The ruling is subject to appeal. But for now, advocates for cryptocurrency trading in India have won the day: the Supreme Court of India has overturned a ban on cryptocurrencies that was issued by the Reserve Bank of India in 2018.
Specifically, the Reserve Bank forbade Indian banks from working with cryptocurrency exchanges out of concerns ranging from “consumer protection” to “market integrity.” And while India’s participation in the worldwide cryptocurrency market is modest (less than 5% when the ban was instituted), the reaction to the ruling was strong, with a number of cryptocurrency exchanges challenging the Reserve Bank in court. This week, the court sided with the exchanges, observing that no bank regulated by the Reserve Bank had been negatively affected by cryptocurrency trading before the ban, and that a complete ban was thus a disproportionate response.
That said, the ban is not yet a settled matter. The RBI plans to file a review petition with the Supreme Court, again citing systemic risk concerns for the country’s banking system should trading in cryptocurrencies be permitted. As of now, however, cryptocurrency exchanges and platforms in the country are free to operate, legal experts say.
FinovateAsia alum TurnKey Lender will help leading Cambodian financial services institution Sambat improve its loan application processing courtesy of a newly-announced partnership. Sambat, which serves both retail customers as well as micro, small, and medium-sized businesses, will use TurnKey Lender’s Unified Lending Solution to accelerate loan decisioning, increase portfolio profitability, and boost customer lifetime value.
TurnKey Lender CEO Dmitry Voronenko praised Sambat as one of Cambodia’s “early adopters of the fully digital approach to banking.” Managing Director for Sambat Harvey Poh called the deployment a “major milestone” and “a testament to our commitment to deliver digital financial services to our customers.”
Founded in 2014, TurnKey Lender has a U.S. headquarters in Austin, Texas, and maintains offices in Singapore; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and the Philippines. The company was recognized by Frost & Sullivan’s Asia-Pacific Best Practices Awards at the beginning of the year, taking home top honors in the Singapore Fintech Industry New Product Innovation category.
Here is our weekly look at fintech around the world.
Latin America and the Caribbean
- Brazilian challenger bank Nubank launches its Nu credit card in Mexico.
- Chilean venture capital fund Magma Partners closes its $50 million fund, the largest ever raised by the firm.
- Peruvian fintech Ayllu announces project to map out of all the fintech startups in the country.
- Turnkey Lender forges partnership with leading Cambodian financial institution, Sambat Finance.
- Huobi Thailand offers baht-to-crypto currency trading.
- Mastercard to play leading role in Series B investment for Indonesian fintech Digiasia.
- Cointelegraph takes a deep dive into the emerging fintech economies of Kenya, Ethiopia, and Ghana.
- A new payment license requirement may complicate life for Nigerian fintechs.
- FLASH International, based in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, announces an initiative to fund fintech startups in the country.
Central and Eastern Europe
- Wirecard partners with Estonia-based Xolo to serve the gig economy.
- Finovate’s sister publication, Fintech Futures, profiles Polish digital banking provider and Finovate alum Efigence.
- Polish asset manager Skarbiec TFI teams up with fintech solution provider NeoXam to enhance its portfolio management.
Middle East and Northern Africa
- The UAE’s National Bank of Fujairah to leverage the RippleNet network to provide real-time, cross-border fund transfers to India.
- Dubai International Financial Center announces a tripling of the size of its Fintech Hive.
- Monoco’s Privatam, which offers structured investment products, goes live in Dubai.
Central and Southern Asia
- Indian SME lender SMEcorner raises $30 million in Series B funding.
- Supreme Court of India overturns Central Bank’s ban on cryptocurrency trading.
- Leap Financial, a fintech platform that specializes in providing financing to Indian students studying abroad, secures $5.5 million in round led by Sequoia India.