Finovate Alums Earn Spots in CNBC’s 2020 Disruptor 50

Six companies that have demonstrated their fintech innovations on the Finovate stage have been recognized this year by CNBC as part of their Disruptor 50 roster for 2020.

This year’s list, the eighth in the series, is marked by the high number of billion-dollar companies, or “unicorns.” Fully 36 of the firms in the 2020 CNBC Disruptor 50 have reached or surpassed the $1 billion valuation mark. Combined, the 50 companies have raised more than $74 billion in VC funding and achieved an implied market valuation of almost $277 billion.

The companies making the cut range in industry from cybersecurity and healthcare IT to education and, of course, fintech. In fact, the top-ranked company in the 2020 Disruptor 50 is none other than Stripe, the $36 billion payments platform founded in 2010. Stripe earned a #13 ranking in last year’s Disruptor 50 roster, and likely owes its first place appearance this year to a major $600 million funding raising – the company’s largest to date – and the economic and social consequences of the global health crisis.

“With many people throughout the world under lockdown to prevent the spread of Covid-19,” CNBC’s capsule on the company noted, “the move to shopping online has never been greater. That’s good news for digital payments platform Stripe.”

Stripe was not the only fintech to earn high marks from the 2020 Disruptor 50’s methodology. In addition to the half dozen Finovate alums below, some of the other fintechs on this year’s roster include:

  • Virtual bank WeLab (Hong Kong)
  • Digital mortgage company (New York City)
  • “Buy now pay later” e-commerce company Affirm (San Francisco, California)
  • Challenger bank Chime (San Francisco, California)
  • Banking app Dave (Los Angeles, California)
  • Microfinancier TALA (Santa Monica, California)
  • Trading and investing platform Robinhood (Menlo Park, California)

Also earning spots in this year’s list were a pair of insurtech companies, Lemonade and Root Insurance, as well as cybersecurity and biometric authentication firms SentinelOne and CLEAR, respectively.

Here’s a look at the Finovate alums that made this year’s list.

#5 Klarna

  • Founded: 2005
  • Headquarters: Stockholm, Sweden
  • CEO: Sebastian Siemiakowski
  • Valuation: $5.5 billion
  • Previous ranking: #8 in 2016

#8 SoFi

  • Founded: 2011
  • Headquarters: San Francisco, California
  • CEO: Antony Noto
  • Valuation: $4.8 billion
  • Previous ranking: #26 in 2019

#24 Kabbage

  • Founded: 2009
  • Headquarters: Atlanta, Georgia
  • CEO: Rob Frohwein
  • Valuation: $1.1 billion
  • Previous ranking: #14 in 2019

#27 Trulioo

  • Founded: 2011
  • Headquarters: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • CEO: Steve Munford
  • Valuation: N.A.
  • Previous ranking: #37 in 2017

#28 Ripple

  • Founded: 2012
  • Headquarters: San Francisco, California
  • CEO: Brad Garlinghouse
  • Valuation: $10 billion
  • Previous ranking: First appearance

#33 Marqeta

  • Founded: 2010
  • Headquarters: Oakland, California
  • CEO: Jason Gardner
  • Valuation: $4.3 billion
  • Previous ranking: First appearance

Photo by Malte Luk from Pexels

Ripple Signs First Bank Customer for RippleNet Cloud

Blockchain payment solutions company Ripple announced this week it has signed Banco Rendimento to RippleNet Cloud. The addition of the Brazil-based bank marks the first bank to leverage Ripple’s cloud-based solution.

This news comes a year-and-a-half after Banco Rendimento joined RippleNet in 2019. “Migrating our payment infrastructure to RippleNet Cloud allows us to provide our customers with a best-in-class experience,” said Banco Rendimento FX Superintendent Jacques Zylbergeld. “Customers can now enjoy more transparency and easier navigation for both submitting payments and trading. RippleNet also allows us access to global partners, offering a standardized solution, and ensuring the integration and onboarding processes are seamless.”

Banco Rendimento considers itself a pioneer in the international payments space and is working to grow the payments ecosystem with high quality, fair cost solutions. With the implementation of RippleNet Cloud, the bank expects it will increase payment volumes by the first quarter of next year.

RippleNet is Ripple’s global payment network that connects 300+ financial institutions worldwide to enable faster, lower-cost payments. Currently, two dozen non-bank financial services companies, including Azimo, MoneyMatch, iRemit, Usend / Pontual, MoneyGram, and Viamericas, are clients of Ripple’s cloud service. And the customer list is increasing. Ripple reported that in the first quarter of this year, 81% of new RippleNet customers opted for cloud deployment and and 30% of all RippleNet payments are now being sent and/or received through RippleNet Cloud.

Earlier this year, Ripple announced that Azimo, in partnership with Thailand’s Siam Commercial bank (SCB), began leveraging RippleNet to launch instant cross-border payments from Europe to Thailand.

Ripple has offices in San Francisco, Washington D.C., New York, London, Mumbai, Singapore, São Paulo, Reykjavik and Dubai, and counts more than 300 customers around the world. The company’s payments network operates in 45+ countries across six continents. Ripple was founded in 2012 and has since amassed $294 million across 13 rounds of funding. Chris Larsen is founder and CEO.

Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash

Will a Hackathon Help the Fight Against COVID? A Spotlight on Fintech in Asia

The world continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic and financial services and fintech companies are no exception. We’ve taken a look at how lenders are working to help small businesses struggling with cash flow challenges, and how firms are offering their services free of charge during the crisis to help businesses continue operating with as little interruption as possible.

Beyond this, a number of institutions around the world have taken more innovative approaches to helping manage the dislocations caused by COVID-19. Stockholm, Sweden-based Swedbank, for example, has supported hackathons in Latvia and Lithuania dedicated toward finding solutions to help businesses and individuals deal with COVID-19 related issues. The firm announced today that it is sponsoring a global hackathon in April, called “The Global Hack” to broaden the effort to get fintechs involved in the effort.

Swedbank is specifically sponsoring the economy track of the hackathon, which Swedbank Head of Digital Banking and IT Lotta Lovén said would help drive innovation in products designed to help keep markets moving.

“We not only dive into topics that will help our customers and industry through these unprecedented times, but the results will also support the local communities and the society as a whole,” Lovén said.

The Global Hack event is also supported by the European Commission, the World Health Organization, The World Economic Forum, and LinkedIn, among others.

The Fintech Times has just published its special edition on Asia – guest edited by The Finanser’s Chris Skinner. And while the timing does not allow for much consideration of the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on China’s fintech industry, a handful of articles nevertheless feature worth-reading insights on what that industry might look like on the other side of the current public health crisis.

Foremost among them – and having the most relevance for Western audiences – may be Jim Marous’ article, Tomorrow’s Model for Banking Exists Today. Marous, publisher of The Financial Brand, credits “big data, advanced analytics, modern digital technology and an innovation culture” for what he calls “the spectacular growth of innovative financial services in China.” The fact that this innovation is accompanied by – instead of being ahead of – successful financial inclusion makes the achievements of China’s techfin and fintech enterprises all the more worth learning from.

Here is our weekly look at fintech around the world.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Payments platform Paysafe launches Paysafecash in Latvia.
  • Russia’s second-largest bank, VTB Bank, announces big data joint venture with telecom Rostelecom.
  • Polish payments processor KIR partners with Danish authentication solutions provider Cryptomathic.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • PayBy, a fintech based in Abu Dhabi, begins mobile payment services in the UAE.
  • Dubai-based Rise, which provides banking services to underbanked migrant workers in the UAE, raises $1.4 million in funding.
  • Mobile banking services provider Khazna secures seed funding in round led by Egyptian VC Algebra Ventures.

Central and Southern Asia

  • Recko, an Indian fintech that leverages AI to reconcile digital transaction plans, raises $6 million in Series A funding.
  • Fortune India looks at the impact of COVID-19 on India’s fintech industry.
  • The case for an “urgent adoption” of digital cash in Pakistan.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Uruguayn-Mexican fintech Mozper, which specializes in helping parents financially educate their children, raises pre-seed investment of $770,000.
  • Mexico-based digital payment processor Kushki locks in Series A funding in round led by DILA Capital.
  • Brazil’s Cora adds cash flow boosting feature to its SME platform that enables customers that are observing quarantines to purchasing vouchers today from their favorite merchant for goods and services to be picked up later.


  • Japanese digital banking startup Kyash raises $45 million in Series C funding.
  • Hong Kong virtual bank Airstar Bank pilots its virtual banking service.
  • Ripple to power cross-border payments for Thailand’s Siam Commercial Bank.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • South African fintech TaxTim teams up with PwC to support expansion to Nigeria.
  • Zeepay Ghana wins approval for mobile money license.
  • Bank of Zimbabwe inks memorandum of agreement with Apollo Fintech to build a gold-based digital currency.

Top image designed by Freepik

Global Fintech and the COVID-19 Crisis

The fight against the coronavirus pandemic has captured the attention of people all over the world. From medical professionals on the front lines of caring for the sick to small businesses making hard decisions about how to keep their workforces intact during lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, everyone has been touched by the current crisis.

Earlier this week, we took a look at how fintechs and financial services firms are rising to the challenge of the COVID-19 outbreak. Looking at three different areas – safety, digitalization, and service – we saw how companies in countries ranging from Russia and India to the U.K. and the U.S. are lending their insights, talents, and generosity to the cause.

Companies like London-based Aire, a Finovate alum that is offering lenders three months of free access to its credit insight service, are an example of what is happening across the fintech space. “We’re seeing an unprecedented level of change in the market for consumers right now,” company founder and CEO Aneesh Varma said. “Lenders are understandably stretched and struggling to build accurate pictures of their customers in real-time.”

CoinDCX Cashes In: Two weeks ago we interviewed Neeraj Khandelwal, co-founder of Indian cryptocurrency trading platform CoinDCX, on cryptocurrencies and cashlessness. This week, we learned that the company has raised $3 million in Series A funding. The round was led by Polychain Capital, Bain Capital Ventures, and HDR Group. The capital will help the company launch new products, boost R&D efforts and marketing, and build the CoinDCX team.

“As the country’s largest exchange, we are in a position to drive national crypto adoption forward responsibly,” CEO and co-founder Sumit Gupta said. “This successful investment round will go a long way in funding our vision of accelerating India’s growth into a $5 trillion economy.”

Here is our weekly look at fintech around the world.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Kenya-based telecom Safaricom to waive fees for its M-Pesa mobile money service to help customers avoid cash during the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Somalia’s MyBank to deploy Sharia-compliant, core banking technology from Path Solutions.
  • Ghana goes live with its Universal Quick Response (QR) Code and Proxy Pay system.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • SME Finance, a factoring services provider for businesses in the Baltics and Poland, picks up 10 million euro investment from new partner, Citadele Bank of Latvia.
  • Berlin, Germany-based, digital business bank Penta raises 18.5 million euros in new funding.
  • The COVID crisis has authorities in Russia decontaminating cash and urging citizens to use digital payments.
  • Erste Bank Hungary deploys mobile security technology from OneSpan.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • DriveWealth announces its first MENA region partnership: a collaboration with UAE-based wealth management firm, Wealthface.
  • Al Ansari Exchange taps Pelican for financial crime compliance.
  • Emirates’ World Investments commits to investment of $255 million in Australian challenger bank Xinja.

Central and Southern Asia

  • Mobile payments company HUMBL forges new partnership with Digital India Payments.
  • Singapore-based anti-fraud solutions provider Advance.AI opens offices in Bengaluru and Delhi.
  • Indian alt lender Vivriti Capital secures $50 million in Series B funding.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Mexican SME lender Creditjusto raises $100 million in debt financing from Credit Suisse Group.
  • Brazilian fintech Creditas announces plans to boost staff by 500 by the end of the year.
  • Wirecard teams up with Mexico’s Banca Afirme as the German digital payments solutions provider extends further into the Mexican market.


  • TransferWise teams up with Alipay to enable fund transfers to China.
  • Bank of China launches its AI-based FX trading signal app via Eikon.
  • Thai remittance company DeeMoney goes live on RippleNet.

Top image designed by Freepik

Ripple Explains What’s Holding Back Blockchain Adoption

Last fall, blockchain payments company Ripple, in conjunction with Celent, conducted a survey to better understand payment services providers’ adoption of blockchain-based payments. The findings of that study are published in a report issued by Ripple, and illustrates how far the payments industry has come with regards to blockchain adoption, and what’s needed to keep the momentum going.

The study surveyed 1,050+ payment services industry representatives across 21 countries. Overall, it found that:

  • 35% of respondents are in production of a blockchain payments solution
  • 27% are nearing implementation of a blockchain-based payments solution
  • 31% say that the blockchain offers the opportunity to expand existing services into new regions
  • 71% are “very to extremely” interested in digital assets

Ripple indicated that leveraging the blockchain for payments has gained a significant amount of momentum thanks to its fair pricing for end consumers, attractive revenue for payments providers, and the overall level of trust placed in the technology.

Now all that’s needed is to pick up the pace of adoption– but what is holding back mass adoption of the technology? Ripple’s study identifies three drivers responsible for faster blockchain adoption:

Faster implementation

Payments companies are concerned about implementing a blockchain-based payments solution because they are worried it will be expensive and difficult to integrate into their existing platform. In fact, a third of respondents to the study cited implementation as a concern of using the blockchain for payments.


When integrating new technology into existing platforms, regulatory hurdles are almost always a concern. With blockchain technology, however, this seems to be even more true, especially with legacy financial institutions. As one would expect, regulatory concerns of digital banking providers are less acute, since they are accustomed to operating using non-traditional models.

Digital assets

One of the top perceived benefits of using the blockchain for payments is the time savings. In fact, three quarters of the survey respondents were interested in leveraging the blockchain for digital assets in cross-border money transfers. Fueling this interest is the speed at which these transactions can occur when compared to traditional payments. The study found that early adopters of blockchain technology are most interested in using digital assets.

Russia Gets a New Tech Billionaire as U.K. Fintechs Get Funded

Russia has a new tech billionaire. The $500 million raised by financial platform Revolut this week not only establishes the U.K.-based business as the country’s most valuable fintech. It also makes its founder and CEO, Moscow-born Nikolay Storonsky, the latest fintech billionaire to come from the Russian Republic.

The investment was led by Technology Crossover Ventures – a U.S. firm – and takes Revolut’s total capital to $836 million. Revolut now sports a valuation of $5.5 billion.

Storonsky’s net worth figure – on paper, at least – is based on a Forbes report from last February in which he noted that his stake in Revolut was being diluted to 30%.

As part of this big week for U.K. fintechs, SME lender iwoca picked up $109 million funding and expansion into Germany. B-Social, a social payments app based in London, raised $10 million ahead of its transformation into a fully-licensed challenger bank later this year. And Azimo partnered with fellow Finovate alum Ripple to facilitate cross-border payments to the Philippines.

This week on, we featured a profile of Innovate Israel founder and CEO Itai Green and his thoughts on open innovation and collaboration between corporates and startups. We also highlighted Finovate newcomer Sonect, a Swiss company that demonstrated its Best of Show winning virtual cash network at FinovateEurope earlier this month.

Here is our weekly look at fintech around the world.

Central and Southern Asia

  • Indian fintech PhoneParLoan announces new investment from accelerator MOX. The amount of the funding was not disclosed.
  • Bengaluru-based digital billpay company XPay Life goes live in India.
  • Envestnet | Yodlee acquires Indian data aggregator

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • AlphaCredit, a Mexico City-based fintech, raises $125 million in round led by the SoftBank Innovation Fund.
  • Mexico issues its first license – to NVIO Pagos Mexico – under its new fintech law.
  • U.S. Bancorp’s merchant acquirer subsidiary, Elavon, sells its Mexican operations to banking group Santander.


  • Azimo taps Ripple for cross-border payments to the Philippines.
  • Philippines-based Tonik Financial raises $6 million ahead of the launch of its new digital offering.
  • Malaysia’s biggest telecom, Axiata Group, is the latest company in the country to announce plans to pursue a digital banking license.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • South Africa’s Jumo raises $55 million in combined debt and equity funding.
  • Nigeria’s The Nation looks at how fintech empowers startups.
  • Kenyan B2B e-commerce platform Sokowatch locks in $14 million Series A funding.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Mastercard expands its partnership with Rakuten Viber to bring P2P payments to Romania.
  • A new $500 million funding round for Revolut makes the company’s founder and CEO Nikolay Storonsky Russia’s latest tech billionaire.
  • Apple Pay goes live in Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Kashat, an Egyptian mobile app that offers short-term loans of up to $95 to the underbanked, goes live in Cairo and Alexandria.
  • Jordanian SME lending marketplace Liwwa raises $5 million in growth funding.
  • A new agreement between Tencent Holdings and Network International will expand WeChat Pay’s presence in the UAE.

Top image designed by Freepik

Azimo Taps Ripple for Cross-Border Payments to the Philippines

Digital money transfer service Azimo announced today that it has partnered with fellow Finovate alum and blockchain payment solutions company Ripple to power cross-border payments to the Philippines.

Fueling these payment transfers is Ripple’s On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) solution that uses XRP to source liquidity and complete money transfers within three seconds. This time reduction results in a 40% to 60% cost savings over the traditional method that requires businesses to hold cash in pre-funded accounts. ODL has proven especially useful for international payments in emerging markets. The technology is currently available in the U.S., Mexico, Australia, Europe, and the Philippines, with plans to expand across APAC, EMEA, and LATAM.

Azimo, which plans to expand its use of ODL to more markets in 2020, opted to start with the Philippines because it is one of the top remittance destinations. In 2018, the region received $34 billion in remittance payments.

Ripple’s ODL

“We’ve been interested for a long time in the potential of digital assets like XRP to make cross-border payments better for customers,” said Azimo CEO Richard Ambrose. ”Ripple’s ODL solution has significantly reduced the cost and delivery time for cross-border transfers, and our customers are seeing the benefits. As more banks and financial institutions use ODL, we believe it has the potential to replace current methods of foreign exchange trading and to reduce settlement time to close to zero.”

Founded in 2012, Azimo has amassed one million customers. The company facilitates money transfers from 25 countries to more than 200 regions across the globe.

Ripple has 300+ customers in more than 45 countries and six continents. The company’s flagship global blockchain network, RippleNet, facilitates faster and cheaper payments in 40+ currencies.

Digital Dollars and E-Euros: The Case for National Digital Currencies

India is the latest country to announce that it is looking into development of a national digital currency – or what’s known in the industry as a Central Bank Issued Currency (CBDC). In recent weeks and months, we’ve heard news of a growing number of central banks investigating the pros and cons of digitizing their money supply. Japan announced last week that it is considering the advantage of a “digital yen.” The Central Bank of the Bahamas is also examining the issue, as is, ahem, North Korea. Tunisia made fintech headlines last fall when a Russian news agency reported the country had digitized its currency. But Tunisian authorities have since denied the story.

The case for digitizing national currencies includes the idea that, at a minimum, central banks need to keep up with – if not get ahead of – the trend toward the digitization of money. More constructively, central bank-issued digital currencies (CBDC) could provide significant benefits in terms of reducing the costs and risks to the payments system and, according to a 2018 report from the IMF, “could help encourage financial inclusion.”

However as the report makes clear, there are a wide variety of risks associated with CBDCs – the most immediate of which may be a simple lack of demand. The IMF’s Christine Lagarde made the point a few years ago in her address subtitled “The Case for New Digital Currency,” delivered at the Singapore Fintech Festival. The same “winds of change” that are driving central bankers to consider digitizing the money supply are also stimulating innovation in other forms of payment and value-storage. Any digital currency issued by a central bank still would have to compete with digital payment and value-storage offerings from the private sector.

In some ways, this is the most interesting consideration in the debate over digital currencies. Issues of safety and anonymity remain paramount, and themes like regional specificity remind us that what works for one geography may not work for another. But it is increasingly easier to imagine a world in which digital national currencies exist than it is to imagine a world in which they do not.

For more on the national digital currency movement around the world, check out Stephen O’Neal’s in-depth examination of the topic in Cointelegraph from the summer of 2018. O’Neal divided the world of state-issued currencies into the Adopters, the Rejectors, the Experimenters, and the Researchers. Note that Tunisia, as reported above, is no longer in the Adopters category, however the country’s central bank did note that it is “exploring” digital payment options including CBDC.

Additionally, some of the countries that have rejected national digital currencies have appeared to reconsider in recent years. A report from last fall suggested that private bankers and lenders in Germany, for example, have expressed interest in a form of “digital central bank money.”

This week on the Finovate blog we celebrated the second birthday of PSD2 in Europe, and highlighted the advances Israeli startup and Finovate Best of Show winner has made in deploying voice AI in customer service. We also previewed our upcoming FinovateEurope Venture Capital All Stars presentation on fintech investment trends in Europe.

Here is our weekly look at fintech around the world.


  • Contour, a blockchain-based trade finance platform headquartered in Singapore, announces investment of undisclosed size from Standard Chartered.
  • Malaysian cross-border payments company Tranglo integrates with Ripple.
  • Digital-only banks may be coming to Thailand as the country’s central bank considers offering digital banking licenses.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • South African fintech Oyi launches prepaid medical savings card.
  • Inlaks, a Nigeria-based ICT infrastructure solutions provider, introduces new line of “ultramodern” ATMs that feature the ability to access customer service via a live video connection.
  • FinTech4U Accelerator names the five Zambian fintechs that will join its program this month.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Leading browser provider Opera acquires Estonian banking-as-a-service startup Pocosys.
  • German fintech Heidelpay is on the hunt for acquisition opportunities and is considering an IPO.
  • EU Startups features Cashpresso in its look at top Austrian startups to watch in 2020.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Arab News features Nosaibah Alrajhi, founder of Shariah-compliant P2P lending platform Forus, scheduled to go live in Saudi Arabia later this year.
  • Al Khaleej Bank of Sudan to deploy Path Solution’s core banking iMAL platform.
  • The Central Bank of Egypt completes eKYC pilot.

Central and Southern Asia

  • A digital rupee? That’s the proposal from India’s National Institute for Smart Government (NISG).
  • Fintechs are not the only ones disrupting financial services in India. Increasingly, smartphone brands are getting into the act.
  • Indian fintech startup Mera Cashier raises $250,000 in seed funding.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Softbank strikes again! The Japanese firm has led a $125 million Series B round for Mexico’s AlphaCredit.
  • Americas Quarterly looks at ways that fintech can become “a priority” in Latin America.
  • Olivia, a Brazilian financial wellness app, raises $5 million in funding from BV (formerly Banco Votorantim).

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. 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.

Top image designed by Freepik

Siam Commercial Bank Taps Ripple for Cross-Border Payments

Thailand’s biggest bank by assets, Siam Commercial Bank (SCB), announced it has partnered with blockchain solutions company Ripple. SCB will leverage Ripple’s RippleNet to power the cross-border payment offering in its mobile app, SCB Easy for the app’s 9+ million users.

RippleNet is Ripple’s global payment network that works across 40+ currencies and consists of more than 200 financial institutions. Because RippleNet leverages the blockchain, users are able to track funds, delivery time, and status.

“It is so difficult to send and receive money today. People must physically go to a bank branch, fill out long and complicated forms and wait for payments to be received—with no transparency,” said SCB’s SVP of Commercial Banking, Arthit Sriumporn. “With our service, their loved ones from abroad can transfer payment and receive money immediately.”

SCB is also working with Ripple and EMVCo to add a QR code-based payment solution to SCB Easy. Once complete, the QR codes will enable users to make payments without using the local currency.

This isn’t SCB’s first partnership with Ripple. The bank first partnered with Ripple in 2018 when it became the first financial institution using RippleNet to pilot multi-hop, a tool that enables banks to settle frictionless payments on behalf of other banks in the network.

Ripple has offices in San Francisco, New York, London, Luxembourg, Mumbai, Singapore, Sydney, and Brazil. Ripple recently closed $200 million in a Series C round, bringing the company’s total funding to $321 million and boosting its valuation to $10 billion.

Ripple Raises $200 Million in Series C Investment

In a Series C led by Tetragon, payments innovator Ripple has picked up an investment of $200 million. Featuring participation from SBI Holdings and Route 66 Ventures, the round takes the Ripple’s total capital to more than $321 million, and gives the firm a valuation of $10 billion.

In a statement, company CEO Brad Garlinghouse explained that the funding will help fuel expansion of the company’s “open developer platform for money” Xpring, as well as enable Ripple to add talent to the team.

“We are in a strong financial position to execute against our vision,” Garlinghouse said. “As others in the blockchain space have slowed their growth or even shut down, we have accelerated our momentum and industry leadership throughout 2019.”

The funding is timely for Xpring, which Ripple recently configured to make it easier for both crypto and non-crypto developers to add payments functionality into mobile apps. The new platform leverages Ripple’s XRP Ledger, Interledger, and Web Monetization technologies that give developers tools, services, and programs that empower them to develop and power wallets and exchanges, as well as take advantage of monetization opportunities in content and gaming.

The investment also comes as Ripple completes a year in which its RippleNet global payments network added more than 300 customers. Additionally, Ripple’s $50 million dollar strategic partnership with MoneyGram, announced this summer, has enabled the company to demonstrate how its On-Demand Liquidity solution leverages Ripple’s digital asset XRP to help MoneyGram boost volume on international money transfers. As of November, MoneyGram reported that is moving 10% of its Mexican peso trading volume via Ripple’s technology.

“Our partnership with Ripple is transformative for both the traditional money transfer and digital asset industry,” MoneyGram Chairman and CEO Alex Holmes said. “For the first time ever, we’re settling currencies in seconds.”

Chris Larsen, co-founder of Ripple, introduced the Ripple protocol at FinovateSpring 2013 via a company called OpenCoin. Headquartered in San Francisco, California, Ripple began the year by earning a spot on the 2019 Forbes Fintech 50 Roster. In addition to its partnership with MoneyGram, Ripple announced in August that PNC, the eighth largest bank in the U.S. had begun using its RippleNet network for cross-border payments – the first U.S. bank to do so.

On the international front this year, Ripple has teamed up with Vietnam’s TPBank, partnered with Brazilian brokerage Frente Corretora de Cambio, and inked a cross-border remittance agreement with India’s Federal Bank.

Finovate Alumni News


  • WeInvest Bolsters its WealthTech with the Launch of StratWealth.
  • Kofax Embraces AI and ML as Intelligent Automation Platform Evolves
  • Financial Literacy Focused Best of Show Winner Zogo Unveils 11 New Partners

Around the web

  • Thurgauer Kantonalbank integrates Avaloq’s e-banking solution to its existing platform.
  • MoneyGram launching Ripple’s XRP in multiple markets.
  • FIS brings core banking technology to Apple Bank.

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.

Saudi Arabia Bets Big on Fintech; Sberbank Unveils Russian Supercomputer

As Finovate goes increasingly global, so does our coverage of financial technology. 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.

Fresh off a successful return to Singapore for FinovateAsia, we are happy to announce that FinovateMiddleEast will be back in Dubai later this month, November 20 and 21. For more information about our upcoming fintech conference in the UAE, visit our FinovateMiddleEast page today.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Saudi Arabia’s Riyad Bank invests $26.7 million in new fintech startup investment program.
  • BankDhofar signs partnership agreement with Oman-based fintech TelyPay.
  • Central Bank of UAE considers new fintech office to help drive innovation in financial services.

Central and Southern Asia

  • A new B2B fintech program for Indian fintechs, FT Slingshot, launched at Hong Kong FinTech Week.
  • Mumbai, India’s financial capital, is seeking to establish itself as the countr’s fintech hub, as well.
  • Eight Indian fintechs, including Paytm and OlaMoney, earn spots in the KPMG and H2 Ventures Fintech 100 list.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Mexican cryptoexchange Bitrus introduces new e-wallet geared toward unbanked population.
  • Creditas, a Brazilian digital consumer lending platform, opens new offices in Valencia, Spain.
  • Born2Invest looks at the growth of the fintech sector in Argentina.


  • Tandem Bank, a challenger bank based in the U.K., announces plans for an expansion to Hong Kong.
  • Vietnam’s TPBank forges agreement with Ripple’s RippleNet.
  • International visitors to China have access to a new prepaid card service run by Alipay and supported by Bank of Shanghai.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • South African fintech iKhokha offers a blunt assessment of the country’s struggle to attract the talent necessary to grow its fintech industry.
  • The U.K. announces plans to deepen fintech partnership with Nigeria and other Africa nations.
  • Andrew Takyi-Appiah, CEO of Ghana-based Zeepay, talks about the business of remittances and its recent partnership with Moneygram.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Romanian fintech Beez goes live in the U.K.
  • Fiserv inks global agreement with German grocery industry leader ALDI.
  • Sberbank introduces Russia’s fastest supercomputer, the Christofari.

Top image designed by Freepik