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Cryptocurrency Ban Overturned in India; TurnKey Lender Teams Up with Sambat

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The ruling is subject to appeal. But for now, advocates for cryptocurrency trading in India have won the day: the Supreme Court of India has overturned a ban on cryptocurrencies that was issued by the Reserve Bank of India in 2018.

Specifically, the Reserve Bank forbade Indian banks from working with cryptocurrency exchanges out of concerns ranging from “consumer protection” to “market integrity.” And while India’s participation in the worldwide cryptocurrency market is modest (less than 5% when the ban was instituted), the reaction to the ruling was strong, with a number of cryptocurrency exchanges challenging the Reserve Bank in court. This week, the court sided with the exchanges, observing that no bank regulated by the Reserve Bank had been negatively affected by cryptocurrency trading before the ban, and that a complete ban was thus a disproportionate response.

That said, the ban is not yet a settled matter. The RBI plans to file a review petition with the Supreme Court, again citing systemic risk concerns for the country’s banking system should trading in cryptocurrencies be permitted. As of now, however, cryptocurrency exchanges and platforms in the country are free to operate, legal experts say.


FinovateAsia alum TurnKey Lender will help leading Cambodian financial services institution Sambat improve its loan application processing courtesy of a newly-announced partnership. Sambat, which serves both retail customers as well as micro, small, and medium-sized businesses, will use TurnKey Lender’s Unified Lending Solution to accelerate loan decisioning, increase portfolio profitability, and boost customer lifetime value.

TurnKey Lender CEO Dmitry Voronenko praised Sambat as one of Cambodia’s “early adopters of the fully digital approach to banking.” Managing Director for Sambat Harvey Poh called the deployment a “major milestone” and “a testament to our commitment to deliver digital financial services to our customers.”

Founded in 2014, TurnKey Lender has a U.S. headquarters in Austin, Texas, and maintains offices in Singapore; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and the Philippines. The company was recognized by Frost & Sullivan’s Asia-Pacific Best Practices Awards at the beginning of the year, taking home top honors in the Singapore Fintech Industry New Product Innovation category.


Here is our weekly look at fintech around the world.

Latin America and the Carribean

  • Brazilian challenger bank Nubank launches its Nu credit card in Mexico.
  • Chilean venture capital fund Magma Partners closes its $50 million fund, the largest ever raised by the firm.
  • Peruvian fintech Ayllu announces project to map out of all the fintech startups in the country.

Asia-Pacific

  • Turnkey Lender forges partnership with leading Cambodian financial institution, Sambat Finance.
  • Huobi Thailand offers baht-to-crypto currency trading.
  • Mastercard to play leading role in Series B investment for Indonesian fintech Digiasia.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Cointelegraph takes a deep dive into the emerging fintech economies of Kenya, Ethiopia, and Ghana.
  • A new payment license requirement may complicate life for Nigerian fintechs.
  • FLASH International, based in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, announces an initiative to fund fintech startups in the country.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Wirecard partners with Estonia-based Xolo to serve the gig economy.
  • Finovate’s sister publication, Fintech Futures, profiles Polish digital banking provider and Finovate alum Efigence.
  • Polish asset manager Skarbiec TFI teams up with fintech solution provider NeoXam to enhance its portfolio management.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • The UAE’s National Bank of Fujairah to leverage the RippleNet network to provide real-time, cross-border fund transfers to India.
  • Dubai International Financial Center announces a tripling of the size of its Fintech Hive.
  • Monoco’s Privatam, which offers structured investment products, goes live in Dubai.

Central and Southern Asia

  • Indian SME lender SMEcorner raises $30 million in Series B funding.
  • Supreme Court of India overturns Central Bank’s ban on cryptocurrency trading.
  • Leap Financial, a fintech platform that specializes in providing financing to Indian students studying abroad, secures $5.5 million in round led by Sequoia India.

Top image designed by Freepik

Source: https://finovate.com/cryptocurrency-ban-overturned-in-india-turnkey-lender-teams-up-with-sambat/

Fintech

Money 20/20: Employee demand rises for instant payments

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Growing employee demand for being paid instantly rather than biweekly ― led by today’s gig economy ― is soon expected to spill over into more traditional employers’ payroll systems. That was the consensus among a panel of payments and research executives speaking about the opportunities for instant payments at the Money 20/20 conference in Las […]

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Source: https://bankautomationnews.com/allposts/payments/money-20-20-employee-demand-rises-for-instant-payments/

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OurCrowd Raises $25 Million to Democratize Access to VC Funds

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Venture investing platform OurCrowd announced today it landed $25 million in funding. The convertible equity investment comes from SoftBank Vision Fund 2, a subsidiary of Softbank Group that specializes in growth capital and social impact investments.

Since it launched in 2013, OurCrowd’s platform has helped 140,000 accredited investors from more than 195 countries invest in over 280 companies and 30 funds. OurCrowd will use today’s round to build its investor base and more quickly identify high-potential, tech-enabled private companies.

“We are excited to be working with SoftBank Investment Advisers, one of the world’s largest technology-focused investors,” said CEO Jon Medved. “As a strategic investor with a global reach and a network of market-leading technology companies, they will be a pivotal partner in helping OurCrowd realize our vision of democratizing access to venture capital.”

Today’s deal also involves a strategic partnership between OurCrowd and SoftBank Investment Advisers (SBIA). Softbank will consider investment opportunities via OurCrowd’s VC platform and the two will work together to evaluate market trends.

“Softbank has been investing ahead of major technology trends for over 40 years and we believe there is huge, embedded potential in the private markets ecosystem,” said Head of SBIA Operations in Israel Yossi Cohen. “In OurCrowd, we have an investment partner with the networks and pedigree to help promising Israeli startups to potentially emerge as international tech champions.”

2021 has been a good year of growth for OurCrowd. The Israel-based company saw new registered subscribers increase from 25,000 last year to 75,000 so far this year– a 300% boost. This uplift is fueled by OurCrowd’s ability to curate a diverse portfolio of startups that are poised for both growth and success. More than 50 companies in OurCrowd’s portfolio have made profitable exits, including Lemonade, Beyond Meat, Kenna, Argus, and Wave.


Photo by Maryna Bohucharska on Unsplash

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Source: https://finovate.com/ourcrowd-raises-25-million-to-democratize-access-to-vc-funds/

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Mastercard Launches Touch Card to Support Visually Impaired Consumers

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Mastercard introduced its latest innovation to help ensure that visually impaired and partially sighted consumers can use its spending and credit solutions as readily as any other cardholder. The company’s Touch Card, announced this week, enables the visually impaired to easily determine whether the Mastercard they are holding is a credit, debit, or prepaid card thanks to a few simple design elements to the physical card itself.

At a time when payment cards are becoming sleeker, eschewing the boldly embossed letters and numbers that have distinguished these cards for decades, the new Touch Card features a new design that, while not bucking the trend toward flatter, thiner cards, provides the kind of tactile cues that visually impaired consumers can use to select and use the right card. With a series of notches on the side of the card – a round notch for credit cards; a broad, square-shaped notch for debit cards; and a triangular notch for prepaid cards – Mastercard’s new Touch Card is another example of what Mastercard Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Raja Rajamannar called innovation “driven by the impulse to include.”

“The Touch Card will provide a greater sense of security, inclusivity, and independence to the 2.2 billion people around the world with visual impairments,” Rajamannar said. “For the visually impaired, identifying their payment cards is a real struggle. This tactile solution allows consumers to correctly orient the card and know which payment card they are using.”

The new cards have been endorsed by The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) in the U.K. and by VISIONS/Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired in the U.S. Co-designed by augmented identity specialist IDEMIA, Mastercard’s Touch Card works with bot point-of-scale terminals and ATMs, meaning that the new solution can be readily deployed at scale.

“With one in seven people experiencing some form of disability,” Rajamannar said, “designing these products with accessibility in mind gives them equal opportunity to benefit from the ease and security of a digital world. No one should be left behind.”

It is worth mentioning that the Touch Card is only one of Mastercard’s initiatives to empower those with visual impairments. The company includes its signature melody, which signifies that card transactions have been completed successfully at the checkout counter, among these efforts.


Photo by Marina Leonova from Pexels

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
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Source: https://finovate.com/mastercard-launches-touch-card-to-support-visually-impaired-consumers/

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Fintech

Mastercard Launches Touch Card to Support Visually Impaired Consumers

Published

on

Mastercard introduced its latest innovation to help ensure that visually impaired and partially sighted consumers can use its spending and credit solutions as readily as any other cardholder. The company’s Touch Card, announced this week, enables the visually impaired to easily determine whether the Mastercard they are holding is a credit, debit, or prepaid card thanks to a few simple design elements to the physical card itself.

At a time when payment cards are becoming sleeker, eschewing the boldly embossed letters and numbers that have distinguished these cards for decades, the new Touch Card features a new design that, while not bucking the trend toward flatter, thiner cards, provides the kind of tactile cues that visually impaired consumers can use to select and use the right card. With a series of notches on the side of the card – a round notch for credit cards; a broad, square-shaped notch for debit cards; and a triangular notch for prepaid cards – Mastercard’s new Touch Card is another example of what Mastercard Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Raja Rajamannar called innovation “driven by the impulse to include.”

“The Touch Card will provide a greater sense of security, inclusivity, and independence to the 2.2 billion people around the world with visual impairments,” Rajamannar said. “For the visually impaired, identifying their payment cards is a real struggle. This tactile solution allows consumers to correctly orient the card and know which payment card they are using.”

The new cards have been endorsed by The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) in the U.K. and by VISIONS/Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired in the U.S. Co-designed by augmented identity specialist IDEMIA, Mastercard’s Touch Card works with bot point-of-scale terminals and ATMs, meaning that the new solution can be readily deployed at scale.

“With one in seven people experiencing some form of disability,” Rajamannar said, “designing these products with accessibility in mind gives them equal opportunity to benefit from the ease and security of a digital world. No one should be left behind.”

It is worth mentioning that the Touch Card is only one of Mastercard’s initiatives to empower those with visual impairments. The company includes its signature melody, which signifies that card transactions have been completed successfully at the checkout counter, among these efforts.


Photo by Marina Leonova from Pexels

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
Click here to access.

Source: https://finovate.com/mastercard-launches-touch-card-to-support-visually-impaired-consumers/

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