Tag Archives: financial technology

fintech fever spreads

FinTech Fever Spreads Across Globe; Government-Sponsored Investments Surge

FinTech Fever is spreading across the globe, as government-sponsored and regional private equity investments in financial technology startups and fast-growing initiatives is becoming the cool kid place-to-be.

MarketsMuse fintech curators profile a crisp selection of this week’s latest stories out of London, Abu Dhabi, Jakarta, India and Russia..

Abu Dhabi Financial Services Regulatory Authority Bets More on FinTech

The Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) of Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) has formed a new partnership with GlassQube Business Centre Services (GQC) today to further enhance the Financial Technology (“FinTech”) eco-system in Abu Dhabi. This agreement provides a framework for collaboration, co-operation and consultation between the FSRA and GQC focusing on technology development and innovation in financial services. It enables both parties to share knowledge, exchange expertise and join efforts on initiatives that will support the development of the FinTech ecosystem in Abu Dhabi and the wider region. To continue this story, click here

Barclays looking at India as a FinTech innovation hub

Ram Gopal barclays fintech
Ram Gopal

British lender Barclays is keen on being a research and development engine for financial services industry and is making significant investments in this space, according to Barclays India Chief Operating Officer Ram Gopal. Barclays launched the Rise programme here in June. This is its sixth site globally, following London, Manchester, New York, Cape Town and Tel Aviv hubs. (Reuters)

“Globally, there has been some disruption in financial services in recent times… as a response the industry is investing in innovation,” Gopal told PTI here without disclosing the quantum of investment in this.

“Barclays is serious about being a research and development engine for financial services, and is investing in this space,” he added.

Speaking about India as a hub for fintech innovation for the bank, he said Barclays has over 29,000 people employed directly or through its partners, and a third of the group’s executive committee are Indians. “There is a buzz in India,” he said. To continue reading, please click here

“Fintech fever and the focus on financial technology startups is perhaps the most active sector across the private placement industry,” according to Amram Migdal, a case researcher for Harvard University and an advisor to PPM Group Plc, a professional service firm specializing in private placement memorandum document preparation. Added Migdal, “The value propositions, whether via more innovative and more cost-effective payment processing applications, to cyber security-centric distributed ledger applications powered by blockchain technology is no longer the domain of Silicon Valley, this is a global opportunity for savvy start-ups and for fintech-flavored merchant banks including the likes of boutiques such as SenaHill Parnters.”

Russia hosts largest blockchain, FinTech hackathon backed by Life-SREDA VC

The WhiteMoney project, a system of payments between legal entities based on the distributed blockchain network, emerged as a winner in InspiRussia hackathon – touted as the largest fintech event in the country. InspiRussia is a continuation of InspirAsia established by Life.SREDA VC, a Singapore-based fintech-focussed venture capital fund. The event held at the Innopolis University was also backed by Tatfondbank, Sberbank (Sberbank Tech), Microsoft and QIWI. The fintech-focussed event featured developments in sectors such as online debt transactions, payment processing technologies, blockchain and distributed ledger initiatives.
Read the entire story from  DealStreetAsia via this link

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Indonesia Presses Forward with FinTech

The central bank will launch a financial technology (fintech) office next month, one that would be designated to facilitate fintech players to build networks and innovate. The financial office will oversee the ‘regulatory sandbox’, a space where startups can test their services before launching them for consumers. The sandbox concept has been adopted in many countries to foster the booming fintech industry.

“Next month we will launch a fintech office. BI will establish a special task force that will coordinate with other fintech offices,” Bank Indonesia (BI) deputy governor Ronald Waas said in Semarang on Saturday.

A sandbox is used by business players to test innovative products or business models. It is a tool for regulators to facilitate innovation and to test policies slated to be issued.

Earlier, BI and the Finance Services Authority (OJK) unveiled plans to issue rules by the end of 2017 to regulate fintech players’ activities so they could operate safely as the burgeoning industry has facilitated an estimated Rp 40 trillion (US$3.04 billion) in transactions over the past two years.

The plan comes as fintech startups involved in payment services have begun to mushroom in Indonesia, offering e-wallets, online payment services and interbank transactions free of charge.

The International Financial Stability Board divided fintech into four categories according to innovation type, namely payments, clearing and settlement; deposits, loans and capital raising, investment and risk management and market provisioning. (ags)

To continue courtesy of the Jakarta Post, please click here

HSBC Fixing To Build London FinTech Hub; Wanted: 50,000 sq ft office space in Hipster ‘Hood

HSBC Holdings Plc is seeking office space in technology-focused London neighborhoods including Shoreditch to bolster its fintech capabilities, according to two people with knowledge of the move.

Europe’s largest bank hired real estate broker CBRE Group Inc. to find 50,000 square feet (4,600 square meters) of space, almost the same size as an American football field, in areas including Old Street and Shoreditch, the people said. The neighborhoods are home to a cluster of startups and a nexus of hipster culture. The office will be focused on digital growth at the bank, the people said.

HSBC would join other firms that already operate technology-focused offshoots in east London neighborhoods, such as Barclays Plc’s so-called fintech accelerator in Whitechapel. While the bank in February decided to keep its headquarters in London rather than move to Hong Kong, it’s expanding out of its 45-floor skyscraper in Canary Wharf. HSBC plans to move 1,000 retail bank workers to Birmingham, Britain’s second-biggest city, to cut costs and separate its U.K. consumer operations from the investment bank. To continue reading the Bloomberg LP story, click here


japan fintech sector fever

Land of Rising Sun Embraces FinTech Sector; Japan’s Biggest Banks Open Wallets

The FinTech Sector is red hot now in Japan as Land of Rising Sun Banks now looking to pour hundreds of millions of dollars into fintech start-ups after the abolition of a law that prevented them from owning more than 5 per cent of a technology company.

(FT) 25 September The changes are part of a national effort to push into the fintech sector and pursue investments in financial technology startups, highlighting fears in Tokyo that Silicon Valley could decimate Japan’s banking sector as it did the country’s mobile phone industry.

“Japanese institutions are concerned that a Google Bank or Facebook Bank will conquer Japan,” said Naoyuki Iwashita, head of the FinTech Centre at the Bank of Japan.

It means that Japan could become a big new source of funding for start-ups, especially in Asia, that are experimenting with technologies such as blockchain or artificial intelligence.

Yasuhiro Sato, chief executive of Mizuho, told a conference in Tokyo last week that Japanese banks had been constrained by regulators wanting to preserve old, but tried-and-tested, IT systems.

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Yasuhiro Sato fintech
Yasuhiro Sato (photo courtesy of WSJ)

“I think [regulators], especially the Japanese Financial Services Agency, are now changing their thoughts on that,” he told the FinSum conference, organised by the FSA and Nikkei, owner of the Financial Times.

The change in the law means banks can ignore a 5 per cent limit on stakes in non-financial companies if their purpose is to apply information technology to finance.

The FSA is considering a further legal change that would make it easier for fintech companies to engage in regulated financial activities. “In order to obtain more technological advances from outside participants,” said Mr Sato. “That’s the reason why the banking law will now quite likely be changing.”

Mizuho established a presence in Silicon Valley three years ago and this year added an innovation-focused office in New York. Mr Sato said the rule changes would accelerate that. “We have created a specific team, which is the innovation product team, to make significant investment in venture companies. We are sending many many persons to the US.”

Rakuten, the Japanese ecommerce group, has launched a $100m fund to invest in fintech companies and SBI Holdings, a financial group, raised a ¥30bn ($299m) fintech venture fund earlier this year.

Other global banks have opened outposts in California. BBVA, the Spanish bank, is one of the most aggressive, acquiring Simple, an Oregon-based digital lender in 2014, and investing in Prosper, the San Francisco-based peer-to-peer platform. It also set up a venture capital company, Propel Ventures, to pursue investments in other start-ups. SenaHill is a leading merchant bank boutique specializing in fintech initiatives and focused on fast growth companies that are producing revenue and/or startups that have at least one year of business operating metrics.

To continue reading the story Land of Rising Sun Embraces FinTech Sector from FT.com, please click here


What’s Next? A Fintech ETF!

Just when you were about to ask “What’s the next type of exchange-traded fund that nobody else has come up with?, PureFunds has launched a fintech ETF!

If you’re not familiar with the phrase ‘fintech’, you’re likely not qualified to put assets into this latest exchange-traded fund that specializes in one of the hottest trends-financial technology companies.

Caveat: According to 4 Pinocchio star winner Donald Trump, “Many people are saying..” that “fintech” is a phrase associated with start-up companies focused on delivering innovative software applications used to streamline financial industry centric services. The fact is that ‘fintech’ is a term that is applied to the full gamut of companies that specialize in financial industry technology solutions, as evidenced by the criteria for constituents within PureFunds latest ETF product, Solcative Fintech ETF (FINQ).

FINQ allows investors to invest in this fast-growing segment of the industry without having to select individual companies. The rules- based index approach allows us to capture exposure to companies at the forefront of innovation in the financial industry.”

But don’t just take our word for it, below is the press release that just crossed the tape..

SUMMIT, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–ETF Managers Group in partnership with PureFunds today debuted their newest fund, the PureFunds Solactive FinTech ETF (FINQ).

“FINQ allows investors to invest in this fast-growing segment of the industry without having to select individual companies. The rules- based index approach allows us to capture exposure to companies at the forefront of innovation in the financial industry.”

Trading on the NASDAQ, the fintech ETF “FINQ” invests in global companies disrupting the multi-trillion dollar financial industry by offering technology-based solutions designed to revolutionize how financial industry firms interact with their customers and run their businesses.

The fund’s holdings include technology services companies that principally derive revenue from the sale of financial-related information, financial data analysis services, financial services software tools or platforms or web-based financial services. Each company in the fund and its corresponding index – 31 in total – has a minimum market cap of $200 million.

“Financial technology is a rapidly growing subsector of the overall financial services industry, and our fintech ETF FINQ seeks to tap into the potential investment opportunity created by these disruptive, forward- thinking companies,” Andrew Chanin, CEO of PureFunds, said. “FINQ allows investors to invest in this fast-growing segment of the industry without having to select individual companies. The rules- based index approach allows us to capture exposure to companies at the forefront of innovation in the financial industry.”

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Sam Masucci founder and CEO of ETF Managers Group said, “The idea behind PureFunds ETFs is to make available – in a single diversified investment – unique areas within markets that have been greatly enhanced by technology. Technology allows businesses to offer new innovative services that can positively affect a consumer’s experience.”

FINQ will cost 68 basis points* and will be equal weighted. It joins PureFunds’ suite of products, BIGD, GAMR, HACK, IFLY, IPAY, SILJ and IMED, which also begins trading today on the NASDAQ.

* A basis point is one hundredth of a percent

About PureFunds

As an innovator of ETF concepts, PureFunds® strives to provide the market with easy access to in-demand industries through pure-play ETFs. We are a New York City-based research and business management firm, serving as the Manager and/or Sponsor to the suite of PureFunds ETFs. We aim to provide investors with tactical ETFs that may offer attractive investment opportunities in sectors that traditionally have been difficult to invest in. With vast experience in global equity investing and ETF trading, PureFunds has a refreshing and alternative insight into the growing world of ETFs. We have constructed our distinct suite of products in an attempt to meet the needs of investors and traders alike.

About ETF Managers Group

ETF Managers Group, LLC is a leading Exchange Traded Funds (ETF) private label services company. ETF Managers Group offers a full range of ETF product services to the asset management community including commodity pool ETPs as well as both active and passive ETF funds. The services provided include product operations, regulatory, financial and compliance management. ETF Managers Group offers active marketing and dedicated wholesale services for all ETF product types and index construction.