News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

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After a period of indisposition... Here is today's FinTech, SME and AltFi news briefing.

 1.UK - FinTech

AltFi reports: 

“Listed alternative lender Funding Circle is performing better than expected, according to a trading update from the company, with the SME platform expecting to turn a profit of at least £15m in the second half of 2020. 

Funding Circle predicted that it would break even back in November 2020 and, in its trading update published this morning it confirmed this.  

The fintech is still on track to reach profitability, with Funding Circle predicting its AEBITDA (Adjusted Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization) will be no lower than £15m for the second half of 2020. 

According to the fintech, the higher-than-expected AEBITDA is as a result of strong trading, cost-cutting exercises and its market value performing as predicted. 

In the UK, Funding Circle saw a 91 per cent jump in the number of loan originations in the second half of 2020 compared to the same period the year before, a jump that can be attributed to the number of CBILS applications the lender is processed.” 


2. International – FinTech 

Finextra reports: 

“General Motors, Goldman Sachs and Mastercard have agreed a multi-year relationship for co-branded rewards-based credit cards. 

Goldman Sachs beat out competition from Barclays late last year to buy GM's credit card business in a deal worth around $2.5 billion.

Mastercard will continue to act as the network of choice when Goldman starts acting as issuing bank for the cards from later this year.” 


3. International – FinTech 


SME-focused neo bank Tide is plotting international expansion with a planned launch in India in the first quarter of 2021, according to AltFi.   

“India is the first overseas market selected by Tide due to its “vast SME population, and the entrepreneurial spirit,” says Oliver Prill (pictured), Tide's CEO.   

“As an aspiring global business financial platform operating in the largest SME market is a must...we are confident that Tide can adapt to make business banking better for Indian SMEs,” he said.  

“Our move into India is another step in our strategy and builds on Tide’s established position. Despite the COVID-19 crisis, Tide continues to grow very strongly as we have always remained fully open for business and our digital-only experience is becoming ever more compelling for our customers."  

“With almost 300,000 members, processing £10bn in transactions, we now have over 5% of the UK business banking market and our service is adding new functionality all the time. The UK market will remain a key focus for Tide, with a dedicated team building Tide India."  

After its initial launch Tide plans a gradual roll-out of its digital banking service later in the year to India’s 63m SMEs.” 


4. International – FinTech 

Crowdfundinsider reports: 

“Europe-based online SME lender October says there’s probably no need to describe or go over how our lives have been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. October claims that they had to “become economists, epidemiologists, and politicians” in order to cope with the challenges created by the pandemic. 

As noted by October, the first lockdown period, due to COVID, was quite predictable but also  “completely shocking.” The digital lending platform confirmed that initially, there weren’t any state-guaranteed loans nor furlough schemes to support small businesses during these unprecedented times. October acknowledged that “the worst” could have happened due to the socioeconomic challenges created by the Coronavirus crisis.” 


5. International – FinTech 


Konsentus has acquired Open Banking Europe, the operator of a centralised PSD2 directory supporting bank data sharing initiatives, from EBA Clearing subsidiary Preta, according to Finextra. 

“Launched in June 2017 with the backing of 40 banks and tech firms, Open Banking Europe was formed to address regulatory concerns about the interoperability of bank data sharing initiatives under PSD2.

The PSD2 Directory meets the need of third-party providers (TPPs) and account-servicing payment service providers (ASPSPs) for a repository storing all key information on bank APIs in one single place. It provides information on banks and brands, developer portals, end points and other information about the APIs, such as security and standardisation options and is currently accessed by over 500 financial institution across Europe.”