The Fintech community unites for Ukraine
We want to start off by highlighting the crisis in Ukraine. The conflict in Ukraine has rapidly escalated. On Thursday, President Putin ordered attacks on multiple Ukrainian cities and bases, attacking by land and by sea. At least 368,000 people have fled Ukraine into Poland and other neighboring countries in the wake of the invasion. It’s a tragedy all around- and PCN hopes for the safety of all those affected. Our in-house taskforce has compiled a list of organizations and charities and will be collecting funds to donate. Reach out to [email protected] The Fintech ciomunity is coming together- Ali Niknam, founder & CEO at bunq, has offered to help Ukrainian refugees with safety & shelter in Bulgaria and Georgia, and will bring them to the Netherlands on the HSM visa, UK fintech Wise announced restrictions on money transfers to Russia, Revolut waived transfer fees for money sent to Ukrainian bank accounts. Dutch tech entrepreneurs Joris Beckers from Picnic, Robert Vis from MessageBird and Ali Niknam have setp a joint foundation called People for People foundation. Binance donates $10million.
Roman Abramovich sells Chelsea
For football fans, Roman Abramovich’s decision to sell Chelsea shocked and simultaneously did not shock. In the midst of the conflict in Ukraine and sanctions against Russia, Abramovitch, who is Russian, has confirmed that he will donate the net proceeds of his sale to victims of the conflict in Ukraine. It is speculated to be in excess of 1 billion pounds. Chelsea could be expecting a take over from the US.
The Caribbean and African startup scene gets a power-up
The Caribbean and African financial ecosystem has been notorious for its tech startup obstacles. The record of sustaining and scaling a startup is complex- the entire continent has only had five startups- Jumia dubbed the Amazon of Africa, Flutterwave, Wave, Opay, and Andela. This number is in contrast with the 50 unicorns in the EU, 100 in China, 200 in the US. African startups rarely survive beyond Series B. In an effort to overcome these challenges, Microsoft launched Founders Hub in Africa with a goal to accelerate the growth of 10 thousand African startups and power the startup ecosystem over the next five years. European fintechs are partnering with Caribbean companies as well- Amsterdam based scaleup Fraudio partners with WiPay, popular in Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Guyana, Saint Lucia, Barbados, and Grenada.