Nigerian Fintechs Near $400m Week; Ant Financial Eyes License in Singapore

The nearly-$400 million poured into fintech companies in Nigeria alone this week is being remarked upon as a testament to the growing investor interest in sub-Saharan Africa. The three recipients of the new capital in recent days are OPay ($120 million), Interswitch ($200 million), and PalmPay ($40 million). The investors include Sequoia Capital China and SoftBank Ventures Asia, as well as China’s Transsion and Visa.

For comparison, African fintechs raised $357 million in all of 2018, according to a 2019 report from the GSM Association, The Mobile Economy, Sub-Saharan Africa. Quoted in the Financial Times on the week’s funding news, Guaranty Trust Bank chief executive Segun Agbaje credited the payments industry for the surge in investment, calling the growth in the sector “probably like no other on the continent.”

Finovate made its African debut last year in Cape Town, South Africa. For an in-depth look at recent trends in African fintech, check out Jonathan Gregson’s “Africa’s Fintech Makeover.”

China’s impact on international fintech is also evident in the news that Ant Financial is considering applying for a virtual banking license in Singapore. Successfully securing such a license would enable Ant Financial to compete against Chinese incumbents like DBS Group Holdings and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. Ant Financial secured a license to operate a digital wallet in Hong Kong last year.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Brazil’s digital bank Neon raises $94 million in round led by General Atlantic and Brazil Banco Votorantim.
  • Biz Latin Hub’s Craig Dempsey makes the case for Mexico as the fintech sector to watch in 2020.
  • Mexican non-bank wallet service Todito Cash inks partnerships with four financial payment solutions companies.

Asia-Pacific

  • Ant Financial may be one the hunt for a Singaporean virtual banking license, reports Bloomberg, following the online finance titan’s recent scoring of a license to operate a digital wallet in Hong Kong.
  • InstaReM rebrands as Nium, announces cross border payments partnership with Cambodian banking group, PhillipBank.
  • Indonesia’s biggest banking group, Bank Mandiri will use the Avaloq’s Banking Suite to run its wealth management division, which has $14 billion in assets under management.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Nigeria’s OPay raises $120 million in new funding. The investment adds to the $50 million the mobile payments service raised in June.
  • Asilimia, a Kenya-based fintech that helps SMEs access more efficient mobile payment solutions, secures $350,000 in funding.
  • South African digital commerce fintech Vectra wins Seedstars Cape Town competition.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Revolut reaches 250,000 users in Hungary and reports an 8x gain in monthly transaction volume since the beginning of the year.
  • Latvia-based, P2P lending platform TWINO surpasses €1 billion euros in originated loans.
  • Tradeshift moves Bucharest team to larger office in Tower Center, announces plans to hire more staff next year.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • A partnership between BPC and WeNet will bring a new instant payments system to Yemen.
  • ZagTrader wins full certification for its market making technology from Bourse Kuwait.
  • In partnership with the Dubai Financial Services Authority, Wethaq pilots Sukuk issuance on its securities market infrastructure.

Central and Southern Asia

  • Perfios, a fintech software company based in Bengaluru, raises $50 million from Warburg Pincus and Bessemer Venture Partners.
  • Pakistan’s Askari Bank selects Finastra’s trade finance solution.
  • CredoLabNeener Analytics, and Vymo win finalist spots in the India FinTech Forum’s IFTA 2019 awards.

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • How Revolut and Mastercard Are Helping Fintech Do Good
  • Keepabl Partners with ClauseMatch to Boost GDPR Compliance
  • More Than $1 Billion Raised by 21 Finovate Alums in Q3 2019

Around the web

  • Gartner names Exagens a 2019 “Cool Vendor.”
  • Trulioo appoints Zac Cohen as chief operating officer.
  • Trustly reaches 100 live gaming brands with its Pay N Play player registration and verification product.
  • Tradeshift moves Bucharest team to larger office in Tower Center, announces plans to hire more staff next year.
  • Globitex taps Salt Edge for strong customer authentication.
  • After Belfast launch earlier this year, Signifyd recruits 63 people with plans to recruit 150 more over the next three to five years.
  • Revolut and Mastercard team up with Save The Children to support Universal Children’s Day.
  • The San Diego Union-Tribune names Jack Henry & Associates a top place to work in San Diego for the fourth year in a row.
  • CredoLab, Neener Analytics, and Vymo win finalist spots in the India FinTech Forum’s IFTA 2019 awards.
  • Chetu ranked as the number two of 50 top software development firms in the U.S.
  • Payments company VoPay teams up with Plaid to offer a new credit card alternative to consumers in North America.

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

  • ID R&D’s Voice Biometric Solution Satisfies Need for Speed, Omni-Channel Reach.
  • Finovate Global: Open Banking Advances in Nigeria; Singapore’s soCash Secures $6M Series B.
  • Paysend Garners $10.6 Million in Funding.

Around the web

  • PassTime partners with masterQueue to help locate and contact customers for debt collection.
  • Five Degrees is selected to join the Kickstart innovation program.
  • Voleo, Neener Analytics, Gremln Social, and Digital Onboarding all successfully complete 2019 FIS Fintech Accelerator program.

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

  • Mastercard’s Mobile Payment Service Pay by Bank Teams Up with Yoyo.
  • Trulioo Teams with Refinitiv for Financial Inclusion.
  • Workfusion Brings Robotic Process Automation Global with New Partnership.
  • OneSpan Unveils its Secure Agreement Automation Solution.

Around the web

  • Splitit (formerly PayItSimple) announces partnership with Hong Kong-based EFTPay.
  • bpm’online launches its new tool for collaborative process design, bpm’online Studio Free.
  • Wipro to acquire digital engineering and manufacturing solutions firm, International TechneGroup Inc. (ITI).
  • Business Cloud UK interviews Andrew Bud, CEO and founder of Best of Show winner, iProov.
  • Four Finovate alums – Digital Onboarding, Gremlin Social, Voleo, and Neener Analyticsearn spots in the fourth Venture Center FinTech Accelerator program sponsored by Fidelity Information Services.
  • Inside Secure ships Whitebox Designer, a new software security tool.
  • Featurespace to power transaction monitoring for Permanent TSB.
  • Jumio wins the 2019 Fortress Cyber Security Award for Authentication and Identity from the Business Intelligence Group.

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

  • Onfido Delivers ID Verification to Mobility-as-a-Service Firm Drover.
  • Segmint powers data analytics for Buzz Points.

Around the web

  • Paysend announces its new stablecoin will be available on the Stellar Network in June.
  • LoanScorecard forges partnership with Calyx Software, merging its SimpleCECL solution with Calyx’s Path LOS.
  • Digital Onboarding will join Best of Show winners Voleo and Neener Analytics as part of the fourth annual FIS Fintech Accelerator program.
  • Chartis Research recognizes FICO as a category leader in AI for Financial Services.
  • Judo Bank of Australia goes live with Temenos’ T24.
  • Xero launches new feature in the Xero Projects iOS app that suggests project time based on geolocation

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.

FinovateSpring Best of Show Winners Announced

It’s been great to be back in the city by the bay!

After two days of live fintech demos, the attendees of FinovateSpring here in San Francisco have made their selections as to which fintech products, services, and solutions were interesting, impressive, and innovative enough to earn one of our coveted Best of Show awards.

From solutions to help consumers better access credit to technologies that bolster the fight against fraud to “Is this @#$% real?!” demonstrations of AI-powered agents that sound – and feel – as real as any human, this year’s Best of Show winners are truly in a class of their own.

Arkose Labs for its technology that solves multi-million dollar fraud problems for the world’s most targeted businesses with zero impact to user conversion. Video.

Blytzpay for its text-to-pay solution that makes billing and communication simple, streamlined, and secure, while providing flexibility to pay by card, check, or cash. Video.

BlueRush for Individeo, an interactive and personalized video platform for financial institutions to drive online sales success. Video.

Everplans for its solution that helps advisors create better interactions, establish new connections, strengthen relationships, and gain introductions to heirs. Video.

Glia (formerly SaleMove) for its technology that creates digital-first moments that simplify and transform communication between companies and their customers using messaging, video/voice, co-browsing, and AI. Video.

Invest Sou Sou for its smart social banking account designed to help community banks cultivate low-cost deposits and credit-ready borrowers in a secure and cost-efficient way. Video.

Neener Analytics for its regulatory compliant social media analytics platform that delivers specific individual risk outcomes for thin-file, no-file, and credit-challenged consumers. Video.

Voca AI for its smart, human, and empathetic virtual call center agent for financial institutions and service providers. Video.

A thousand thanks to all our demoing companies, our sponsors and partners, and, most importantly, our awesome attendees whose passion and enthusiasm for fintech innovation makes our events all the more engaging and entertaining. We’ll see you next year!

Notes on methodology:
1. Only audience members NOT associated with demoing companies were eligible to vote. Finovate employees did not vote.
2. Attendees were encouraged to note their favorites during each day. At the end of the last demo, they chose their three favorites.
3. The exact written instructions given to attendees: “Please rate (the companies) on the basis of demo quality and potential impact of the innovation demoed.”
4. The eight companies appearing on the highest percentage of submitted ballots were named “Best of Show.”
5. Go here for a list of previous Best of Show winners through 2014. Best of Show winners from our 2015 through 2018 conferences are below:
FinovateEurope 2015
FinovateSpring 2015
FinovateFall 2015
FinovateEurope 2016
FinovateSpring 2016
FinovateFall 2016
FinovateAsia 2016
FinovateEurope 2017
FinovateSpring 2017
FinovateFall 2017
FinovateAsia 2017
FinovateMiddleEast 2018
FinovateEurope 2018
FinovateSpring 2018
FinovateFall 2018
FinovateAsia 2018
FinovateAfrica 2018
FinovateEurope 2019

Finovate Alumni News

On Finovate.com

  • NYMBUS Helps Drive PNB’s New Digital Only Bank.

Around the web

  • Mercury Payment Solutions and Arion Bank select Fiserv AML Technology.
  • Challenger bank Monzo to use Jumio’s Netverify for customer identity authentication.
  • Neener Analytics selected by FIS for investment and participation in The Venture Center Accelerator
  • Launchfire wins Gold at the 2019 Hermes Creative Awards.
  • Jack Henry & Associates named a Best Place to Work in Kentucky for Seventh Consecutive Year.

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

  • Finovate Alums Shine in 2019 Forbes Fintech 50 Roster.

Around the web

  • Mirror Review features Neener Analytics founder and CEO, Jeff LoCastro on small data and social media analytics.
  • Connecticut’s Guilford Savings Bank to deploy technology from Jack Henry & Associates.
  • BioMetric Signature ID to integrate identity verification technology from Mitek to provide authentication for its BioProof-ID solution.
  • Business Intelligence Group honors Jumio as part of its 2019 BIG Innovation Awards.

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

  • Quid Lands $37.5 Million Round Led by Lexis Nexis Parent
  • NTT DATA Services to Acquire Sierra Systems.

Around the web

  • Equifax partners with consents.online to develop Open Banking solutions.
  • Fiserv powers digital banking platform for Bogota Savings Bank.
  • Neener Analytics launches pilot with MAPFRE Insurance.
  • Best Innovation Group deploys Geezeo PFM SDK.
  • BioCatch partners with 7 tier-one Latin American banks.

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.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Personality Biometrics Specialist Neener Analytics Partners with American Express as part of Accelerate Middle East initiative.
  • Abu Dhabi Global Markets (ADGM) launches its digital sandbox.
  • Ithmaar Bank of Bahrain and Eazy Financial Services partner to launch biometric payment network.
  • Al Salam Bank Bahrain (ASBB) leverages technology from Clayton to launch new mobile banking solution.
  • Saudi Arabia’s National Commercial Bank partners with Ripple for instant settlement of cross-border money transfers.

Central and South Asia

  • Infosys to Acquire Fluido for $76 Million.
  • TPS and DigInc partner to support mircofinancing in Pakistan.
  • Bengaluru’s SlicePay, which provides credit to millennial consumers, announces Series A investment led by China’s FinUp Finance Technology Group.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Argentina-based digital financial services startup MONI raises $4.5 million in funding. In Spanish.
  • Mexico’s much-anticipated Fintech Law goes live.
  • Euromoney profiles Brazilian data management fintech, Quod.

Asia-Pacific

  • Vietnam Prosperity Bank (VPBank) launches its digital brand, Yolo.
  • Indonesia’s B2B marketplace Ralali raises $7 million in new funding.
  • Singapore introduces the first unified payment QR code.
  • ASEAN Financial Innovation Network (AFIN) launches its API Exchange.
  • Moka, a business payments management startup from Indonesia, picks up $24 million in round led by Sequoia India and Southeast Asia.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Jumo, a fintech startup from South Africa that helps provide financing to the underbanked, raises $52 million in round led by Goldman Sachs.
  • Central Bank of Kenya to consider new regulations for the country’s digital lenders.
  • South Africa’s Click2Sure and Finovate alum Entersekt chosen to participate in AlphaCode’s accelerator program.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Nordigen, a credit risk assessment solution provider based in Latvia, announces $800,000 in new funding.
  • Forbes looks at the collaboration between IBM, PwC, and the Czech Republic’s Blockchain Connect Association.
  • Hackernoon makes the case for “developing your fintech solution in Poland.”
  • Which Eastern European country is making the biggest strides when it comes to innovating with blockchain technology? Bitnews Today shares its review of the region.

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