In a time of rapid digital acceleration, there is no doubt that technology and innovation are crucial in both supporting as well as transforming financial markets.
As we look ahead into the remainder of the decade, several trends are worth noting. One of the greatest enablers has unquestionably been cloud-computing spearheaded by AWS, meaningfully lowering the cost and barriers for startups. In a recent report, Nasdaq underscored the potential of cloud, federated learning and homomorphic encryption in helping overcome barriers to data sharing and analysis. This can serve important causes such as fighting financial crime and improving market integrity. Similarly, it noted the acceleration of the software-as-a-service model (SaaS) in the cloud. This can help make client onboarding and product delivery both faster and cheaper.
In its annual “Big Ideas” publication, Ark Invest reminds us that some of these changes are periodic. The architecture of data centers is due for an upgrade every so often. The last great migration here was from RISC processors in the 90s to Intel’s low cost, PC derived x86 solution. Looking ahead, ARM processors will leverage the scale of the mobile ecosystem to disrupt Intel. Other changes are unprecedented, as evidenced by blockchain based infrastructure solutions.
Last week, we expressed concern on the US’s fall from Bloomberg’s ranking of top 10 most innovative countries. Technological developments are at the forefront of innovation. The US has produced roughly half of the world’s fintech unicorns, and the USD remains the main global currency, but nothing lasts forever. In other words, there’s no “fin” without “tech”....
MoneyLion, America’s leading digital financial platform, to become publicly traded via merger with Fusion Acquisition Corp. (NYSE: FUSE) - Congrats to Dee Choubey and the entire MoneyLion team. This marks a major milestone in their journey and represents a big step forward in their mission to re-wire the consumer financial experience and empower millions of hard working Americans to take control of their finances. We’ve been proud to be part of the journey since 2014, and we can’t wait for what’s to come! Read more
Kasasa partners with NYDIG to provide bitcoin wallet capabilities to community financial institutions - Bitcoin’s rapid and widespread adoption has created an opportunity for community banks and credit unions to compete for market share. According to a recent consumer survey from NYDIG, more than 22% of U.S. adults over the age of 18 own Bitcoin today. Through this collaboration, Kasasa financial institutions will have the ability to offer Bitcoin products, powered by NYDIG. Read more
BottlePay lets UK users send Bitcoin to anyone on social media - Congratulations to portfolio company BottlePay, which launched in the UK yesterday, making it easier to send Bitcoin Lightning payments to people using their social media handles. The app works as a basic Bitcoin wallet, letting you store Bitcoin both on-chain and on the Lightning Network. You can also trade between GBP and Bitcoin in the app. But the app’s focus is on making it frictionless to send Bitcoin to other people via social media. Read more
There’s No “Fin” Without “Tech”
Nasdaq decodes: Tech trends 2021 - The events of 2020 demonstrate the importance of maintaining resiliency, capacity, performance, immediacy and security across our businesses. It is against this backdrop of unprecedented change and opportunity that we identify the four technology trends that we believe will have the biggest impact on our industry and outlook for the year ahead: custom chips, edge cloud, data sharing and SaaS in the cloud. Read more
ARK Invest: Big ideas report 2021 - Today, we are witnessing an acceleration in new technological breakthroughs. To enlighten investors on the impact of these breakthroughs and the opportunities they should create, ARK began publishing Big Ideas in 2017. This annual research report seeks to highlight the latest developments in innovation and offers some of our most provocative research conclusions for the coming year. Read more
BharatPe - India based digital payments and working capital platform for merchants raised $108m in Series D funding led by Coatue. Read more
Capitalize - New York based retirement savings platform raised $12.5m in Series A funding led by Canapi Ventures. Read more
Celo - San Francisco based mobile-focused blockchain payments startup raised $20m in new funding from a16z, Greenfield One and Electric Capital. Read more
Coterie - Cincinnati based small business insurance startup raised $11.5m in Series A-1 funding led by Intact Ventures. Read more
Fair - Houston based multilingual neobank and financial services platform raised $20m in new funding led by undisclosed investors. Read more
Human Interest - San Francisco based provider of 401(k) programs to SMBs raised $55m in Series C funding led by Glynn Capital. Read more
Ledn - Toronto based digital asset savings and credit platform raised $2.7m in new funding led by White Star’s Digital Asset Fund. Read more
Libeo - France based B2B payments platform raised €20m in Series A funding from DST Global, Serena, LocalGlobe and Breega. Read more
Marble - New York based digital wallet and loyalty platform for insurance raised $2.5m in Seed funding from IA Capital Group, MS&AD Ventures, Reciprocal Ventures, Fintech Ventures Fund, The Takoma Group and HU Investments. Read more
Mesh Payments - New York based B2B payments platform raised $13m in new funding led by TLV Partners. Read more
Northmill - Sweden based challenger bank raised $30m in new funding led by M2 Asset Management. Read more
NYMBUS - Miami based provider of banking technology solutions raised $53m in Series C funding led by Insight Partners. Read more
SoLo Funds - Los Angeles based marketplace for short-term, personal loans, raised $10m in Series A funding led by ACME Capital. Read more
Stir - San Francisco based developer of a financial management platform for writers and producers raised an undisclosed amount of Series A funding led by a16z. Read more
Symend - Canada based digital engagement platform for resolving past due bills raised $43m in additional Series B funding led by Inovia Capital. Read more
Tickr - U.K. based investing app in the ESG space raised £2.5 million in Seed funding led by Ada Ventures. Read more
TomoCredit - San Francisco based startup with a credit card aimed at first-time borrowers raised $7m in Seed funding led by KB Investment. Read more
Trade Ledger - London based lending-as-a-service platform raised £13.5m in Series A funding led by Point72 Ventures. Read more
UpEquity - Austin based mortgage platform raised $25m in Series A funding led by Next Coast Ventures. Read more
FinTech Collective Newsletter
Curated News with Context
Delivered every Saturday, the weekly newsletter, produced by our team, provides a tightly edited rundown of global fintech news, along with a bit of our original analysis.