TECHCRUNCH: In 2009, the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) blacklisted an individual named Kursad Zafer Cire. Mr. Cire was believed to have run a network that facilitated the sale of nuclear technologies to countries such as Iran, Libya, and North Korea. He was a known bad actor. (more…)
Philippe Gelis, CEO at KANTOX: Last week, I had the opportunity to present Kantox and my vision of Fintech in front of around 150 bank executives from Northern Europe. After my pitch, we had a Q&A round, and one more time I had proof that bankers are not expecting at all what will happen in the next 10 years. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: It’s no surprise that Vietnam is being talked about as an alternative, amid rising costs and attrition rates in popular offshoring destinations like China and India. The General Statistics Office of Vietnam reports growth of almost 6 percent in GDP during 2014. Tech giants like Samsung, Microsoft, LG and Intel have invested in large operations in Vietnam, and a growing number of technology startups have secured investment. The entrepreneurial spirit on the streets of Ho Chi Minh City is palpable.
E27.CO: Australian electronic funds transfer at point of sale (EFTPOS) provider Tyro Payments announced today that it has opened the country’s first first hub for financial technology startups in Sydney. According to Tyro, the Tyro FinTech Hub will offer co-working desks to FinTech startups and high growth companies, as well as spaces to host accelerators, conferences, hackathons, meetups and seminars.
TECHCRUNCH: We’re approaching the third anniversary of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, an omnibus bill of far-reaching financial reforms that was signed into law by President Barack Obama on April 5, 2012. Containing seven titles, the legislation’s intent was, and is, to create cost-effective access to capital for companies of all sizes. (more…)
FORBES: How a Russian investor Yuri Milner established his “gold-mining machine” (firm DST) and why he believes that the future belongs to Asia. China lifted Milner up from ranked 35 to 20 in the Forbes ranking of the best investors. Investments in Alibaba and smartphone vendor Xiaomi opened Yuri Milner’s way to the Forbes’ top 20 investors. In the past year the entrepreneur preferred China to the US.
DEALSTREETASIA: Asia joined the world’s most funded regions for the fintech industry in 2014, with startups in this space raising total of $797 million, a report said. This growth was triggered mainly by fintech investments in China, and on a global level, fintech startups have raised about $6.8 billion during this period, according to data compiled by Life.SREDA, a venture capital firm headed in Russia.
WIRED UK: The government has announced its intention to apply anti-money laundering regulation to digital currency exchanges in the UK. It is hoped that regulation will not only prevent criminal use of digital currencies, such as Bitcoin, but support innovation. Regulation would be intended to ensure the environment was ready to allow digital currencies to flourish, while at the same time discouraging those who wanted to use digital currencies for illicit reasons.
TECHINASIA: As smartphone usage booms across Asia and web services become more commonplace, private equity firms and venture capitalists are exploring the lucrative potential of the region. There are a number of global VC firms, especially in Silicon Valley that are keeping an eye on startups on the other side of the planet. Below we’ve identified some big-name VCs who have backed South Asian startups.
THE FINANCIAL BRAND: According to BI Intelligence, the consumer payments industry will process about $2.7 trillion of card-based payments in the US in 2015. This explains why there is a massive amount of mobile-centric innovation occurring in the payments space and why competition for the consumer’s wallet is so intense.
TECHINASIA: Last week, the Singapore government issued new laws that will allow drivers to receive payments for carpools. The statute was completed on Monday, March 2, and reported by the Straits Times on Friday. According to the statute, car owners can accept monetary compensation for driving passengers, provided the driver does not accept hails on the street or in a parking lot. In addition, payment cannot exceed the cost of taking the passenger to his or her destination, which must be agreed upon before the ride begins. Drivers are also prohibited from making more than two rides a day.
WIRED: Businesses in the US are on a hiring spree, but jobs that require tech skills sit open—500,000 in all. It’s that gap that the Obama administration hopes to close with its new $100 million TechHire Initiative, announced by the president today. At its core, TechHire aims to convince local governments, businesses, and individuals that a four-year degree is no longer the only way to gain valuable tech skills.
MarketResearch.com: Banking Innovation is a global growth‐sector. There are three types of banking innovations (on top of the regular IT investments done by banks): (1) In‐bank FinTech innovations – also known as FinServ innovations; (2) Neo‐Banks as part of the FinTech community; and, (3) Non‐Banking FinTech companies. Global FinTech investments almost hit the USD 10 billion mark in 2014 (USD 9.9 billion). Banking Reports’ research shows that 2015 is going to be the real point of inflexion: FinTech investments are expected to reach USD 19.7 billion globally. In the next 10 years – following 2015 – FinTech investment growth will be strong but not exponential, bringing circa 20 percent compound annual growth rate to the table. We have found highly significant qualitative and quantitative differences between the five continents examined in this report. While London and New York are jockeying for the global leader’s role, Australian banks are doing an exemplary and outstanding job.
COMPUTER WORLD: The Hong Kong government will be offering financial assistance to technology startups with its plan to set up a HK$50 million corporate venture fund. The amount is earmarked for companies located at the Hong Kong Science and Technology Park (HKSTP) and those that have participated in its incubation programs. (more…)
AEGON, one of the largest financial groups in the world, which owns the Dutch startup Knab (Fidor analogue), has released its new annual report, where it reports the success of the model when specific customer groups are targeted by a particular brand with mono line business and additional services are purchased from the parent company.