Affirm rides savings account momentum  

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/affirm-rides-savings-account-momentum/

Share Point-of-sale lender Affirm is gaining traction with its newly launched savings product, Chief Capital Officer Geoff Kott told Bank Innovation.  “Americans are saving at a historic rate,” Kott said, adding the direct-to-consumer lender is tapping into the trend with “a natural extension of our [POS] product offering.”  Affirm Savings, which launched in early June, is seeing “north of 30%” …Read More

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Jack Henry, NuData beef up security with behavioral analytics

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/jack-henry-nudata-beef-up-security-with-behavioral-analytics/

Share Core technology provider Jack Henry is upgrading its security measures for banking clients. The Monett, Mo.-based company this week announced it is partnering with NuData Security to provide more robust measures to identify fraudulent online banking users. “We already detect some levels of anomalous traffic and block that,” said Chad Killingsworth, software engineering director …Read More

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KeyBank upgrades relationship banking with human-digital approach

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/keybank-upgrades-relationship-banking-with-human-digital-approach/

Share KeyBank is embracing a human-digital strategy. The Cleveland-based bank, which has $156 billion in assets, is using banker-led consulting sessions, complemented by proprietary algorithms, to connect customers with relevant solutions. “Think of the old banking world where the customer is on one side of the desk and a banker is typing into a mystery …Read More

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BNY Mellon, Microsoft launch data and analytics solution

https://bankinnovation.net/editorial/premium/bny-mellon-microsoft-launch-data-and-analytics-solution/

Share Bank Of New York Mellon launched three new data and analytic products with Microsoft last week to provide data services to investment institutions. The three products, namely, Data Vault, Distribution Analytics and ESG Data Analytics, will be available on Microsoft Azure. The New York-based bank, which has over $468 billion in assets, said that …Read More

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KeyBank, Associated Bank, Brex join BI Build speaker faculty

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/keybank-associated-bank-brex-join-bi-build-speaker-faculty/

Top executives from KeyBank, Associated Bank and Brex are slated to speak at the Bank Innovation Build digital event on Sept. 9-10.

Taking the virtual stage will be Stephen Schroth, head of digital consumer banking and global experience design at KeyBank; Michael Meinolf, Associated Bank’s chief information officer; and Michael Tannenbaum, chief financial officer at Brex. They will discuss changes in banking innovation operations and focus in the age of COVID-19 on Sept. 9, at 11 a.m. EST.

Each industry leader brings a unique perspective backed by industry experience. Schroth has spent more than three years at KeyBank. Prior to that, he spent almost four years at TD Bank as the vice president of strategy and digital customer experience, where he led strategy for TD’s North American online and mobile channels, and spent an additional three years as the head of digital channels at the Royal Bank of Canada. Meinolf has been with Associated Bank for more than five years. Before joining the bank, he spent more than three years as a vice president of technology administration at The Clearing House. Tannenbaum was the first employee at Brex and has been with the startup for three years. He previously spent more than three years at SoFi, most recently as the chief revenue officer.

As consumers have shifted toward digital channels during the coronavirus pandemic, banks have reacted accordingly to accommodate this shift in behavior. Banks have accelerated the development of certain projects while putting others on hold as the pandemic continues to alter everyday life and rattle global markets.

Bank Innovation Build, now in its second year, is designed for innovation teams in financial services and executives overseeing financial technologies and product experiences. As a virtual experience, Bank Innovation Build will be powered by an online event technology that will provide attendees with networking opportunities and AI-based matchmaking for one-on-one meetings with other industry leaders. Additionally, attendees can explore the virtual exhibitor hall and demo sponsor technologies. All sessions will be recorded and attendees can access conference content throughout the year.

Bank Innovation Build speakers include executives from Royal Bank of Canada, Ally, HSBC, City National Bank and more. Sessions highlight open banking and best practices in risk management, executing new investments, as well as a fireside chat featuring Citibank Chief Innovation Officer Vanessa Colella.

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/keybank-associated-bank-brex-join-bi-build-speaker-faculty/

Euromonitor: Consumers don’t trust business to handle data

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/open-bank/euromonitor-consumers-dont-trust-business-to-handle-data/

Share It seems consumers still haven’t come around to trusting business with their digital security. According to Euromonitor International’s Digital Consumer Survey 2020, which came out this week, just under 30% of consumers agree most companies handle sensitive consumer data responsibly. “With more aspects of consumers’ lives unfolding on digital platforms, security concerns have become …Read More

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Vanguard taps blockchain fintech for FX

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/corp-bank/vanguard-taps-blockchain-fintech-for-fx/

Share Vanguard and blockchain provider Symbiont are one step closer to integrating blockchain technology into foreign-exchange (FX) forwards processes across a network of a dozen banks, brokerages and asset managers. After two years of collaborating on a blockchain application to digitize and automate the FX forwards and contract process, the two companies are slated to …Read More

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Alerus, Fiserv launch financial wellness tool

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/alerus-fiserv-launch-financial-wellness-tool/

Share Alerus Financial, a Grand Forks, N.D.-based institution with more than $2.3 billion in assets, is providing customers with comprehensive financial wellness scores through a partnership with Fiserv.  “If a client is going to be able to manage their financial well-being, they need to see their entire picture,” said Jon Hendry, chief information officer at …Read More

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Weekly Wrap: Brand intimacy problems, and Citizens transforms its core

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/weekly-wrap-brand-intimacy-problems-and-citizens-transforms-its-core/

Share This week, MLBM released its 2020 Brand Intimacy Study. Financial services ranked 11th out of 15 industries when it comes to emotionally connecting with customers. Citizens Bank, meanwhile, is transforming its technology core through a data-driven personalization engine. “We’ve created what we call a ‘data intelligence platform’ that pulls together information on our customers, …Read More

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MBLM: Financial services lagging in brand intimacy

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/mblm-financial-services-lagging-in-brand-intimacy/

Share The 2020 Brand Intimacy Study this week ranked financial services 11th in a list of 15 industries when it comes to building an emotional connection with customers. The study was released by MLBM, a consulting firm specializing in brand intimacy. “Before the crisis, financial services brands were showing signs of eroding brand intimacy, appearing …Read More

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https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/mblm-financial-services-lagging-in-brand-intimacy/

Fintech consortium boosts Sacramento banking innovation

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/fintech-consortium-boosts-sacramento-banking-innovation/

Share A recently launched fintech consortium in Greater Sacramento is already generating partnerships between local technology providers and financial institutions. The Fintech Consortium Governance Committee is a cluster of technology companies and financial institutions that promotes collaboration and idea sharing within Sacramento’s financial services ecosystem, according to panelists during a webinar hosted by the Greater …Read More

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https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/fintech-consortium-boosts-sacramento-banking-innovation/

PenFed, Genesis join Ally in home improvement finance race

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/penfed-genesis-join-ally-in-home-improvement-finance-race/

Share Porch.com, an online platform that connects homeowners with contractors, launched Porch Financing Solutions on Monday, following the lead of Ally Financial, which debuted a similar home improvement financing product earlier this month. Porch.com has partnered with FinMkt, a point-of-sale technology provider, for the solution. Porch is reaching consumers by partnering with financial institutions. Unlike …Read More

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https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/penfed-genesis-join-ally-in-home-improvement-finance-race/

Citizens innovates around its legacy core

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/citizens-innovates-around-its-legacy-core/

Share Citizens Bank has accelerated its transformation of the bank’s core system, turning to creative workarounds to respond quickly to changing consumer behaviors amid the pandemic. At the heart of the transformation is the bank’s data-driven personalization engine, which has played an important role in customizing pandemic communications for the bank’s more than 5 million …Read More

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Citi tweaks digital channels to handle COVID-19 volume spike 

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/retail/citi-tweaks-digital-channels-to-handle-covid-19-volume-spike/

Share As consumers are flocking to digital banking channels during the COVID-19 pandemic, banks are rethinking how they handle customer interactions. For Citibank, this has meant tweaking its mobile app to help customers easily self-serve.  “We’ve accelerated a lot of the things that we identified weren’t working or that we wanted to tweak,” said Mike …Read More

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Current to add cash deposit feature 

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/current-to-add-cash-deposit-feature/

Share Current, a New York-based banking platform, plans to add a cash-deposit feature to its banking app by early August, following the likes of Varo Money and Green Dot Unlimited. The challenger bank saw a surge in new users due to the pandemic, adding 200,000 customers in April and May alone.  “This pandemic has made …Read More

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Former Wirecard CEO arrested, scandal prompts calls for reform

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/former-wirecard-ceo-arrested-scandal-prompts-calls-for-reform/

Wirecard AG’s former chief executive officer was detained by Munich prosecutors as the scandal over 1.9 billion euros ($2.1 billion) that went missing from the Germany’s fintech company triggered calls from the government for urgent regulatory reform.

Markus Braun, who resigned last week, turned himself in Monday evening in Munich as part of a probe into the company’s accounting practices, prosecutors said in an emailed statement. At a hearing Tuesday afternoon, he was granted bail of 5 million euros ($5.67 million) — one of the largest amounts ever posted in Germany.

The company is fighting for survival after acknowledging the missing funds probably don’t exist. The payment processor said it’s in discussions with creditors and is considering a full-scale restructuring after pulling its financial results for fiscal 2019 and the first quarter of 2020.

The scandal has become a national embarrassment for Germany and prompted Finance Minister Olaf Scholz to call for urgent reforms of the country’s financial regulation after the nation’s top supervisor BaFin was criticised for not acting on previous allegations of accounting fraud.

“Auditors and regulators don’t seem to have been effective here,” Scholz said Tuesday in comments to Bloomberg that were first reported by the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper. “We need to quickly clarify how we have to change our regulatory requirements in order to be able to monitor complex corporate networks across the board, promptly and quickly.”

Felix Hufeld, head of BaFin, admitted on Monday that the regulator has made some mistakes. “It’s a complete disaster we’re looking at,” he said at a panel discussion. “It’s a shame that something like that happened.”

In less than a week, the fintech company once hyped as the future of German finance has lost most of its market value.

“It’s a brutal development — it could hardly have turned out worse,” Oliver Kipper, a defense lawyer who isn’t involved in the case, said before Braun’s arrest. “You should know what happened to 1.9 billion euros of assets you have listed in your books.”

Munich prosecutors said Braun is suspected of inflating Wirecard’s balance sheet and sales volume by faking income from transactions with so-called third-party acquirers, possibly in cooperation with other perpetrators. That would make the company appear financially strong and more attractive for investors and customers.

Officials at Wirecard and Braun’s attorney weren’t immediately available to comment.

Braun can be released once he posts the bail and must report to a police station once a week.

Prosecutors said that they are likely to add additional suspects to the probe.

Braun’s arrest will come as a further shock to Wirecard employees. Interim Chief Executive Officer James Freis told employees on Monday to expect a major restructuring as it tries to salvage the company, people familiar with the situation said.

In his first message to the company as interim chief, Freis said in a pre-recorded video that management is looking at all options, including selling assets, said the people, asking not to be named as the situation is private.

Wirecard is working with investment bank Houlihan Lokey on a financing strategy, while also considering a broad restructuring to keep its business operations going, the company said on Monday.

Wirecard had been championed by German politicians as their own tech giant. It became a favorite of investors, breaking into Germany’s elite DAX index of the largest companies in 2018, at the expense of the then 148-year-old Commerzbank AG.

The Wirecard saga has been under review for months, but prosecutors’ focus is likely to have changed with last week’s developments.

Initially, authorities looked at media reports that caused the stock to tumble, with Wirecard a potential victim of market manipulation. Then, earlier this month, they began an investigation targeting the management board, over how an internal review by KPMG was communicated to the markets.

The arrest of Braun shows, however, that the probes have come full circle, with the former victims becoming the suspects.

“Given the numbers, it’s certainly the biggest accounting scandal in Germany,” said Katie Schroeder, a criminal defense lawyer in Frankfurt. “You’d have to think pretty hard to find a case of such scope.”

(Updates with Finance Minister Scholz’s comments in fourth paragraph)

Karin Matussek (Bloomberg)

Sarah Syed (Bloomberg)

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/former-wirecard-ceo-arrested-scandal-prompts-calls-for-reform/

How banks use the four types of consumer data to drive growth

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/resources/sponsored/how-banks-use-the-four-types-of-consumer-data-to-drive-growth/

[Excerpt from The Finance Industry’s Guide to Marketing Data]

The financial services market is changing. A recent PwC survey revealed that 71% of U.S. banking executives consider non-traditional market entrants to be a threat, indicating that competition from FinTech and companies like Amazon and Apple is putting pressure on legacy financial brands. Furthermore, evolving consumer expectations for convenience and personalization are creating a need for a more customer-centric approach within the financial industry. In fact, in a recent survey by Yes Marketing, 52% of financial services consumers ranked relevant content as the most important marketing factor that influences their decision to switch to a new provider.

Financial brands that master the application and analysis of consumer data to elevate customer experiences and improve marketing ROI will gain an edge over their competitors. Understanding how to collect, analyze and use marketing data is key for financial marketers to adapt and modernize for the digital consumer.

The four types of consumer data
Consumer data is typically divided into four categories determined by how the data is collected and where it comes from. To achieve growth in today’s marketplace, savvy brands are adopting data-centric marketing strategies that leverage zero-, first-, second-, and third-party data to improve performance, reduce ineffective marketing spend, and increase long-term loyalty by creating relevant, powerful communications.

Continue reading The Finance Industry’s Guide to Marketing Data to learn:

  • How finance brands use the 4 types of data to drive growth & improve marketing efficiency
  • Strategies to find the best prospects & build personalized campaigns
  • Real-world examples from financial brands like Ally, HSBC, Wells Fargo and more!

<<Read the Guide>>

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/resources/sponsored/how-banks-use-the-four-types-of-consumer-data-to-drive-growth/

Checkout.com’s $150M Series B latest big bet on B2B payments 

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/checkout-coms-150m-series-b-latest-big-bet-on-b2b-payments/

Share Business-to-business payments companies continue to score venture capital despite the market uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Checkout.com today announced a $150 million Series B that tripled the company’s value to $5.5 billion.  “The way money moves into and out of businesses is changing rapidly,” said Guillaume Pousaz, CEO and founder of Checkout.com, in …Read More

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Ally, BlueVine, Citizens Bank of Edmond join BI Build speaker faculty

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/lending/ally-bluevine-citizens-bank-of-edmond-join-bi-build-speaker-faculty/

Top executives from Ally Financial, BlueVine and Citizens Bank of Edmond are slated to speak at Bank Innovation Build, the digital event that takes place Sep. 9-10.

Taking the virtual stage will be Sathish Muthukrishnan, chief information, data and digital officer at Ally Financial; Herman Man, BlueVine’s chief product officer; and Josh Pape, chief banking officer at Citizens Bank of Edmond. They will discuss case studies on getting the digital transformation back on track in a live panel session on Wednesday, Sept. 9, at 3 p.m. EST.

Each tech heavyweight brings a unique perspective backed by decades of industry experience. Sathish, who leads up Ally’s tech, data and digital teams with a focus on cybersecurity and infrastructure, previously held leadership roles at American Express and Honeywell Aerospace. Pape oversees commercial, SMB, retail, mortgage and community engagement lines of business at the Edmond, Okla.-based bank, and brings his career of finance experience spanning community banks to Bank of America. Meanwhile, BlueVine’s Man, responsible for product vision, strategy, design and execution, spent two decades building software at technology startups in the Silicon Valley before joining the SMB lender.

The coronavirus pandemic and subsequent economic downturn prompted many financial institutions to rework their roadmaps. As priorities shifted, the industry saw product development accelerate in some cases, and become sidelined in others. As consumer behaviors continue to evolve amid the pandemic, it is crucial for innovation teams to stay agile to bring new ideas and ways of banking to life.

Bank Innovation Build, now in its second year, is designed for innovation teams within financial services and executives overseeing financial technologies and product experiences. As a virtual experience, Bank Innovation Build will be powered by an online event technology, providing networking opportunities and AI-based matchmaking for one-on-one meetings with other industry leaders. Additionally, attendees can explore the virtual exhibitor hall and demo sponsor technologies. All sessions will be recorded and attendees can access conference content throughout the year.

Bank Innovation Build speakers include executives from Royal Bank of Canada, KeyBank, HSBC, City National Bank and more. Sessions highlight open banking and best practices in risk management, changes in banking innovation operations, and a fireside chat featuring Citibank’s chief innovation officer, Vanessa Colella.

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/lending/ally-bluevine-citizens-bank-of-edmond-join-bi-build-speaker-faculty/

Wirecard fights for survival as billions may not exist

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/wirecard-fights-for-survival-as-billions-may-not-exist/

Wirecard AG was left fighting for survival after acknowledging that 1.9 billion euros ($2.1 billion) that it had reported as assets probably don’t exist, deepening an accounting scandal that has rattled Germany’s financial industry.

The payments processor said it’s in discussions with creditors and considering a full-scale restructuring after pulling its financial results for fiscal 2019 and the first quarter of 2020. Previous descriptions of its business with third parties, which process transactions on Wirecard’s behalf, were “not correct.”

Even before the early Monday statement, the unfolding scandal had seen Wirecard’s shares and bonds collapse, its chief executive depart, and left the company renegotiating debt terms with its lenders. In less than a week, the fintech once hyped as the future of German finance has lost almost 90% of its market value, with the shares slumping for a third trading day on Monday.

“It’s a complete disaster we’re looking at,” said Felix Hufeld, head of BaFin, Germany’s top financial regulator, at a panel discussion Monday. “It’s a shame that something like that happened.”

Wirecard said it was in “constructive discussions” with its lending banks, including the extension of lines coming due at the end of June. It is working with investment bank Houlihan Lokey on a sustainable financing strategy. Also under consideration are cost reductions, a restructuring, and disposal or termination of business units and product segments, according to the statement.

“There is a prevailing likelihood that the bank trust account balances in the amount of 1.9 billion euros do not exist,” Wirecard said. The firm had repeatedly delayed announcing its financial statements, and last week warned that loans of as much as 2 billion euros could be terminated if its audited annual report wasn’t published by June 19.

Cracks are already appearing among Wirecard’s lenders. Bank of China Ltd. may write off most of the 80 million euros ($90 million) it’s owed and not extend its credit line, according to people familiar with the situation.

Moody’s Investors Service decided on Monday to withdraw Wirecard’s credit ratings because it “believes it has insufficient or otherwise inadequate information to support the maintenance of the ratings.” It had already cut the ratings six levels on Friday, putting it one step from the lowest tier of junk.

Read more on how Wirecard became an embarrassment for Germany

Wirecard fell as much as 50% and traded 38% lower at 12:35 p.m. in Frankfurt. The stock has lost 85% since Wednesday, the day before it revealed that the funds were missing.

Wirecard’s lenders are demanding more clarity from the company in return for the extension of almost $2 billion in financing after it breached terms on the loan, people familiar with the matter said earlier. At least 15 commercial lenders, including Commerzbank AG and ABN Amro, are in hectic negotiations about the steps to take, they said.

The missing cash “could trigger an event of default and allow creditors to withdraw lines of credit,” said Justin Tang, head of Asian research at United First Partners in Singapore.

Wirecard has an outstanding revolving credit facility of 1.75 billion euros, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. About 90% of the RCF has been drawn by the company, according to people familiar with the matter and a list detailing the facility’s participation that was seen by Bloomberg:

LendersNominal exposure

(in million euros)

ABN Amro, Commerzbank, ING, LBBW200
Barclays, Credit Agricole, DZ Bank, Lloyds120
Bank of China, Citi, Deutsche Bank, MUFG80
Raiffeisen Niederösterreich60
Agricultural Bank of China55
Raiffeisen Oberösterreich45

It’s unclear how the latest admissions will affect discussions with the banks. Most are leaning toward an extension of the repayment obligation in order to better assess the potential impact of a default on their balance sheets, one of the people said. However, a prolonged extension could be seen as delaying an insolvency, which is illegal under German law.

The scandal has prompted the resignation of Markus Braun after almost two decades as CEO. He was replaced on an interim basis by James Freis. Braun is unwinding a large portion of the shares he owns in the company, a stake he financed by borrowing against the stock’s value, Bloomberg has reported.

Read more on how Braun has to unwind pledged shares

The deepening mystery over the lost money centered on two Philippine lenders, after Wirecard said a couple of unnamed Asian banks had been unable to find accounts with the cash.

Both the Bank of the Philippine Islands and BDO Unibank Inc. said Wirecard wasn’t a client and they hadn’t seen the money. None of the missing cash entered the Philippine financial system, according to the nation’s central bank, which is conducting its own investigation.

A document purporting to show a link between Wirecard and BPI was “bogus” and may be part of an attempted fraud, the bank’s President Cezar Consing said Friday. BDO Unibank CEO Nestor Tan said it was a matter of “document fraud which was subsequently clarified by the bank as spurious.”

Wirecard is continuing to investigate the matter and can’t rule out potential effects on the financial accounts of previous years, it said in Monday’s statement.

(Updated with ninth paragraph, new table.)

Chanyaporn Chanjaroen (Bloomberg)

With assistance from Edwin Chan, Charlie Zhu, Jun Luo and Zheng Li.

https://bankinnovation.net/allposts/biz-lines/payments/wirecard-fights-for-survival-as-billions-may-not-exist/