Lanistar raised £15 million, Coconut beat its crowfunding target by 352%, and Tide has a new partnership

The former head of a key subsidiary of Wirecard, who remains unidentified, voluntarily gave himself up for the proceedings and took individual responsibility. He was the chief executive officer of Dubai-based Cardsystems Middle East.

His lawyer said on Thursday, that has admitted wrongdoing to prosecutors for his role in a multi-billion-euros fraud. It is the first known confession of wrongdoing in the collapse of one of Germany’s biggest companies.

Þ Read more here.

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Followed by the news:

EUROPE

Lanistar raised £15 million, Coconut beat its crowfunding target by 352%, and Tide has a new partnership.

Lanistar, a personal financial management startup founded in 2019, has raised £15 million to support its forthcoming commercial launch in Winter 2020. The investment, from Milaya Capital, gives the VC a 10% stake in the company at a valuation of £150 million. Lanistar plans to use the fresh capital to grow its operational and customer support teams, and scale towards its product launch.

$1.6 billion challenger bank Monzo relaunches paid premium accounts with eye on profitability.

Coconut, the banking platform designed for SMEs and self-employed people, has closed its second crowdfunding round just shy of £2.5m. The Crowdcube campaign was initially launched in the hopes of raising £700,000 but the campaign quickly went into overfunding, raising a total of £2.47m, beating its target by 352 per cent, from over 3,000 investors.

United Kingdom cryptocurrency banking platform Ziglu launched an insurance program on July 15 for digital assets held with the service. Under the new program, each customer’s cryptocurrency holdings are insured against cybercrime to a value of £50,000 ($63,000). Customer assets are held in segregated accounts, with the vast majority stored in offline cold wallets. These additional measures decrease the risk of theft through hacking or other means.

Rizq is a UK-based Islamic digital challenger bank and it is preparing for its launch this summer. The challenger bank aims to solve mainstream banking issues for Muslims in the West, which is in line with their values and lifestyle. Peter Trebelev is the Head of Growth at Rizq, and he provided Everly.eu with some of his ideas in an exclusive interview: “The market is so saturated, that only niche propositions have the potential to survive.”

Global payments platform Currencycloud announced today it has secured an e-money license from the Dutch Central Bank (De Nederlandsche Bank), allowing it to continue operating across the EU. The licence is one of only seven issued to non-banks by the Dutch Central Bank and will allow Currencycloud to store money and operate e-wallets on behalf of its clients, as well as process payments and collections.

In response to increased investor demand London-based bank challenger 3s.money briefly reopened its earlier funding round announced in April and increasing total amount raised to £1.5 million. The achieved result compares favorably to the initial target of £1 million set in February before the challenges of global pandemic emerged. Both legs of the campaign were led by TMT Investments PLC – an early investor in Bolt.

Global Processing Services (GPS) announced that it has partnered with London-based fintech, sync., to power the payments processing function of sync.’s debit cards. sync.’s smart payments service will support multi-currency current accounts that allow for seamless currency conversions, instant user-to-user transfers, national and international bank transfers, and real-time tracking. Users will be able to open accounts in the currency of their choice, transferring and spending funds in more than 30 currencies, and aggregating all of their external financial bank accounts in one app.

BUX launched its zero-commission investing app to French users, making it the first neobroker of its kind in the market. This will be the third country launch for BUX in 2020, following a successful launch in Germany and Austria earlier in the year. This brings BUX’s overall user base to more than 300,000 users, making BUX the largest neobroker in Europe.

Tide, the UK’s leading business banking platform has partnered with API platform, Gravitee.io, to take Tide’s integrated service to the next level. APIs are integral to providing a seamless and secure experience for Tide members, and Gravitee.io will be key to Tide building on this level of connectivity and integration. Furthermore, Tide announced that it has joined the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Fair Business Banking’s Banker for Net Zero initiative. The Net Zero initiative aims to look for solutions for building a net-zero carbon world in a bid to facilitate net-zero transition across the UK economy.

Savings and investing app Moneybox announced that it has secured £30 million in Series C funding earlier this year from existing investors including Eight Roads, and new investors Breega and CNP. Moneybox also reveals it now has £1bn in assets under administration and announces plans to bring customers closer to its growth journey through an upcoming crowdfund.

Revolut has launched open banking for its more than one million users in France through a partnership with Truelayer. The product follows the rollouts of open banking by Revolut in the UK and Ireland. Users in France can now connect their Crédit Mutuel, Caisse d'Epargne, Banque Populaire, Crédit Agricole, Société Générale, BNP Paribas and Hello Bank! bank accounts to Revolut, allowing them to view all their balances and transactions in a single app.

Treezor becomes a privileged partner of the Fintech Express programme announced by Mastercard in June 2020. The goal of both partners? Accelerate the launch of European fintechs and then their international development, by facilitating their integration with innovative players in the world of payment such as Treezor – a Mastercard Principal Member.

Barclays bank is introducing a hybrid digital wealth management service for current account customers with a minimum of £5000 to invest. The new service, called Barclays Plan & Invest and developed in collaboration with Scalable Capital, will create a personalized investment plan that’s tailored to a customer’s goals, with Barclays then managing the investments on their behalf.

USA

Robinhood, the mobile trading and investing platform, announced that it has secured $320 million in additional funding. Combined with the $280 million the company raised earlier this year as part of its Series F round, Robinhood now has raised more than $1.5 billion in capital and sports a valuation of $8.6 billion.

MoneyLion teams up with MetaBank and Mastercard to launch RoarMoney, giving consumers easy access to advanced mobile banking solutions such as early paycheck delivery, Mastercard Tap & Go contactless payments technology, and seamless integration with MoneyLion's zero-percent interest cash advances, credit building loans and powerful investing tools.

Radius Bank, a forward-thinking digital bank, announced its deployment of Goalkeeper, an automated goals-based savings solution integrated within Radius Bank’s online and mobile banking channels. Goalkeeper is launched in partnership with leading fintech solution provider Harvest Savings & Wealth Technologies.

Bond announced it has raised $32 million led by Coatue’s VC fund. Other investors include Mastercard, Canaan and Goldman Sachs—the bank that provides the financial backend for the Apple Card. Individual backers include John Mack, former Chairman and CEO of Morgan Stanley, and angel investor Sarah Friar.

MANTL announced an extension of its series A funding to $19 million, as a result of a $11 million raise. New and existing investors, including Point72 Ventures and Clocktower Technology Ventures, participated in the Series A extension. The new funds will be used to accelerate product development and team growth, particularly across engineering, product, and sales.

San Francisco based Hummingbird, provider of a modern platform for anti-money laundering (AML) compliance technology, has announced that the company has raised $8.2 million in its Series A funding round. The investment round was led by Flourish Ventures with support from notable Stripe alumni Lachy Groom and Jon Zieger, and continued support from seed investors including Designer Fund, Hombrew, and TTV Capital, for total funding to date of $11.8M.

Virtual card payment startup Privacy.com has raised $10.2 million in a Series A fundraise, the company announced Wednesday. The round was led by Teamworthy Ventures, with participation from Tusk Venture Partners, Index Ventures, Quiet Capital, Exor Seeds and Rainfall Ventures.

Goldman Sachs is building an AI-powered digital assistant and checking account for its Marcus consumer bank. Here's how it's shaping up.

Revolut plans to bring its cryptocurrency services to the US as it debuts a partnership with Paxos. Experts say Fintech companies have a lot to gain by tapping the crypto market. Paxos will provide the framework for Revolut in its aim to support digital assets on its platform. As a result of the partnership, Revolut will make use of Paxos' existing licenses and reach to provide services to clients in New York and other US states.

LATAM:

J.P. Morgan invested in the Brazilian fintech FitBank. It is its first strategic investment made by the bank in the payments industry in Latin America, according to a report by Valor Econômico. The funds will be used to improve product portfolio and on the international expansion of the fintech. The value of the deal was not disclosed.

AUSTRALIA

Australian fintech Avenue is preparing to launch a dedicated bank for small business after securing former Commonwealth Bank executive George Confos as CEO and launching a Series B funding round. Avenue is the brainchild of entrepreneurs, Colin Porter and Dale Hurley, who founded CreditorWatch, a credit reporting bureau that disrupted a $4 billion duopoly held by Equifax and Illion.

In an email to customers, budgeting and transaction app Wildcard announced it is closing its doors on 14 August. Wildcard cited the economic impact of COVID-19 and being unable to secure funding to continue its operations as reasons for closure.

ASIA

Bengaluru-based neobank Walrus on Wednesday announced it has raised an undisclosed amount of funding for its platform, which is focused on providing banking solutions for teens and young adults. The pre-seed funding round was led by Better Capital, an early backer of neobanks in India, which has invested in Open, Khatabook, Jupiter, Yelo, and Slice.

Nuclei, a leading provider of digital and lifestyle banking solutions, has entered into a partnership with SafeGold, India’s largest digital gold platform provider. Through this collaboration, Nuclei can now seamlessly connect Digital Gold solution by SafeGold to the mobile app of any bank. This will enable the customers to purchase and sell 24K physical gold online, for as low as INR 1, from their own banking platform.

MIDDLE EAST

Iraq-based International Network for Cards and Digital Payment Services (INC Iraq) and a Lebanese fintech startup NymCard that is digitizing how payments cards are issued, delivered, and used, in collaboration with Visa have launched the first digital-only (prepaid) payment card ‘Neo‘ in Iraq to serve the underbanked Iraqi population, the two companies announced in a joint-statement to MENAbytes.

NOTE: This article was featured in my weekly newsletter on August 4, 2020. Do you want to be the first to read the next weekly overview? Sign up for my Weekly Digital Banking Newsletter here.
 
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