
  • U.K.-based Online Blockchain introduces ManilaCoin, a cryptocurrency designed to promote financial inclusion in the Philippines.
  • IBM lands managed services deal with Thailand’s Krungsri (Bank of Ayudhya) valued at $140 million.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Kenyan fintech Tulaa raises $627k in seed funding. The Nairobi-based company helps small farmers access credit and markets.
  • Alpha Code, an accelerator and incubator headquartered in South Africa, begins accepting applications for its AlphaCode Incubate Programme.
  • Nigeria’s National Identity Management Commission encourages private and public sector IT leaders to focus on digital inclusion.

Top image designed by Freepik

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Mookh Africa, a fintech startup from Kenya that has developed a social business payments solution, wins Visa’s Sub Saharan Africa Everywhere Initiative contest.
  • Techpoint declares 2018 The Year of the Nigerian Fintech Startup.
  • Temenos taps Alexandre Menage as new Head of Sales for Africa.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Equities.com reviews the 10 Hottest Places to Launch a Fintech Startup in Central and Eastern Europe.
  • Total Croatia News looks at money transfer startup, Aircash, which has gained 15,000 users in the first 12 months of operation.
  • Ukraine’s Financial Stability Council issues digital currency regulating document as popularity of crytocurrency trading in the country grows.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Salaam Gateway discusses how Dubai’s FinTech Hive supports Islamic fintech with the organization’s executive Vice President, Raja Al Mazrouei.
  • UAE-based merchant acquirer Network International introduces e-commerce platform for SMEs.
  • Daily Sabah looks at venture investment in Turkey in the first half of 2018.

Central and South Asia

  • Aurora talks with President and CEO of Telenor Bank, Shahid Mustafa about microfinance and e-commerce in Pakistan.
  • Onfido to Secure Drivers for India’s Largest Rideshare Company.
  • Fortune India interviews PayU India’s CEO Amrish Rau.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Incoming cohort for Startupbootcamp FinTech’s second Latin America-oriented program features fintechs from Mexico, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Chile, and Peru.
  • The Sociable profiles Microsoft-backed Imagine Lab Chile.
  • PYMNTS.com looks at how financial institutions in Latin America are coping with cyber fraud.

Asia-Pacific

  • Trulioo extends its identity and business verification service to the Philippines.
  • Personetics Scores Minority Stake Investment from United Overseas Bank.
  • Hong Kong Monetary Authority unveils Open API framework.

Top image designed by Freepik

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Asia-Pacific

  • Chinese fintech solutions provider Pintec files $70 million IPO.
  • Shwe Rural and Urban Development Bank in Myanmar partners with JMR Infotech to better scale its online services.
  • Hong Kong banks team up to launch blockchain-based trade finance platform.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • The Fintech Association of Nigeria celebrates its first anniversary.
  • Disrupt Africa looks at a pair of investments in Nigerian fintechs: CowryWise and Bitcoin Africa.
  • SophiaTX and South Africa’s ArkTree announce new strategic alliance to expand the global reach of blockchain technology

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Hungarian bank MKB, the fourth largest commercial bank in the country, deploys Oracle Flexcube to streamline operations.
  • Open banking platform innovator Token announces that its technology has been implemented by Sberbank in Slovenia.
  • Israel-based cashless payments solution and management platform Nayax opens office in Lithuania.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Jihad Azour, Director of IMF Middle East and Central Asia, delivers a speech at the Arab Economic Forum in Lebanon: Promoting the Inclusive Growth Agenda in the Arab Region.
  • Saudi Arabia grants its first set of fintech licenses to a pair of Saudi crowdfunding platforms, Manafa Capital and Scopeer.
  • Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) notes a strong start in 2018 with the number of active registered companies climbing by 8%.

Central and South Asia

  • Study from JP Morgan looks at the untapped opportunities in the Indian fintech space.
  • FSS introduces FSS eFinclusiv, a financial inclusion solution geared toward serving the underbanked in India.
  • Russia’s National Settlement Depository to connect Kyrgyzstan’s Bank of Asia to SWIFT.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • El Cronista interviews Rafael Hernandez, senior partner of fintech at Village Capital, on business opportunities in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In Spanish.
  • Brazilian online broker Toro Investmentos begins operation this week.
  • Bank of Asia goes live as the first digital bank in the British Virgin Islands.

Top image designed by Freepik

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World


As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Brazilian card processor Conductor to deploy 3D Secure authentication technology from TAS Group later this fall.
  • Distributed check capture specialist Panini and technology distributor J. Fleischman team up to bring check truncation to Paraguay.
  • Visa introduces loyalty program available to issuing banks in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Asia-Pacific

  • TransferWise opens office in Hong Kong as part of expansion into Asia.
  • AsiaCollect, a credit management services provider based in Singapore, raises $4.5 million in funding.
  • Foreign exchange and international payments company, Frontierpay, opens Asian headquarters in Singapore.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • South African fintech walletdoc partners with EasyPay to make it easier for consumer to pay monthly subscriptions and utilities.
  • Western Union opens office in Ivory Coast.
  • Nigeria’s Bureau of Public Procurement introduces eGovernment Procurement System.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Albania’s Raiffeisen Bank Shqipëri partners with NF Innova to deploy digital self-service kiosks.
  • Efigence provides UI/UX design, development and implementation for new investment platform from Polish home equities broker, CDM Pekao.
  • Russian SME crowdfunding platform SimplyFi partners with Tochka Bank to offer direct lending to the bank’s business customers.
  • Sberbank introduces support for Google Pay.
  • Western Union partners with Russia’s Post Bank, enabling money transfers via Post Bank’s mobile app.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Kuwait Finance House (KFH) to use VISA’s token service for its mobile wallet.
  • Saudi Arabia-based Maalem Financing to deploy Islamic core banking technology from Path Solutions.
  • Turkish government launches fintech task force to improve fintech ecosystem locally.

Central and South Asia

  • The Economic Times looks at the role of bankers in India’s “coming fintech revolution.”
  • RBS India, the innovation hub of the Royal Bank of Scotland, to launch forum on disability inclusion.
  • PaySend joins Astana International Finance Centre (AIFC), a central Asian fintech hub based in Kazakhstan.

Top image designed by Freepik

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • UAE’s Foloosi introduces cashless transactions via digital wallet.
  • Revenue management specialist SunTec partners with UAE’s Mashreq Bank.
  • Jumhouria Bank of Libya to deploy reconciliation management technology from SmartStream Technologies.

Latin America

  • Fintech Futures takes a look at Mexico’s preparation for implementation of its new fintech law.
  • TyN Magazine profiles Argentine P2P lender, TuTasa. In Spanish.
  • Bermuda’s government to amend banking laws to support new class of banks to work with local fintech and blockchain startups.

Asia

  • Bloomberg investigates the challenges Singapore is facing in trying to meet its fintech aspirations at a time of stiff competition for engineering talent.
  • Will China step up regulations on its P2P lending industry?
  • Lattice80 and SuperCharger team up to develop bridge between fintechs in Singapore and fintechs in Hong Kong.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Nigerian logistics startup Kobo360 picks up $1.2 million in pre-seed funding; announces launch of Kobo Wealth Investment Network, a crowd investing vehicle financing program.
  • Creamer Media’s Engineering News looks at how policymaking in South Africa will affect fintech innovation in the country.
  • Nuadox features its seven African fintech startups to follow in 2018.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Silicon Republic features expense-tracking tool BudgetBakers, PFM solution Spendee, and financial services provider for the underserved Twisto in its list of 10 Outstanding Start-ups from Prague to Watch.
  • Blockchain innovator Billon is the first Polish company to be featured in the FinTech 50.
  • Bank of Lithuania introduces regtech solution to make it easier for companies to remotely apply for e-money and payment institution licenses.

Top image designed by Freepik

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Raiffeisen Bank Romania unveils eight fintech finalists for its Elevator Lab Challenge.
  • Alfa-Bank Belarus migrates to WAY4 platform from digital payments solutions provider OpenWay.
  • 150Sec.com takes a look at the graduating cohort of 19 fintech startups emerging from Latvia and Estonia accelerator programs.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) signs MoU with Astana Financial Services Authority.
  • Bahrain Development Bank (BDB) announces closing $100 million fundraising round for its Al Waha Fund of Funds.
  • Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) introduces its regulatory framework for spot crypto asset activities.

Latin America

  • BlueRush teams up with Kunder to forge partnership with Chilean pension fund leader, AFPHabitat.
  • Integrated Biometrics announces its 10-print fingerprint scanners have become the standard for financial service organizations in Mexico.
  • Argentine fintech Increase earns Best of the World award for its positive social and environmental impact.

Asia

  • MatchMove powers the first contactless prepaid Mastercard in South Asia
  • Singapore’s PayNow service to be extended to corporate customers with launch of PayNow Corporate later this summer.
  • Cambodia announces plans to build $70 million data center to support development of the country’s digital economy.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • IT News Africa’s 5 Most Innovative Startups in Kenya list features P2P micro lending marketplace Pezesha; SaaS mobile commerce platform, Sky.Garden; and FX and payment platform, BitPesa.
  • EcoFin Hebdo looks at the rise of insurtech in Africa. In French.
  • Online sports betting in Nigeria sees boost as popularity of digital payments agrows.

Top image designed by Freepik

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Asia

  • Flywire and UnionPay International partner to provide Chinese customers with better rates on cross-border payments.
  • Leading southeast Asian digital cross border money transfer firm InstaReM goes live in Europe with new London office.
  • South Korean payments app Toss raises $40 million in funding.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) teams up with Startupbootcamp as part of an effort to boost Dubai’s status as a regional fintech hub.
  • AME Info asks if Saudi women and UAE crypto can alleviate Bahrain’s debt crisis.
  • VentureBurn features Egyptian savings startup Money Fellows.

Africa

  • Elizabeth Rossiello, CEO and founder of Nairobi, Kenya-based BitPesa, talks about leveraging cryptocurrencies to improve global payments in Africa.
  • South Africa’s ITWeb features features Richard Marsden, co-founder of Johannesburg-based FinChatBot on the rise of chatbot technology in the insurance industry.
  • Branch International reports N1 billion ($2.78 million) in loans facilitated to users in Nigeria.

Latin America

  • Brazil’s Nubank reaches milestone of 1.5 million digital account openings in six months.
  • Latin American Regional Conference sponsored by Swift sees collaboration as fundamental for growth of financial services in Latin America.
  • Brazilian insurtech startup Kakau partners with insurance companies American Life and Generali.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Kontomatik appoints CEO Piotr Warsicki as its new CEO.
  • Poland’s Alior Bank partners with solarisBank, Raisin, and Mastercard to launch pan-EU digital bank later this year.
  • The largest bank in the Czech Republic, Česká spořitelna introduces voice biometrics courtesy of partnership with Nuance Communications.

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Revolut announces recruitment initiative in Kraków, Poland to hire 100 new workers in a single day employment in its offices in Eastern Europe.
  • Forbes features Tinkoff Bank in look at Russia’s efforts to develop its digital economy.
  • Polish financial group Aforti Holdings to launch non-bank lender for SMEs and startups in Romania.

Asia

  • Banks in South Korea to introduce blockchain based identity verification for mobile and online logins. The technology is reportedly built on a private blockchain system developed by Samsung SDS.
  • Daon Partners with Tradelink to Bring Biometrics to Dah Sing Bank.
  • Bank of Thailand is developing and testing blockchain apps in its regulatory sandbox.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Financial technology services firm, One Global, discusses plans for expansion into Egyptian market.
  • ADGM Reglab reports record number of fintech applications for its third cohort.
  • Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange turns to Equifax for advice on development of new technologies to improve operational efficiency.

Africa

  • TransferTo, Orange Money Botswana, and EcoCash partner to support digital money transfers between Zimbabwe and Botswana.
  • IMF review of South Africa suggests “increased focus on the role fintech …” could access to credit for SMEs and promotion broader financial inclusion.
  • Nigerian startup, Piggybank.ng, raises $1.1 million to further develop its online savings platform.

Latin America

  • Diario Financiero interviews Ángel Sierra, executive director of La Asociación Fintech Chile, on digital innovation (video in Spanish).
  • TransferWise initiates service in Argentina.
  • PayU goes live in Colombia with its PayU te fía (PayU You Trust) solution that enables borrowers to extend repayment terms (in Spanish).

Top image designed by Freepik

Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. Finovate Global: Fintech News from Around the World is our weekly look at fintech innovation in developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe.

LATAM

  • Integrated touch sensors at sign-in kiosk and video wall enhance experience for customers of Chile’s half bank, half cafe Santander WorkCafes.
  • Brazilian online lender Banco Agibank sets price for its upcoming IPO; targets valuation of $2.7 billion.
  • Forbes looks at the increase in the number of Brazilians opening crypto trading accounts.

CEE

  • Blockchain company Billon picks up €1 million in funding from Polish National Center for Research and Development.
  • Polish cryptocurrency exchange BitBay to move to Malta.
  • Lithuania’s central bank hosts hackathon to mint world’s first digital collector coin.

Asia

  • White paper from APAC research firm Solidiance predicts Vietnam’s fintech market will grow by nearly $8 billion by 2020.
  • Myanmar Ministries of Agriculture and Planning and Finance partner with Singapore-based fintech to develop official livestock registry that would be used to help farmer use livestock as collateral for loans.
  • Korean fintech Qarasoft launches AI-based financial forecasting app, Kosho.

MENA

  • Oman’s Bank Sohar to deploy core banking platform from Infosys Finacle.
  • Jordanian P2P lending platform liwwa surpasses $11 million in loans issued milestone.
  • Entrepreneur.con features ten startups to emerge from Cairo, Egypt’s Flat6labs accelerator including fintechs like 7aweshly and Tombeely.
  • Abu Dhabi Global Market and Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission announce cooperation agreement to support innovation in financial services.

Africa

  • First Bank and WorldRemit team up to bring digital money transfers to Nigeria.
  • African Development Bank partners with The Rockefeller Foundation, Microsoft, and Facebook to initiate Coding for Employment Program.
  • Money transfer platform OROBO introduces remittance and bill pay service to Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, and Sierra-Leone courtesy of partnership with OpenWay.
  • Disrupt Africa looks at what investors are seeking in Africa’s fintech sector.

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