Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • Mitek Acquires A2iA for $49.7 Million.
  • WeInvest Raises $12.3 Million for its WealthTech Platform.
  • Finovate Alums Take Top Honors at FinTech Breakthrough Awards.
  • PaySend Adds KYC and Risk Management Technology from 4Stop..

Around the web

  • Deutsche Bank Luxembourg to deploy Avaloq Banking Suite.
  • Temenos unveils new digital onboarding and origination platform, Temenos Origination.
  • Revolut announces support for XRP and Bitcoin Cash.
  • Moneyhub integrates with Intelliflo to enable real-time, two-way sharing between financial advisors and clients.
  • Klarna acquires e-commerce shopping cart, Shop.co.
  • Sberbank to test ICO technology issued by Level One.
  • Tinkoff Bank to launch a new Development Hub in Sochi.
  • ID.me teams with LinkedIn to provide one year of LinkedIn Premium for free to U.S. service members and veterans.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.

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.

MENA

  • Dubai’s mobile-only, millennial-focused digital bank Liv celebrates acquiring more than 10,000 new customers every month in its first year of operation.
  • Islamic banking technology provider Path Solutions recognized as vendor of choice for Sharia-based core banking platforms by IBS Intelligence.
  • Dubai-based insurtech startup Aqeed raises $18 million in fuding one month after launch.

Africa

  • Africa-based digital payments solution company Cellulant has raised $47.5 million in Series C funding.
  • Hypepotamous profiles South African authentication specialist Entersekt.
  • Wala, which leverages blockchain technology to power its mobile money solution, goes live for Android users in Uganda, Zimbabwe, and South Africa.

LATAM

  • Kyriba announces plans to boost investment in Latin America and help CFOs and treasurers modernize cash, risk, payments, and working capital optimization.
  • Morgan Stanley to buy $14 million  (50 million reais) in bonds from Brazilian online lender Geru Tecnologia e Servicos.
  • Forbes.com looks at the future of financial technology in Mexico

CEE

  • Polish Credit Office, the largest credit bureau in Central and Eastern Europe, to use blockchain technology from Billon to store and access credit histories of more than one million businesses and 24 million people.
  • Mirror, mirror, on the wall, which CEE country has the most fintech companies of all? According to Unicredit, Bulgaria wins the top spot with 70 registered and working firms.
  • Revolut hires former Lead Marketing Manager of Uber Romania, Irina Scarlat, as its new Country Manager for Revolt Romania.

Asia

  • EY Asean markets managing partner Liew Nam Soon discusses the growth of Vietnam’s fintech industry.
  • Singapore Business Review looks at how blockchain technology could revive Thailand’s trade finance sector.
  • Hong Kong’s fintech unicorn WeLab plans to be among the first companies to apply for a virtual banking license from Hong Kong Monetary Authority.

Top image designed by Freepik

Revolut Introduces New Payment Sharing Feature, Near Me

Broke: Sending money to friends and family.

Woke: Sending money to nearby strangers.

Thanks to Revolut’s latest solution, Near Me, Revolut users will be able to send and request money from more than just the people they know well. The company’s latest feature leverages geolocation technology to enable users to split bills and send money to any other active Revolut user in the area.

“Until now, you would need to have the person you want to split the bill with added as a contact in your phone,” Revolut’s Chief Blogging Officer Rob Braileanu explained in a blog post today. “And while this is great for your close friends and family, what if you don’t know the person that well?”

To use the new feature, users with the latest version of the Revolut app select the People Near Me option from the Payments tab. Enable Near Me and choose your location sharing preferences. When the list of Revolut users appears, make your selection, choose “send” or “receive” and confirm the amount. Note that the person or persons on the other end of the transfer will need to have their Near Me screen open and select their location sharing preferences, as well.

Supporting 25 currencies and three cryptocurrencies, Near Me is the latest solution from a company that has been prominent in the fintech headlines of late. Last month, the company introduced a new savings solution, Vaults, that enables users to turn their spare change into savings in cash or crypto. In March, Revolut launched disposable virtual cards for online payments and, in January, the company added travel insurance to its offerings, leveraging geolocation to automatically turn coverage on and off when users leave and return to their home countries.

But the big splash for Revolut was the $250 million in funding the company picked up less than a month ago. The DST Global-led round sent Revolut’s valuation soaring to $1.7 billion, making the firm the first digital bank in the U.K. to earn unicorn status (valuation above $1 billion).

Founded in 2015 and headquartered in London, U.K., Revolut demonstrated its Personal Money Cloud at FinovateEurope 2015. Nikolay Stronosky is CEO.

 

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • JPMorgan Chase Signs Deal with Cardlytics.
  • Revolut Introduces New Payment Sharing Feature, Near Me.

Around the web

  • FinTech Breakthrough names Cloud Lending Solutions Best Business Lending Platform.
  • Payoneer announces new investment and support for cross-border U.S. SMEs.
  • eToro to launch cryptocurrency offering in the U.S., initially enabling investors to buy and sell 10 cryptocurrencies.
  • Uniken earns Cool Vendor in Identity and Access Management recognition from Gartner.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.

Revolut Raises $250 Million in New Funding; Earns Unicorn Valuation of $1.7 Billion

Revolut is fintech’s latest unicorn. An investment round of $250 million led by DST Global has boosted the company’s valuation to $1.7 billion and made Revolut the first U.K. digital bank to gain the lofty status among fintech’s most richly-financed startups.

“Three years ago, Revolut was nothing more than a few coders with a crazy ambition to disrupt financial services forever,” Revolut’s Chief Blogging Officer Rob Braileanu wrote. “In the beginning, our vision was laughed at and we were told that the big banks were too powerful.”

“Fast forward to today.”

Revolut said the Series C investment will be used to drive international expansion and to add talent. The company plans to be live in the U.S., China, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Australia by the end of 2018, with a goal of 100 million customers around the world within five years. Revolut also expects major increases in its workforce, more than doubling headcount from 350 to 800 employees.

“Revolut is developing and delivering technology that reduces the complexity and cost of financial services for consumers and small businesses,” DST Global’s Tom Stafford said. “We are delighted to support Nik and the Revolut team as they continue to innovate, roll out new services, and expand geographically.”

Nikolay Stronosky, Revolut CEO, added, “Our focus, since we launched, has been to do everything completely opposite to traditional banks. We build world-class tech that puts people back in control of their finances, we speak to our customers like humans and we’re never afraid to challenge old thinking in order to innovate.”

In a blog post discussing the news, Revolut shared an advance look at some of the new features the company has in store. Revolut Crypto will gain two new currencies: Ripple (XRP) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) alongside current listings Bitcoin (BTC), Litecoin (LTC), and Ether (ETH). Revolut Platinum will provider cardholders with a bespoke contactless stainless steel metal card coated in a “custom shade of metallic black paint for a truly unique look,” and Revolut Wealth, an expansion of Revolut’s services that will allow the platform’s users to invest their funds in stocks, index, ETFs, and other financial instruments.

And while Revolut’s fundraising news is hard to beat, the company has been making fintech headlines all year. Earlier this month, Revolut launched a new solution called Vaults that helps users save more by rounding up their transactions to the nearest whole number and setting aside the difference. Also in April, the company unveiled an update to its business accounts to expand their cross-currency transfer functionality. Revolut introduced both its new disposable virtual cards for online payments and its Euro Direct Debits in March, and began the year with a new insurtech offering, providing travel insurance for its users.

Headquartered in London, Revolut demonstrated its Personal Money Cloud at FinovateEurope 2015.  Storonsky discussed Revolut’s plans for expansion in APAC with TechWireAsia last month and more recently talked about the company’s planned entry to the Romanian market with Business Review.

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

  • Startupbootcamp FinTech Mexico City scouts for promising fintech startups in Latin America for next incoming cohort.
  • HID Global to support biometrics adoption throughout Latin America.
  • Partnership with Itaú Unibanco brings Apple Pay to consumers in Brazil.

CEE

  • Digital gaming marketplace Kinguin and mobile operator Play launch direct carrier billing in Poland via Fortumo.
  • Revolut announces plans to expand its services to Romania in May.
  • Kyiv Post celebrates diversity and achievement in fintech with its 8 Ukranian Women in Fintech: The Stories of Success feature.

Asia

  • Singapore-based peer to peer lending marketplace Funding Societies scores $25 million in Series C, the largest amount raised by a P2P lender from Southeast Asia.
  • South Korea’s third-largest cryptocurrency exchange slated to go live in Indonesia in June.
  • Singapore startup Silot raises $2.8 million in Pre-Series A funding.

MENA

  • Is the decline in correspondent banking activity hurting Islamic financial institutions? A report from the General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions says “yes.”
  • BBVA-backed Garanti Bank sponsors the first blockchain workshop in Turkey.
  • ADGM and Plug and Play open for business with new office in Abu Dhabi.
  • Checkout becomes the first PSP to accept payments via Saudi Arabia’s billion-transactions per year domestic network, mada.

Africa

  • Fintech Futures profiles Nigeria’s first loan marketplace, Fint.
  • German fintech MyBucks partners with Finsbury Investments to open fully-operational bank branch in Malawaian refugee camp, Dzaleka.
  • Africa Outlook examines factors accelerating banking transformation in Africa.

Top image designed by Freepik

Revolut Unveils New Savings Solution, Vaults

Digital banking alternative Revolut is the latest fintech to help you turn your spare change into savings gold (or cash, or Bitcoin) …

Revolut has introduced a new tool, Vaults, that enables users to set aside the spare change they get from daily transactions. “Every time you make a card transaction with Revolut, we’ll round up your purchase to the nearest whole number and place your space change into your Vault,” Revolut Chief Blogging Officer Rob Braileanu wrote this morning. “Picture the scene – you buy your morning coffee for £2.70, we round it up to £3.00 and automatically place £0.30 into your Savings Vault.”

Spare funds set aside in Vaults can be withdrawn at any time, and users can adjust the savings setting to have more or less spare change directed to their Vaults. Users of Vaults can save spare change in any of the 25 supported currencies, as well as cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ether. In addition to turning spare change into savings, the app can be used to set up recurring payments that are set aside in your Vault or make one-off payments.

“We’ve had thousands of people in our community asking for this feature, so we wanted to give something back and ask for their help in naming it,” Revolut CEO Nikolay Storonsky said. “We believe that Vaults will enable us to help many more people start saving and investing towards their future.”

Setting up the Vault on the Revolut app is straightforward. After making sure you have the latest version of the app installed, select “Vaults” under the “More” tab. Name your Vault and choose the currency and the savings goal. To round up transactions, choose the “Spare change” option. Funds set aside in the Vault are kept separately from the user’s main Revolut card account. Users should understand that funds received by Revolut in digital asset transactions are not protected under the U.K. Electronic Money Regulations 2011 nor the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.

Revolut demonstrated its app at FinovateEurope 2015. Founded in 2013 and headquartered in London, U.K., Revolut has more than 1.5 million customers across Europe, has processed more than 70 million transactions to date – totalling more than $10 billion in volume – and saved customers $160 million in fees.

Just last month Revolut announced that it was updating its business accounts to support more currencies. The new update will also enable users to set permissions for multiple log ins and to integrate Revolut’s technology with in-house systems and third party solutions via Open API. In March, Revolut introduced disposable virtual cards to help fight online card fraud, and launched its Euro direct debit service.

With plans to enter the North American market later this year, Revolut has raised more than $86 million in funding. The company includes Index Ventures, TriplePoint Capital, Balderton Capital, and Mastercard Start Path among its investors.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • BillShark Lands Funding and Advisory Backing from Mark Cuban.
  • Revolut Unveils New Savings Solution, Vaults.

Around the web

  • Openbank, Santander Group’s digital bank, to deploy WealthSuite from Temenos.
  • The Victory Bank chooses ProfitStarsCommercial Lending Center Suite to support commercial loan growth.
  • Identity verification provider Onfido names David Clarke as new CFO.
  • First National Bank of Eagle Lake in Texas partners with Insuritas to launch bank-owned insurance agency.
  • NTT Data announces successful completion of PoC data analysis trial for Bank of England, Join NTT Data at FinovateSpring, May 8-11.
  • CAN Capital hires Tom Davidson as Chief Financial Officer.
  • Entrust Datacard’s IntelliTrust Authentication Solution wins Frost & Sullivan’s 2018 North American Technology Leadership Award.
  • TechCrunch: Twilio’s wireless platform hits general availability.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • SpyCloud Lands $5 Million in Funding.
  • Finovate Alums Earn Spots on insideBIGDATA IMPACT 50 List.
  • The Faves of FinovateSpring: A Brief History of Best of Show Winners

Around the web

  • Benzinga reports: Tuition.io Helps Enterprises Tackle A $1.4 Trillion Crisis.
  • Speedway names InComm as Innovative Business Partner of the Year.
  • Revolut updates business accounts.
  • Bazaarvoice launches new solution to make personalization more powerful.

This post will be updated throughout the day as news and developments emerge. You can also follow all the alumni news headlines on the Finovate Twitter account.

Finovate Global: Fintech News from the Periphery

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

Asia

  • Singapore Business Review names Turnkey Lender and Bambu among Singapore’s hottest startups.
  • Citi introduces Facebook Messenger bot in Singapore as initial stage of wider worldwide rollout. (link)
  • Revolut founder and CEO Nikolay Storonsky discusses plans for APAC expansion with TechWireAsia.

Africa

  • Flywire and Flutterwave partner on cross-border payments & receivables in Nigeria.
  • Africa-based fintechs picked up almost one third of all Venture funding in Africa in 2017, according to a report from Disrupt Africa.
  • Village Capital Fintech Africa Cohort 2018 lists its incoming class of 12 startups.

MENA

  • Fintech Circle and Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) to launch fintech education courses.
  • Gulf News Banking takes a look at the digitization of the fintech sector in the Middle East.
  • Bahrain-based security startup, Eazy Financial Services, launches first biometric payment network in MENA.

LATAM

  • Neener Analytics Completes Proof-of-Concept with Jamaican Payday Lender.
  • Alipay partners with Openpay to connect Chinese consumers with merchants in Mexico. (link)
  • Amazon.com unveils first debit card in Mexico as part of e-commerce initiative.

CEE

  • Personetics Brings Cognitive Banking to Romania’s Banca Transilvania.
  • Sberbank to host the first International Cybersecurity Conference in July.
  • CEE Fintech Survey for 2017 cites Poland’s fintech industry as the region’s most vibrant.

Top image designed by Freepik