Week – 21-28 June 2021
Stay on the weekly beat.
In this weeks Pulse:
- Fundings – from Mollie to Voyager
- Visa acquires Tink for $2.2 billion
- 2021 – a record year for European fintech investment
- Crypto mining crackdown in China – what does it mean for Bitcoin?
- How PCN launched a 4-day workweek in a pandemic – and how it’s going
From Startups to Unicorns
Payment startup Mollie raises US$800m at a $6.5bn valuation
Mollie, one of the fastest-growing payment processors in Europe announced it raised US$800m in a Series C funding, now valuing the company at $6.5bn. The valuation, based on Dealroom data, makes Mollie the third most valuable privately-held European fintech behind Klarna and Checkout.com.
Philippines’ Voyager Innovations Secures US$167 M for PayMaya Expansion Into Financial Services, Digital Banking
Voyager Innovations, the leading technology company in the Philippines, announced a US$167 million funding raise to fast-track financial inclusion in the Philippines through its Fintech arm, PayMaya Philippines. The fundraising marks another milestone for Voyager after having successfully grown PayMaya’s mobile wallet, payments processing, and digital remittance businesses. Voyager is now leveraging this unique ecosystem to expand into digital banking for the next phase of its mission to improve financial inclusion in the Philippines.
In its first funding in 7 years, Lower raises $100M Series A led by Accel.
Lower, an Ohio-based home finance platform, announced it has raised $100 million in a Series A funding round led by Accel. This round is notable for several reasons. First off, it’s a large Series A even by today’s standards. Second, the financing also marks the previously bootstrapped Lower’s first external round of funding in its seven-year history. Finally, lower is also profitable – which is something rare in the startup world!
NFT marketplace startup Rarible closes $14.2 million Series A
NFT marketplace Rarible announced they’d closed a $14.2 million Series A from Venrock Capital, CoinFund and 01 Advisors. The startup allows users to buy and auction off digital art. The startup says it has reached $150 million in sales on the platform since launching 18 months ago.
Visa to buy Swedish fintech Tink for $2.2 billion
Visa Inc (V.N) has agreed to a 1.8 billion euro ($2.2 billion) takeover of European open banking platform Tink months after it ditched a planned acquisition of the startup’s U.S. rival Plaid. Founded in 2012, Sweden-based Tink enables banks and other financial firms to access consumer financial data quickly and securely.
2021 – A record year for European fintech investment
Barely halfway through 2021, Europe has already broken the record for annual investment into fintechs. So far this year, European fintechs have raised €10.4bn, trumping the €9.3bn raised across the whole of 2019 — the previous highest year on record according to Dealroom data.
It’s also a marked recovery from 2020 when, in the midst of Covid-19, European fintechs raised a total of €8.4bn. The fintech sector looked vulnerable at the start of last year, hitting a three year low as governments shut down and investors took stock.
Bitcoin sinks to a two-week low – China intensifies crypto mining crackdown.
According to data from Coin Metrics, the world’s largest digital currency fell as low as $31,760 Monday morning, dropping below $32,000 for the first time since June 8. It was trading at $32,472 at 4:00 p.m. ET, down 8% on the day. Smaller rivals like ether and XRP also fell 12%.
Egypt eyes surge in fintech investment after new laws
New legislation and regulatory changes in Egypt are set to unleash a surge in new fintech investments and change the way the country’s largely unbanked citizens do business.
Fintech innovation in Egypt, the Arab world’s most populous country, has trailed other emerging market powerhouses such as China, India, Kenya and Indonesia, a situation the industry hopes the new legal environment will change.
In summary, MNT taps micro-borrower base for the electronic wallet business – and is Egypt’s first private non-bank company to be licensed by the central bank to operate a digital wallet. MoneyFellows to connect cooperative lending groups and E-payment provider Fawry concludes capital increase to accelerate its strategy in developing mobile services.
Private investors have been reluctant to put money in Egypt in recent years due to an expansion of state ownership in the economy, and it remains to be seen how keen fintech investors will be.
More from PCN
How we launched a 4 day working week during a global pandemic.
After the initial questions, misbeliefs, and curiosities, the first question that typically comes to people’s minds when hearing about PCNs 4 Day Work Week is, why? Why would a company willingly introduce something like this, and what’s the benefit?
Fast forward to our offsite in January 2020, we had each done our research and fact-finding, and the conversation of the 4 Day Week shifted from could we? to why shouldn’t we?
Platform operating model for the AI bank of the future
Technology alone cannot define a successful AI bank; the AI bank of the future also needs an operating model that brings together the right talent, culture, and organizational design.
The need to change a bank’s operating model arises from a combination of external and internal circumstances. Externally, as consumers and businesses increasingly rely on AI technologies in daily life, banks are shifting the foundation of their business models from products to experiences.
In other words, as many traditional banking products become embedded—or even “invisible”—within beyond-the-bank journeys, experiences become the more salient element of a customer’s relationship with the bank. This shift involves a rapid increase in the number of customer interactions, and at the same time, the revenue associated with each interaction is declining.
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