PayPal in Argentina; Temenos Backs African Challenger Bank

Finovate Global 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

  • PayPal invests $750 million in Argentina-based e-commerce company MercadoLibre.
  • First Data to acquire Brazilian electronic funds transfer (EFT) solution provider Software Express.
  • NCR, Bluefin, and Powertranz team up to support POS card processing for Caribbean quick serve restaurants.
  • BlueRush deploys its Individeo platform with a large Colombian bank courtesy of a partnership with Bee Concept.
  • The Wall Street Journal looks at how global FIs are gaining interest in the Latin American alternative lending market.

Asia-Pacific

  • Experian launches Singapore-based incubator, Experian X Labs.
  • South Korean crypto company Kakao raises $90 million via private coin offering.
  • Thai Stock Exchange to launch a digital asset exchange next year.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Front office and core banking technology from Temenos to drive digital revamp for African challenger bank, Vista Bank.
  • Financial Software and Systems takes 46% stake in South Africa’s Ecentric Payment Systems.
  • South Africa’s second largest retail bank, Capitec, extends its partnership with ACI Worldwide.
  • ThreatMetrix teams up with Blue Turtle Technologies to help market its fraud prevention solution to customers in Africa.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Tinkoff Bank reports 2018 highlights including launch of new mortgage app, a joint P2P money transfer offering with Sberbank, and more than 2.7 million new active credit customers.
  • iSignthis Inks Banking and Payments Deal with Ibanera.
  • Bulgaria-based Software Group scores €18 million loan from Europe Investment Bank.
  • EU Startups features lending platform Inlock its look at 10 Hungarian startups to look out for in 2019.
  • Bulgaria’s Municipal Bank to deploy new core and payments solutions from Oracle.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) launches $10 million fund for fintech startups in the MENA region.
  • Commercial Bank of Qatar joins R3.
  • Credit scoring solution provider Creditinfo opens regional hub in Muscat following new strategic partnership with the Central Bank of Oman.

Central and South Asia

  • ArthaYantra wins Fintech of the Year (India) at The Asset Triple A Digital Awards.
  • Africa’s Naspers plans to spend $1 billion on investments in Indian fintechs.
  • Standard Chartered’s SC Ventures division to launch digital platform for Indian SMEs.

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Finovate Global: Vymo Launches in Vietnam; ZagTrader Helps FIs Go Crypto

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

  • ZagTrader and BeQuant team Up to help institutions go crypto.
  • Temenos partners with Saudi Arabia’s Al Rajhi bank.
  • Emirates NBD to work with Intellect Design Arena for a planned digital transformation of its transaction banking platform.

Central and South Asia

  • BankBazaar announces partnership with Ujjivan Small Finance Bank for Personal Loans.
  • Victoria Commercial Bank Kenya goes live with corporate banking technology powered by i-exceed’s Appzillon.
  • Aurora interviews Bernhard Klemen, international partner with venture capital fund Sarmayacar on opportunities for venture financing for Pakistani fintech startups.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • German challenger bank N26 announces plans to expand to Brazil.
  • BBVA Colombia looks at its role in helping promote fintech innovation in Peru. In Spanish.
  • FXCompared profiles Argentina-based PayPal rival, MercadoLibre.

Asia-Pacific

  • Leading Vietnam-based consumer finance firm, FE Credit, chooses Vymo’s AI-powered personal sales assistant.
  • Bambu and CredoLab earn spots on Fintech News Singapore’s 29 Hottest Fintechs in Singapore 2019 roster.
  • Accenture and nCino partner to better serve FIs in the Asia-Pacific and EMEA regions.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Tymebank goes live with core banking tech from Mambu.
  • Nigerian digital banking solution provider TeamApt raises $5.5 million in funding.
  • South Africa’s Standard Bank to launch private cloud-based distributed ledger platform for payments and settlement.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Russia’s Tinkoff Bank joins the country’s Faster Payments System.
  • Ukraine finishes its pilot project, begun in December, in support of its national digital currency, the e-hryvnia.
  • UK-based Rimilia and Association of Credit for Central and Eastern Europe to promote adoption of AI-based technologies to automate AR in the CEE region.

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Finovate Global: Braintri Wins App Prize; Featurespace in Singapore

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

  • Austrian division of private banking and asset management group, LGT, partners with Avaloq.
  • Bank of Lithuania announces updates to its position on virtual assets and ICOs.
  • IKO, the mobile app co-developed by Braintri for PKO Bank Polski, wins first place in worldwide ranking of mobile apps published by British Retail Banker International for second consecutive year.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Finastra brings its core banking technology to Saudi Arabia.
  • Cryptocurrency brokerage based in Kuwait, YallaBit, raises $925,000 in Series A.
  • Arabian Gazette highlights Bahrain’s Manama, Saudi Arabia’s Riyadh, as well as both Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the UAE in its look at Four Arabian Gulf Cities Where Fintech is Thriving.

Central and South Asia

  • Temenos acquires Bangalore-based big data and analytics firm, hTrunk.
  • National Bank of Pakistan introduces its first contactless debit card.
  • Anirban Mukherjee appointed CEO of PayU India.
  • QR code-based payment app BharatPe raises $17 million in round led by Sequoia Capital India.
  • Pan Asia Bank and TerraPay partner to provide instant cross-border payment access to bank accounts in Sri Lanka.
  • Halyk Bank teams up with Fiserv to centralize its cash management process.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Digital challenger bank C6 goes live in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
  • Mexico looks at the possibility of forming a digital payments system, run by the central bank, to help make financial services more accessible for the underbanked.
  • PYMNTS.com features Argentine digital challenger bank, Wilobank.

Asia-Pacific

  • Ping An’s fintech subsidiary OneConnect sets up shop in Indonesia.
  • Hong Kong Exchange acquires minority stake in Shenzhen-based fintech.
  • Featurespace goes live in Singapore.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • South African digital lender Payabill announces equity stake investment from Johannesburg-based business challenger bank, Sasfin.
  • Kenyan Capital Markets Authority Chief Executive Paul Muthaura speaks about the need for a “conducive environment” for fintech innovation in the country.
  • Nigerian Lagos state government to launch e-procurement platform within the next three weeks.

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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

  • Digicro receives $300,000 in funding to help fuel its entry to the mobile microfinance market in Cambodia.
  • Monetary Authority of Singapore considers strengthening oversight of bank outsourcing.
  • Fintech News Malaysia looks at the challenges of transitioning toward a cashless society.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Quadient announces partnership with South Africa’s Beehive Online Solutions.
  • TechNext looks at the lessons Nigeria can learn from the success of Kenya’s M-Akiba investment mobile app.
  • All Africa reports on the increased use of mobile money in Tanzania.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Sberbank launches its first IT Demo Day in partnership with 500 Startups.
  • Romania’s Oney Bank partners with Wirecard to bring additional functionality to its mobile app.
  • Sberbank and its subsidiary Sberbank Technology unveil open source-based communications platform for developers, engineers, and architects.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Oman-based bank Sohar International integrates biometric authentication into its mobile banking app.
  • Emirates NBD introduces The LaunchPad to help startups connect with angel and early-stage investors.
  • Morocco-based CFG Bank chooses Kony to help drive its digital transformation.

Central and South Asia

  • India’s Federal Bank goes live with its open banking platform.
  • Finca Impact Finance Tajikistan launches search for a new core banking system.
  • Inc.42 features 5 Trends in Fintech You Will See in 2019 in India.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Brazil’s largest bank, Itau Unibanco, leverages AI-powered cameras to suspicious behaviors in branches.
  • Scotiabank and The Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudious Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM) unveil new accelerator, Factory A, in Mexico City.
  • Argentina’s Banco Columbia implements Visa Loyalty Solutions en route to its digital transformation.

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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

  • Mexican fintech Albo raises $7.4 million in Series A round led by Mountain Nazca.
  • Mobile digital wallet BPP Pay goes live in Brazil.
  • The Inter-American Development Bank and Finnovista publish their Fintech in Latin America 2018: Growth and Consolidation report.

Asia-Pacific

  • R3 and SBI Holdings launch joint venture to boost use of Corda in Japan and East Asia more broadly.
  • Mizuho inks memorandum of understanding for business cooperation with Zhongguancun Development Group (ZDG) in quest for Chinese fintech startups.
  • Phillippine “fintech city” Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) unveils new regulations for trading cryptocurrency assets.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Standard Chartered begins the second phase of its digital-only, retail bank rollout in four African markets.
  • The Standard reflects on Kenya’s progress in promoting financial inclusion via financial technology.
  • Modern Ghana considers Five Ways Fintech Will Change E-Commerce.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Fintech Futures takes a look at the growth of Lithuania’s fintech sector.
  • ACI Worldwide to drive real-time payments for 17 banks in Hungary.
  • Belarus turns to the example of Lithuania as the country considers how to regulate fintech.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Sharia’h compliant insurance solution provider Solidarity Bahrain opts for core insurance system from TCS Bancs.
  • Al Bawaba looks at how Egyptian banks are moving toward digitization and embracing fintech.
  • Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority and United Arab Emirates Central Bank announce plans for a blockchain-based digital currency to improve financial settlements between the two countries.

Central and South Asia

  • Indian alternative credit scoring startup CreditVidya raises $3 million in funding.
  • A partnership between 11 banks in India has led to the country’s first blockchain-linked funding for SMEs.
  • Reserve Bank of India (RBI) launches Ombudsman Scheme for Digital Transactions to improve response to complaints regarding digital transactions.

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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 South Asia

  • India-based investment app Groww picks up $6.2 million in BBVA-led Series A funding.
  • Uzbekistan’s Digital Trust Fund inks deal with tokenization and securitization service provider BANKEX to bring blockchain technology to government agencies.
  • Entrepreneur.com India interviews Razorpay CTO and co-founder Shashank Kumar.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Jamaica Stock Exchange announces successful digital asset trading pilot with Canadian fintech Blockstation.
  • Bolsa de Valores de Panamá goes live with new trading system from Nasdaq.
  • Private equity firm Advent buys $1.42 billion majority stake in Prisma Medios de Pago, an Argentina-based payments firm.
  • Mexican challenger bank Albo raises $7.4 million Series A.

Asia-Pacific

  • IBM announces $250 million partnership with the Bank of the Philippine Islands.
  • UNPay founder Zhang Zhenghua named as 2018 Golden Shell Award’s inaugural “Payment Industry Pioneer.”
  • Hong Kong’s Atom cryptocurrency exchange, AAX, prepares for Hong Kong launch in the first half of this year.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Absa to deploy AI to help customers in South Africa switch bank accounts.
  • Nigeria’s Nairametrics lists its Fintech companies to watch out for in 2019.
  • The first online insurance distribution solution in Mozambique, Askari Fintech, opens for business.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Bankart wins final approval from Slovenian Central Bank to go live with Net’s instant payment solution.
  • CryptoNews looks at the rise in interest in fintech and blockchain technology in Lithuania.
  • Czech fintech Twisto to launch operations in Romania.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • New partnership helps Moven grow in MENA.
  • Iraq’s Al Mustashar Islamic Bank goes live with ICS Financial Systems’ core banking system, ICS Banks Islamic.
  • Entrepreneur.com talks with Padmini Gupta, co-founder and CEO of UAE-based fintech Rise about democratizing access to financial services.

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

  • Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) inks memorandum of understanding (MoU) with U.K.’s Innovate Finance.
  • Emirates NBD leverages technology from Tata Consultancy Services to upgrade its payment system.
  • Al Monitor looks at the “fast-changing landscape” of fintech in Iran.

Central and South Asia

  • Alipay drives Pakistan’s first blockchain-based cross-border remittance service.
  • India’s Reliance Jio prepares to enter the PoS devices market.
  • ZestMoney receives venture debt funding from Alteria Capital.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Cosan SA to launch “the Alipay of Brazil,” processing payments and money transfers via smartphone.
  • Latin American PSP allpago expands payment service to Chile.
  • Forbes.com features a glowing review of new legislation in Mexico to regulate fintech.

Asia-Pacific

  • Loanstreet to offer first online platform for motorcycle insurance in Malaysia.
  • Vietnamese payment app, Momo, picks up Series C investment in round led by Warburg Pincus.
  • SBI Holdings and Germany’s Wefox partner to launch new insurtech venture, SBI Wefox Asia, in Japan.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • London Stock Exchange Group honors African fintech 4G Capital.
  • Business Insider’s Pulse reviews the top lending platforms in Nigeria.
  • South Africa’s Personal Finance shares a few predictions on fintech in South Africa for 2019.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Take a look at our feature on the rise of fintech in CEE: Finding Fintech’s Future in Emerging Europe.
  • Sberbank partners with Russian supermarket chain Azbuka Vkusa to enable payment by fingerprint.
  • Allianz Bank Bulgaria partners with Software Group to launch a new digital transformation project.

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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

  • Gazprombank plans to offer crypto asset custody services later this year in collaboration with Metaco and Avaloq.
  • PYMNTS.com looks at how B2B payments companies in Russia are leveraging the successes of the country’s B2C payments industry.
  • Czech banks anticipate the availability of Apple Pay in the Czech Republic by February or March of 2019.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • UAE-based financial product comparison portal, Yallacompare, raises $8 million in funding.
  • Central Bank of Kuwait (CBK) goes live with Tata Consultancy Services’ TCS Bancs.
  • Al Bawaba examines the reasons behind Egypt’s relatively slow adoption of fintech.

Central and South Asia

  • Telenor Microfinance Bank unveils Pakistan’s first blockchain-based cross-border remittance service with technology developed by Alipay.
  • PYMNTS.com looks back at a “huge year” for funding for Indian tech startups in 2018, including $300 million raised by mobile wallet app Paytm.
  • Commercial Bank of Ceylon teams up with Tenpay Payment Technology to launch WeChat Pay in Sri Lanka.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Bloomberg discusses the relationship between Chinese investment in mobile commerce and the growth of Latin America’s tech sector.
  • Brazilian energy holding company Cosan introduces digital wallet, Payly, for QR code payments and mobile transfers.
  • Chilean government considers levying a tax of up to 19% on global e-commerce companies with local operations.

Asia-Pacific

  • Seven Bank of Japan to adds face recognition functionality to its ATMs to enable “on the spot” account opening.
  • New $200 million investment to support KinerjaPay’s expansion into P2P lending and mobile payments.
  • Reuters reports that China is examining ways to provide lower cost financing, including via bonds and bank lending, to the nation’s small businesses.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • South African government establishes crypto task force to develop a comprehensive government response to cryptocurrencies, including the taxing of crypto asset transactions.
  • Fintech Circle partners with the African Fintech Network to launch its fintech education courses for African countries.
  • Coin Idol considers the prospect of a crypto bubble developing in Africa.

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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

  • Mastercard partners with Kenya-based PSP, DGO Group, to enable 40,000+ African merchants to accept Mastercard payments.
  • Forbes looks at the founding role of women in Africa’s fintech industry.
  • QuartzAfrica’s review of 2018 begins with a discussion of partnerships between Nigerian fintechs and “global payment giants.”

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Estonian fintech startup CostPocket wins Rockstart pitch competition at the Digital Freedom Festival.
  • Trulioo announces its ID verification services are now available in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
  • Russia-based Oz Forensics wins Fintech Startup of the Year award at India FinTech Awards 2018.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • ACI Worldwide helps the National Bank of Kuwait launch Swift’s global payments innovation (gpi).
  • Albawaba asks “What UAE Startups Should Expect in 2019?”
  • Daily Sabah calls 2018: “The Year of Million-Dollar Startups in Turkey.”

Central and South Asia

  • InstaReM introduces new feature to enhance ability to make multi-currency payments to multiple beneficiaries.
  • Pakistan’s CareemPay is the latest fintech to challenge the country’s payment industry.
  • Indian government announces new initiatives to support fintech innovation.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Forbes profiles “corporate credit cards for startups” specialist Brex and the potential of the company to expand to Brazil by 2021.
  • Mexico’s El Empresario considers the potential for the country’s fintech sector in 2019. In Spanish.
  • iProUP’s Mundo Fintech looks at the fintech industry in Argentina i the wake of the financial crisis. In Spanish.

Asia-Pacific

  • Chinese ride-sharing company Didi Chuxing launches in-app financial services including credit, financing solutions.
  • PaySend inks payments partnership with Vietcombank.
  • TechCrunch features Chinese online consumer lending platform, 360 Finance.

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

  • Singapore-based InstaReM announces new multi-currency feature to make overseas payments easier for SMEs.
  • Myanmar’s biggest privately-owned bank, Kanbawza (KBZ) Bank picks Finastra’s treasury management solution, Fusion Treasury.
  • Government ministries in South Korea partner for joint blockchain project to improve marine logistics and shipping.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Mastercard Foundation Fund for Rural Prosperity (FRP) invests $2.9 million three companies from Burundi, Malawi, and Uganda to support financial inclusion.
  • Nigerian Stock Exchange extends partnership with Nasdaq to continue using its matching engine technology.
  • Kenya’s Capital Markets Authority releases its “FinTech Sandbox Guidance Note” with an initial focus on robo advisors and blockchain technology.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Intelligent CIO looks at the merger of Polish fintechs, Braintri and iCompass.
  • Mastercard partners with Polish Payment Standard to provide contactless payments.
  • New report from Deloitte and ID Finance analyzes the growth of Russia’s private fintech sector.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Iraq’s Hammurabi Commercial Bank to deploy ICS Banks Universal Banking Software Suite.
  • Ripple and UAE Exchange team up to launch blockchain-powered cross-border remittance payment services in Asia in early 2019.
  • Egypt’s Commercial International Bank introduces nation’s first fintech-focused venture capital fund.
  • Clinc Brings Conversational AI to Turkey’s Isbank.

Central and South Asia

  • Obopay teams up with Federal Bank and Mastercard to offer new pre-payment card in India.
  • Indian digital payments firm ePayLater teams up with Cashfree to bring its credit-based payment option to merchants.
  • YourStory features Pune-based fintech startup, Phi Commerce.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Brazilian lender Creditoo announces $1.2 million in new funding.
  • IDB, Finnovista report notes that four out of ten Peruvian fintechs has a female founder.
  • Costa Rica unveils new virtual currency, Ecolones, to encourage recycling.

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