This Week in Fintech: TFT Bi-Weekly News Roundup 29/10

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This Thursday 29 October’s Fintech Times Bi-Weekly News Roundup takes a look at the latest global fintech stories. We hear how Funding Options is teaming up with Cooper Parry, Ossama Soliman is making a move to TrueLayer and Zopa has launched its first ever credit card.

Partnerships and collaborations

Business finance platform Funding Options has hooked up with accountancy firm Cooper Parry to provide financial solutions for scaleups and SMEs. Cooper Parry will utilise Funding Options’ platform to source debt-based products for clients in need of working capital with the aim or ‘removing bureaucracy and delay from securing vital funds’.

The partnership with Funding Options was a no-brainer for us. It gives the CP Futures team the ability to connect companies to debt finance quickly and efficiently through the UK’s leading funding marketplace.

Brompton Bikes and GoCardless

Brompton Bikes and GoCardless

Brompton chooses GoCardless to streamline the payments of its bikes on subscription service

ABAKA, the digital saving and retirement enterprise SaaS solutions provider, has joined forces with Intel in order to innovate and develop an artificial intelligence platform. ABAKA is now a member of the Intel AI Builders programme – an enterprise ecosystem of independent software vendors, system integrators, original equipment manufacturers and enterprise end users.

French SaaS firm Agicap is working with financial API platform Salt Edge to digitalise cash flow management for SMEs. Following the partnership, SMEs can monitor cash flows on all bank accounts, in a single dashboard.

Meanwhile, Asia-focused investment group PAG has chosen Broadridge as a cloud-based portfolio management technology provider. The Broadridge Sentry portfolio management solution will help PAG’s private debt team integrate middle- and back-office operations into a single system.

GoCardless is supporting Brompton, the folding bike company, with its new subscription service. Brompton Bike Hire enables customers to avoid the upfront expense of purchasing a bike outright with monthly payments powered by GoCardless.

Finally, United Arab Bank and Mastercard announce strategic partnership to accelerate payments innovation in the UAE. Mastercard is now the preferred and exclusive partner for credit, debit and commercial cards issued by UAB.

Industry news and announcements

Bahrain FinTech Bay is launching a virtual acceleration programme, ‘Build for Bahrain’. Shortlisted teams will receive incubation at BFB, as well as mentorship by industry experts. The programme is a partnership with the US State Department’s Middle East Partnership Initiative.

Africa Fintech Summit is going virtual this year

Africa Fintech Summit is going virtual this year

Africa Fintech Summit is going virtual this year

Jack Dorsey will deliver the closing keynote at this year’s Africa Fintech Summit. The fifth annual Summit is being held virtually on 9, 10, and 12 November. Dorsey’s keynote will revolve around the concepts of decentralised finance and opportunities it creates for financial inclusion.

Meanwhile, FOODICS is introducing a $100million micro loan fund to support SMEs in Saudi Arabia. The micro loans are Shariah-compliant and focused on helping restaurants expand faster. In order to launch the fund, FOODICS has partnered with SME financing provider Maalem Finance.

Dubai brokerage firm Déjà Vu Real Estate has signed Yegertek to implement a ‘comprehensive digital transformation’. The collaboration will look to develop technologies that leverage data to unlock profitability, and revolutionise the user experience of the real estate sales force.

And, payment solutions provider Checkprint has extended its contract with Metro Bank for cheque services for a further six years. The contract enables Metro Bank to continue to instantly issue chequebooks to all new account holders, within minutes of them entering the store.

New products and services

Zopa unveils new credit card

Zopa unveils new credit card

Zopa has launched its first ever credit card

OpenPayd, the API-led banking-as-a-service provider, has launched an FX-as-a-service product. InstantFX will provide clients with real-time trading, plus the ability to pay out USD via SWIFT, ACH, and Wire. It also offers a range of payment corridors, including access to UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Mexico.

Zopa has unveiled its first credit card in order to ‘help customers stay in control of their money’. The card includes a ‘Safety Net’ feature that lets customers set aside part of their credit limit for unexpected expenses. Zopa already offers savings accounts and personal loans in addition to peer-to-peer investing.

Mastercard and PayPal now offer Instant Transfer in nine European markets. By using Mastercard Send, PayPal customers can now cash out their balances to Mastercard cards in real time. The service is now available in Bulgaria, Bosnia, Germany, Italy, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain and UK following successful launches in the US and Singapore.

Industry movers

Ossama Soliman joins TrueLayer as chief product officer

Ossama Soliman joins TrueLayer as chief product officer

Ossama Soliman joins TrueLayer as chief product officer

Ossama Soliman, the former general manager of business lending at Amazon has joined TrueLayer as its chief product officer. “Getting to help democratise access to finance through TrueLayer’s open banking platform is incredibly exciting,” Soliman says.

AI fintech Axyon AI has appointed Giovanni Beliossi as a business advisor. Beliossi will focus on Axyon AI’s offering for the hedge fund industry, sharing ‘unique insight into the challenges managers are facing today’.

While Temenos has hired Joaquin De Valenzuela Muley to lead its digital banking SaaS product, Infinity. The former Salesforce executive joins Tenemos as senior vice president and business line director. He will also be tasked with building strong customer relationships.

Adam Kelly will become the new managing director for British Business Investments next month, following the retirement of Peter Garnham. Kelly joined the British Business Bank in 2013 as a senior manager in the Investment Programme, which became part of the BBI subsidiary when it launched in 2014.

Communications surveillance provider VoxSmart has made a brace of appointments in order to launch a new Markets division. Andrew Stone joins from pricing and analytics start-up NEX Data. While Lloyd Jensen joins from BGC Partners. The new Markets division will ‘influence and improve’ the customer experience and market fit for VoxSmart’s product suite.

Voxsmarts

Voxsmarts

VoxSmart forms new ‘Markets’ division to strengthen product development

Finally, global financial technology infrastructure platform Nium is expanding into Africa with two new executive appointments. Dana Nino is now senior vice president for global growth, customer success and partnerships, while Clara Wanjiku Odero is vice president, partnerships and growth. The move into Africa is part of Nium’s broader mission to drive business productivity and cost efficiency using fintech.

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