Welcome to The Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup on Tuesday 4 July 2023.
Funding and investments
Digital bank Tandem has bagged £20million in Tier 2 capital from Quilam Capital. The capital raise concluded in late June 2023, following a process supported by financial services advisor Alantra. Tandem says the capital will put extra momentum behind its green lending proposition and allows it to capitalise on a exciting growth opportunities.
Bdeo has raised an additional €7.5million to accelerate its international expansion and strengthen its position across Europe and Latin America. The new financing came from new investors Armilar, Hollard, The Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI), and Íope Ventures. Existing investors K Fund and Blackfin also participated.
Six months following its initial capital raise, wealthtech platform Seeds Investor has added more capital and a new backer in Blank Ventures. This seed extension round brings Seeds’ total funding to date to $4.7million. Also joining this round were existing backers Social Leverage and The Compound Capital Fund I. Seeds will use the funding to more quickly evolve its product.
UK digital bank Kroo has reached 100,000 personal current accounts as it approaches its £15million target in B+ funding to support the higher-than-expected growth. This latest funding round is part of a trajectory of fast growth for the digital challenger bank after launching its flagship current account offering in December 2022.
Citizen, a provider of payment services to the iGaming industry, has appointed Dr Toby Sucharov to the role of chief technology officer. He previously served as Playtech’s head of UK innovation and as head of games platform as a service. At Citizen, he will apply his skills to help introduce and optimise Citizen’s account-to-account payment solution with businesses across a range of sectors and geographies.
ClearCourse, a provider of software and payments for UK SMEs, names Nathan Best as chief operating officer. He will oversee all commercial functions and guide the portfolio of businesses on industry best practices. Best joins from global SaaS platform Xplor Technologies, where he led the UK and European business. Prior to this, Nathan held senior leadership positions at Travelex, Western Union and Link Group.
WTW appoints Anthony Plotnek to lead the company’s recently combined Private Assets and Capital Management (PACM) team within its Insurance Consulting and Technology (ICT) business. Prior to joining WTW, he held senior level roles as head of capital management projects at Just Group, and Capital Management Actuary at Retirement Advantage / Canada Life.
illimity bank, Italy’s high-tech banking group, adds two new hires. Fabio Bianchini is appointed head of the b-ilty Division, a digital bank specialising in credit and financial services for companies with a turnover between 15 and 200 million euros. Meanwhile, Paolo Piovini will take over as chief lending officer, responsible for creditworthiness assessment.
Marygold & Co appoints Ian Gass as chief product officer. His appointment follows the recent launch of the Marygold & Co mobile fintech app in the US. Gass will oversee the development of the app for the UK market, which is expected to launch in 2024.
Cambridge Trust has expanded its Relationship Banking Team in support of its current and new business clients’ growing needs. Jason Rich, Ellen Soucy, Jerod Colley and Edson Bueno bring, on average, more than 22 years of experience to Cambridge Trust’s business and commercial banking expertise in New England.
Working capital provider Accelerated Payments has appointed Chan Virk as regional director for the Midlands. Virk will be responsible for the continued growth of Accelerated Payments’ in the Midlands, supporting the Debt Advisory, Broker and Private Equity communities.
Pleo, the Danish business spend fintech, has extended its partnership with Yapily, the open banking infrastructure platform, as it expands into Europe and adopts Variable Recurring Payments (VRPs) to automate account top-ups. In September 2022, Pleo partnered with Yapily to create an instant payment experience for finance teams when topping up their Pleo wallet.
Cushon partners with Link Group to ‘provide a unified robust and innovative customer experience to all of Cushon’s clients and members’. The multi-year agreement extends Link Group’s partnership with Cushon to deliver a service solution to its members.
DNB, a Norwegian financial services group, and Proxymity, a digital investor communications platform, have announced a strategic partnership to introduce Proxymity’s Shareholder Insights service in the Norwegian market, on the first day that the Shareholder Rights Directive II comes into effect. In partnering with Proxymity, DNB “underscores its commitment to leveraging advanced technologies to meet evolving regulatory requirements”.
Consumer fintech Salmon has entered into a new partnership with Vans Philippines, enabling customers to purchase Vans Off the Wall shoes using point-of-sale financing. Under this new partnership, Salmon has begun offering its service in select Vans stores in Metro Manila, with all of Vans Philippines’ 33 active stores due to be included in the near future.
Insurtech Qover partners with UK digital bank Monzo to provide tailored travel insurance solution that can be accessed by Monzo Premium account holders in the UK. The program is orchestrated by Qover, utilising its embedded insurance orchestration platform, and underwritten by Zurich Insurance.
Cytora, the digital risk processing platform, and hyperexponential, the pricing decision intelligence company, have partnered to provide commercial insurers with a more streamlined and informed understanding of risk. The move improves underwriting decisions by basing pricing on real-time data and driving profitable growth.
Finastra, a provider of financial software applications and marketplaces, announces that Melton Building Society has chosen its SaaS solution to digitally transform its operations and provide the agility required to quickly implement new services. With Finastra’s Essence, Melton Building Society will automate core processes and unlock new avenues for business growth.
The Bank of Papua New Guinea (BPNG) has partnered with network analytics specialist FNA to monitor intraday liquidity and understand systemic risk. BPNG’s newly formed Payment Oversight, Compliance & Monitoring Office will use FNA’s technology to gain a better understanding of liquidity and risk within its RTGS payment system.
CACEIS, subsidiary of the Crédit Agricole group and Santander, and Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) has completed the sale by RBC and purchase by CACEIS of the European asset servicing activities of RBC Investor Services and its associated Malaysian centre of excellence. This transaction has received all required regulatory and antitrust approvals.
Sidetrade has finalised an agreement to acquire the entire business of CreditPoint Software, a provider of real time B2B credit risk management solutions. Sidetrade is financing the transaction through its cash position, which totaled €36million (€12million in treasury shares) as of 30 June 2023.
IDnow, an identity-proofing platform provider in Europe, has achieved the ISO 27001 certification. With this latest certification, all of the group’s entities that build and operate its solutions are fully certified against this scheme. ISO/IEC 27001 is an internationally recogniSed security standard for certifying an information security management system (ISMS).
Inpay, the international payments firm, has secured an Electronic Money Institution (EMI) licence from the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA), becoming the first Scandinavian fintech to combine EMI, PSP, and TPP. The new licence will enable the company to issue electronic money, facilitate digital payments and money disbursements, among other payment services and is a landmark for the business.
Ebury, the global financial technology firm and FX risk management specialist, has expanded its local collection accounts to Singapore allowing clients to collect Singapore Dollar from anywhere in the world like a local. In addition to Singapore, clients can collect in AUD, BGN, CAD, EUR, HKD, CNY (in Hong Kong), GBP,
NZD, PLN and USD.