News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

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1. UK – FinTech  

Altfi reports: 


“Funding and fintechs go hand in hand—particularly with the rise of mega-rounds—and, according to Tech Nation, fintech funding soared last quarter. 

New data from Tech Nation shows that, in the last quarter, VC investment in UK fintechs hit $4.9bn—more than the total raised by UK fintechs throughout the whole of 2020 ($4.57bn). 

It’s clear to see that after the initial Covid-19 and Brexit-related dip in funding (and subsequent down rounds), fintechs are back on top. 

This year so far, fintechs in the UK have snagged $11.4bn in VC funding, with around half of that ($5bn) coming from US investors.” 

 

2. UK – FinTech 

 

Finextra reports: 


“With VC investment in the UK's financial technology sector soaring, Tech Nation has unveiled the 30 scaleups selected to participate in the fourth cohort of its fintech programme. 

The six-month government-backed programme is designed to support fintech and insurtech companies in the UK. Participants get access to networking events with key stakeholders, peer-to-peer meetups, and insights sessions delivered by established fintech entrepreneurs, investors and partners.

The 30 firms span 11 fintech subsectors, from payments, to proptech to SME financing. London dominates, home to 18 of the participants, while 30% have at least one female founder. The majority of the companies are at seed stage with others at pre-seed or series A, and the group has already collectively raised £128 million and employs more than 700 people.” 

 

3. UK - FinTech 


Altfi reports: 


“Microsoft is making its financial services-specific cloud offering generally available from next month, with Virgin Money UK on board as an early user. 

First unveiled in February, Microsoft Cloud for Financial Services promises a foundation of privacy, security, and regulatory compliance.

In a blog, corporate vice president, worldwide financial services, Bill Borden, says the offering integrates cloud services across Microsoft Azure, Microsoft 365, Microsoft Dynamics 365, and Microsoft Power Platform, underpinned by an industry data model.

Borden claims the industry-specific cloud will improve the experience of retail banking employees and customers, helping with unified customer profiles, onboarding, customer engagement and collaboration.” 

 

 

4. US – FinTech 

 

Crowdfundinsider reports: 


“Earlier today it was reported that GoCardless may be raising $200 in a funding round led by JP Morgan. Last year, GoCardless raised growth capital at a valuation of just under $1 billion and expectations are for the Fintech to be firmly in unicorn territory following this round. 

Crowdfund Insider received a comment from Ivan Zhiznevskiy, CEO at 3S money, an online banking service that targets cross border businesses. Zhiznevskiy threw some shade at the report stating, “Unicorn status’ is just another tired buzzword in Fintech. GoCardless’ recent move to seek £200 million from JPMorgan to reach this level is simply another playing piece in the race of power among Fintechs.” 

 

5. International – FinTech 

Crowdfundinsider reports: 

“This coming November, pan-European rules for investment crowdfunding will become actionable by platforms and issuers. Under the new rules, issuers may raise capital from across all European Union member states. Firms may raise up to €5 million. While these are EU rules, local nuances still exist and may enable certain jurisdictions to encourage platforms and issuers to base offerings within a specific member state. 

In a release received by CI today, CreditOnline and the law office of EXE.legal believe that Lithuania is poised to emerge as a jurisdiction of preference for investment crowdfunding. 

The two entities have signed a strategic partnership agreement on providing integrated solutions to crowdfunding service providers (CFSPs) – a one-stop-shop of legal and technology services. 

Dr. Paulius Astromskis from EXE.legal, says the favourable Lithuanian business environment and the growing reputation of Lithuania as the EU’s Fintech centre
could help the country attract new crowdfunding market players who would develop their business from Lithuania.”