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220

JD reportedly in talks to invest in Tokopedia, may propel its valuation past US$1B

By Anisa Menur A. Maulani for e27.com

With the investment in Tokopedia, JD will compete directly with Alibaba, which had purchased controlling stake in Lazada last year (more…)

Deals, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia

May 2, 2017

110

WeChat maker Tencent opens AI lab in US

By Steven Millward for Tech in Asia

Tencent, China’s US$300 billion tech giant and maker of the popular messaging app WeChat, today confirmed it has opened a lab in Seattle devoted to AI tech. The social media and gaming company also confirmed it has poached Dong Yu, a former principal researcher at Microsoft Research, to head its AI lab. (more…)

Accelerators/Incubators/Labs, AI / Machine Learning / Big Data, Hotnews, InspirAsia

May 2, 2017

147

ItzCash partners with Prabhu Money for Indo-Nepal remittances

ItzCash, India’s largest digital payments company and the leading player in domestic remittances, has further ventured into cross-border remittances through its collaboration with Prabhu Money Transfer India, a leading remittance company in Nepal. (more…)

Cashless, Global trends, InspirAsia, Remittances

May 1, 2017

115

Japan’s answer to Y Combinator just graduated its next 3 companies

By Peter Rothenberg for Tech in Asia

Code Republic graduated its second batch of three startups last night. They say ,“threes a crowd,” and the crowd definitely showed up Friday. (more…)

Accelerators/Incubators/Labs, Deals, Global trends, InspirAsia

May 1, 2017

270

Chinese Internet Giant Tencent is Developing a Blockchain Platform Called ‘TrustSQL’

By Laster Coleman for CCN

Tencent Holdings Limited, a Chinese investment holding company whose subsidiaries provide media, entertainment, payment systems, the Internet and mobile phone value-added services in China, is developing in its own blockchain platform. (more…)

Banks, eWallets, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 28, 2017

206

TransferWise opens Asian hub in Singapore

We’re excited to announce that we’re launching TransferWise’s Asia-Pacific hub in Singapore. (more…)

Fintech news, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia, Remittances

April 28, 2017

196

India: Paytm plans to invest $1.5b in financial services in next 3 years

By Deal Street Asia

Leading Indian digital payments firm Paytm plans to invest Rs10,000 crore ($1.5 billion) over the next three years to boost its banking and financial services business, said a Press Trust of India report. (more…)

eWallets, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 28, 2017

221

168

ATB Financial introduces robot branch workers

The march of the robots continues, as Canada’s ATB Financial hires dancing humanoids to work in some of its Calgary branches. (more…)

Banks, Bots, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 27, 2017

183

TransferWise moves into Asia Pacific with opening of regional HQ in Singapore

By Jon Russel for Techcrunch

TransferWise, the billion-dollar valued startup that reduces the cost of cross-border payments, has taken a big step to globalizing its service after it opened an Asia Pacific office in Singapore. (more…)

Global trends, InspirAsia, p2p-payments, Remittances

April 27, 2017

217

Alibaba To Launch Credit Services In Brazil

Chinese eCommerce company Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. has reportedly made plans to open up credit services to the Brazil community. On its website, people in the South American country will be able to finance purchases. (more…)

Fintech news, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 27, 2017

289

Robinhood stock-trading app confirms $110M raise at $1.3B valuation

By Josh Constine for Techcrunch

Zero-fee stock-trading app Robinhood has joined the unicorn club. (more…)

Financial Markets / Trading, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia, Wealth management

April 27, 2017

Video: ATMs in Singapore get personal with live video support

Ideally, your relationship with your savings bank of choice would comprise mostly of withdrawals, deposits, fund transfers and bill payments, all of which can be done at ATMs, if not online. Sometimes, however, you may require more support than a machine can dispense. (more…)

Banks, Global trends, InspirAsia

April 27, 2017

192

DBS and OCBC push QR codes for mobile payments

Singaporean banks DBS and OCBC are to introduce QR code-based payments at offline stores in a joint project with national payments processor Nets. (more…)

Banks, Deals, Fintech news, Hotnews, InspirAsia, Payment processors/providers/gateways

April 26, 2017

163

SeedPlus raises over $18m for its first seed-stage fund

By Michael Tegos for tech in Asia

Seed-stage startup investor SeedPlus has raised over US$18 million for its first fund, it announced today. This was the targeted amount but was oversubscribed, partner Michael Smith Jr. tells Tech in Asia. (more…)

Deals, Fintech news, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 25, 2017

197

SME Lending Activity: China Spikes, US Banks Reboot

By PYMNTS

Small business lending activity across the globe is in flux. China saw a whopping 17 percent increase in small business lending in Q1, while U.S. banks are rebooting their efforts to capture SMEs from their alternative rivals. The U.K. and Canada, meanwhile, see their small businesses struggling to find financing. We break down the latest on SME lending in these key markets. (more…)

Fintech news, Global trends, InspirAsia, p2p/online lending

April 24, 2017

197

Myanmar fintech company ONGO receives backing from National Bank of Canada; aims to boost country’s cashless transactions

The National Bank of Canada (NBC) has acquired a 22 per cent stake in Myanmar-based mobile payment platform ONGO. No details of the deal were disclosed. (more…)

Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia, Myanmar

April 24, 2017

173

Barclays Bank goes in search of the next Paypal at African accelerator

Barclays Bank says it wants to find the next Paypal after selecting the second cohort of 10 companies to participate in its African accelerator programme. (more…)

Accelerators/Incubators/Labs, Banks, Fintech news, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 24, 2017

211

Blockchain startup Factom raises $8m

Factom, Inc., a blockchain as-a-service (BaaS) technology company has closed their Series A funding at $8,029,796 USD following the launch of its mortgage product, Factom Harmony. (more…)

Blockchain, Deals, Global trends, InspirAsia

April 20, 2017

206

Mizuho enters digital wallet joint venture with Metaps

By Mizuho

Mizuho Financial Group, Inc. (President & Group CEO: Yasuhiro Sato), Mizuho Bank, Ltd. (President & CEO: Koji Fujiwara), Metaps Inc. (CEO: Katsuaki Sato), and WiL LLC (CEO: Gen Isayama) signed an agreement for capital participation and business cooperation for the purpose of providing a new settlement service using FinTech. (more…)

Banks, Deals, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 20, 2017

158

Paytm in talks to raise up to US$2B from SoftBank; looking to buy FreeCharge from Snapdeal

By Sainul Abudheen K for e27

With this all-cash deal, the Indian m-commerce and mobile payments company’s valuation will go up to US$9 billion (more…)

Fintech news, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 20, 2017

137

Nomura sets up Indian fintech programme; creates $92 million startup investment fund

Japanese investment bank Nomura has set up a fintech programme in India, inviting entrepreneurs to join it at a Mumbai base to build new tools for capital markets. (more…)

Fintech news, Government activities, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 20, 2017

176

UOB, KrisFlyer launch savings account that rewards with air miles

ByYasmine Yahya for Straights Times,

SINGAPORE – United Overseas Bank and KrisFlyer have tied up to launch a savings account with debit card that rewards account holders with air miles when they save or spend.  (more…)

Banks, Fintech news, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 19, 2017

152

Japanese Government Unveils Evaluation Process for Blockchain Platforms

By Samburaj Das for CCN.la
In a month where bitcoin gains prominence in Japan’s mainstream after the cryptocurrency saw recognition as a legal method of payment, the Japanese government has revealed a method to evaluate blockchain platforms that are widely expected to transform a number of industries. (more…)

Government activities, InspirAsia, Marketing Report, Payment processors/providers/gateways

April 19, 2017

198

Lazada’s payment platform helloPay merges with Alibaba’s Ant Financial, rebranded as Alipay

By Sainul Abudheen K  for e27

Ant Financial, the mobile and online payment platform owned by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, has merged with helloPay Group, which runs the helloPay payment platform on online shopping and selling platform Lazada. (more…)

Deals, Fintech news, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 19, 2017

143

Procter & Gamble to spend $100m for Singapore innovation center

By Judith Balea for Tech in Asia

Procter & Gamble today announced it would invest US$100 million over the next five years in a digital innovation center in Singapore, its first outside of the US. The project is being done in partnership with the Singapore Economic Development Board. (more…)

Accelerators/Incubators/Labs, Fintech news, Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia

April 18, 2017

210

5 fintech startups to look out for at TIA Singapore 2017

By Jing Weng for Tech in Asia

With the country’s move towards becoming a Smart Nation and a global fintech hub, Singapore has become an increasingly attractive destination as fintech startups’ “preferred gateway” into Asia. (more…)

Deals, Fintech news, Global trends, InspirAsia

April 18, 2017

131

Ant Financial partners with Emtek to expand into Indonesia

By Sheila Yu for TechNode

Ant Financial, the financial affiliate of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, announced on Wednesday a strategic partnership with Indonesia’s second largest media firm Elang Mahkota Teknologi (Emtek), in its latest efforts to expand its presence in overseas mobile payment market, local media is reporting (in Chinese). (more…)

Global trends, Hotnews, InspirAsia, Payment processors/providers/gateways, Payment systems

April 18, 2017

177

Cambodia’s Fintech Industry Set to Thrive

By FintechNews Singapore

ambodia’s fintech ecosystem is more nascent than other markets in Southeast Asia and lagging behind the likes of Thailand and the Philippines. Yet, this landscape is quickly changing as engaged institutional partners are set to add to the pace of growth for fintech. (more…)

Fintech news, Global trends, InspirAsia

April 18, 2017

318

Robo-advisor startup StashAway gets in-principle approval from MAS to manage investment portfolios

By Yon Heong Tung for e27

It received an in-principle approval for its Capital Market Services License for Retail Fund Management from the Monetary Authority of Singapore

(more…)

AI / Machine Learning / Big Data, Deals, Financial Markets / Trading, Hotnews, InspirAsia, Wealth management

April 17, 2017