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3 Ways Singapore Trailblazing the Cross-Borders Payments Scene

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As digitalization blurs the physical borders between countries, it is estimated that the total global cross-border payment flow can surpass USD156 trillion by 2022.

In the European Union (EU), the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) is a timely solution that enables customers to make seamless cross-border payments between euro countries. But the successful implementation of SEPA could largely be attributed to the fact it is governed by the European Central Bank (ECB), who already is the financial regulator for 19 EU member states. Furthermore, the single Euro currency within the region certainly makes things smoother.

Asia Pacific countries do not have these common denominators. Implementing an effective cross-border payments solution would also mean overcoming challenges such as different currencies and financial regulators. However, despite these obstacles, Singapore is demonstrating leadership in trailblazing the cross-border payments scene.

Making A Leap in Cross-Border Payments Arrangement with Thailand

Singapore’s leadership is evident when the linkage of Singapore’s PayNow and Thailand’s PromptPay real-time retail payment systems was successfully launched in April 2021. It is the first of its kind in the world as it mirrors the convenience of making domestic payments via PayNow or PromptPay in a cross-border transfer.

The linkage would enable customers of the participating banks in both countries to make transfers between the two countries of up to S$1,000 daily, simply through a mobile number. The transfer will be completed in minutes, a stark improvement from the normal cross-border remittances, which usually take an average of 1-2 days.

The linkage also aligns with the work of the G20, an international forum of the world’s major economies, to enhance the speed, access, cost, and transparency of cross-border payments.

Project Ubin and Partior- Paving the Way for Cross-Border Payments Solutions

In a media release by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), Ravi Menon, Managing Director of MAS promises that the pioneering effort is only the beginning and sheds light on MAS’ shared objective with the Bank of Thailand (BOT) to work with other ASEAN countries to establish the linkage across ASEAN, especially because of the rapid growth in the digital economy space.

The Chief Fintech Officer of MAS, Sopnendu Mohanty also announced that India is the next focus, with sights also set on Africa. Furthermore, the Deputy Governor of Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM), Datuk Shaik Abdul Rasheed bin Abdul Ghaffour has also previously revealed that the revolutionary linkage will soon include the DuitNow funds transfer platform in Malaysia.

Project Dunbar: The Next Frontier in Cross-Border Payments Solutions

Singapore is clearly determined to progress further on this journey to improve cross-border payment solutions. Recently, Sopnendu Mohanty revealed an experimental project that is in the works that will enable banks to use blockchain and central bank digital currencies (CBDC). This would then result in faster, cheaper, and safer cross-border payments. A Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT)-based ledger could also help to reduce foreign exchange and settlement costs. The pilot will primarily be focused for the use of commercial banks to make international transfers.

Through this Project Dunbar, MAS is collaborating with the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) and the larger central banking community to design, develop, and test new multiple CBDC models for cross-border settlements. It will initially focus on the development of a common platform for multi-CBDC settlement that can meet the requirements of central banks and financial institutions alike.

Project Ubin and Partior: Paving the Way for Cross-Border Payments Solutions

Project Dunbar is built on the result of Project Ubin, a multi-phase collaboration initiative between MAS and the industry to explore the use of DLT for the clearing of payments and securities. Through Project Ubin, a prototype multi-currency wholesale settlement network was successfully developed. This allowed for the issuance or distribution of various digital currencies on a common network.

In July 2020, MAS reported that upon testing the prototype with over 40 financial and non-financial firms, the potential of the prototype was validated in providing faster and cheaper cross-border payment transactions, foreign currency exchange, and smart contracts for escrow and trade.

Project Ubin also led to the formation of Partior, a technology company that is working with DBS, J.P. Morgan, and Temasek Holdings (Singapore’s state-owned investment company) to develop an open industry platform to accelerate payments, trade, and foreign exchange settlements. Piyush Gupta, the Chief Executive Officer of DBS, believes that the current challenges which include delay due to the need for validations from banks on payment details will be eliminated through the benefits of blockchain solutions and smart contracts technology. Although the platform is initially targeting flows between Singapore-based banks in SGD and USD, there are plans to include other markets and currencies such as the euro and sterling.

Featured image credit: Photo by Aditya Chinchure on Unsplash 

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Source: https://fintechnews.sg/51792/payments/3-ways-singapore-trailblazing-the-cross-borders-payments-scene/

Fintech

Chilean Fintechs Secure Millions; EBANX and Amazon Forge Payments Partnership

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Fintech companies from Chile made headlines this week, taking their rightful place alongside the innovators in neighboring countries like Brazil, Colombia, and Mexico, which have tended to dominate conversations about the surge in financial technology in Latin America in recent years.

Xepelin, a Chilean company that offers a financial services platform designed especially for small businesses, raised $30 million in equity along with another $200 million in debt facilities. The equity financing was led by Kaszek Ventures, a Latin American VC fund, and featured participation from DST Global and a number of angel investors. The company’s debt facility were provided by asset managers and hedge funds based in Latin America as well as the U.S.

Xepelin focuses on enabling small businesses to secure organize their financial data in real time, as well as apply for – and receive – short-term financing easily and quickly. The company says that SMEs can apply for working capital loans “with three clicks” and receive their funding “in a matter of hours.”

With a monthly growth rate of 30%, Xepelin said it has more than 4,000 clients in Mexico and Chile, and has loaned more than $400 million to small businesses in those countries. The company said that the new capital will help it ensure that all small businesses in Latin America will have access to both financial services and financial capital. Xepelin also noted that it is looking to expand beyond the B2B space to provide a broader range of services to small businesses and companies in the region.


Helping employers improve the financial health of workers is the mission of Quansa, another Chilean fintech that raised $3.6 million in new capital this week. Quansa combines financial education with financial management tools to give companies in Chile the ability to offer their employees a more holistic benefits package. Quansa’s platform provides personalized financial guidance, access to flexible salaries, and debt management resources to more than 2,000 workers currently.

The seed funding round was led by Valor Capital Group and featured participation from Pear VC, Norte, Magma Partners, Sequoia Scouts, as well as a number of angel investors.

Quansa co-founder Mafalda Barros pointed to the challenge of debt that many Chilean workers struggle with, and noted that 70% of workers say that they feel as if they have little control over their finances. “It’s just as important to understand how to manage your money as it is to have access to these services,” Barrros said. “We teach users how to organize and manage their bills, use financial tools, start saving and, of course, to spend better.”


Not all big fintech headlines out of Latin America were related to funding and venture capital. EBANX, a payments solution provider based in Brazil, and Amazon have teamed up to enable Amazon Prime Video customers in Peru to subscribe to the service and make payments in local currency rather than in U.S. dollars.

“Localized solutions deeply improve the online purchasing experience for Peruvians and all Latin Americans, helping them to access the best services around the world – in addition to broadening the total addressable market of companies in the LatAm region,” EBANX co-founder and CEO João Del Valle said. “And this two-way street of access is precisely what we work for everyday at EBANX. That is why we are very excited about this collaboration with Amazon Prime Video in Peru.”

Founded in 2012, EBANX is among the leading payment platforms in Latin America. The company offers more than 100 local payment methods and brought access to financial products and services to more than 70 million Latin Americans. Last month, the company secured $430 million in funding from Advent International. This spring, EBANX launched operations in Central America, expanding its total reach to 15 countries. The company has said it plans to offer shares to the public via IPO “in the coming months.”


Here is our look at fintech innovation around the world.

Central and Southern Asia

Latin America and the Caribbean

Asia-Pacific

Sub-Saharan Africa

Central and Eastern Europe


Photo by Alisha Lubben from Pexels

The post Chilean Fintechs Secure Millions; EBANX and Amazon Forge Payments Partnership appeared first on Finovate.

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Source: https://finovate.com/chilean-fintechs-secure-millions-ebanx-and-amazon-forge-payments-partnership/

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Movers and Shakers: Finastra hires new payments lead, Credit Suisse onboards tech chief

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Banking core provider Finastra, Credit Suisse and Automation Anywhere announced new senior executive hires this month. Bank Automation News offers a wrap-up of some recent industry staffing shuffles. Finastra taps Marmur to lead payments division Financial technology and enterprise software provider Finastra has hired Oren Marmur as general manager of payments. Based in Israel, Marmur’s […]
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Source: https://bankautomationnews.com/allposts/corp-bank/movers-and-shakers-finastra-hires-new-payments-lead-credit-suisse-onboards-tech-chief/

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Listen: How the FDIC and Duke University drive bank innovation

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In a strategic partnership to support technological innovation in the banking and financial services sectors, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and Duke University’s Pratt School of Engineering recently announced an agreement to collaborate on artificial intelligence, risk management, quantitative research and cybersecurity at the FDIC and U.S. banks. In this episode of “The Buzz” […]
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Source: https://bankautomationnews.com/allposts/secur-risk/listen-how-the-fdic-and-duke-university-drive-bank-innovation/

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State Street to offer crypto services to private-fund clients

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State Street Corp. is set to offer cryptocurrency reporting, reconciliation and processing services to its private-fund clients in the latest sign that digital assets are gaining acceptance on Wall Street. The firm is partnering with Lukka Inc., a provider of middle- and back-office crypto software, for the fund-administration services, State Street said in a statement […]
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Source: https://bankautomationnews.com/allposts/wealth/state-street-to-offer-crypto-services-to-private-fund-clients/

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