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Digital Money Firm Merchantrade Asia Partners LintraMax to Offer Digitized Payroll to Malaysian Plantation Workers

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Earlier this week, Merchantrade Asia, a digital money services business operator and e-money issuer, teamed up with palm plantation management services provider LintraMax in order to digitize the payroll system for underserved plantations workers in Malaysia.

Through the partnership, Merchantrade Asia and LintraMax plan to reach out to the plantations’ workers in order to show them the benefits of using Merchantrade Money, a digital wallet offered by Merchantrade.

Merchantrade’s management noted that digital wages payment services may assist firms with lowering the overall risks associated with using or carrying physical cash. The solutions may also help with minimizing or eliminating the need to make physical contact during the COVID-19 health crisis while ensuring greater transparency of company payroll processes.

Through the digital wallet, workers should be able to get their wages and have improved access to virtual payments platforms, which should allow for convenient cashless purchases of provisions as well as being able to send funds back home to friends and family.

The firm further noted that migrant workers will find its online wallet solution ideal or well-suited for their needs as it comes with support in several different languages.

Additionally, they’ll  offer the Merchantrade’s digital payment solutions to oil palm plantations that have been using the Quarto plantation management system provided by LintraMax.

At present, there are around 100 plantation firms across Malaysia that are using the Quarto plantation management system offered by LintraMax.

Khor Kheng Khoon, Founder and Managing Director of LintraMax, stated:

“Payroll processing at plantations is the main pain point that we are trying to address through this partnership. Currently, many plantations still rely on cash and cheques to pay employee wages every month. These methods are not the most efficient or safest, so LintraMax hopes to turn these methods of wages payment into digital, such as through the use of digital wallets. This is where Merchantrade’s expertise is crucial for the mission, and we are excited to partner with them.”

Ramasamy K. Veeran, Merchantrade’s Founder and Managing Director, remarked:

“We are excited to partner with LintraMax to enable seamless digital experience into their growing ecosystem through our innovative Merchantrade Money e-wallet. We believe that this collaboration is a definite step in the right direction and will indeed benefit the plantation management space and drive digital payments adoption as it not only benefits plantation companies as well as directly impacts workers daily lives by encouraging digital experience.”

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Source: https://www.crowdfundinsider.com/2021/06/176563-digital-money-firm-merchantrade-asia-partners-lintramax-to-offer-digitized-payroll-to-malaysian-plantation-workers/

Crowdfunding

Calgary, Alberta’s Allied Venture Partners Confirms they’ve Invested $1M+ into Early-Stage Tech Firms

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Allied Venture Partners confirmed on July 23, 2021, that they have invested over $1 million into early-stage tech startups while helping to close almost $13 million in total funding since their October 2020 debut.

Based in Calgary, Alberta, AlliedVP invests in early-stage tech firms from across North America, with a focus on “driving additional foreign investment into Western Canada‘s technology ecosystem” while offering local investors “greater diversification and access to high-potential deal flow.”

Matthew Wilson, Founder and MD at Allied Venture Partners, stated:

“Crossing the $1 Million mark in just nine short months is an exciting milestone. As the economic impact from Covid-19 continues to affect the local oil & gas industry, investor mindsets are expanding to include high-growth & innovative industries, like technology.”

Wilson also noted that when coupled with additional government stimulus into their fast-evolving tech sector, Western Canada remains one of North America’s fastest-growing tech centers.

Wilson added that several major funding announcements have helped to put their tech ecosystem on the map, “namely from local tech companies Symend, Athennian, Benevity, Neo Financial, Absorb Software… and the list goes on.” Alberta continues to “emerge as a global AI & ML hub, with the number of technology companies more than doubling since 2018, to more than 3,000,“ he added.

Allied Venture Partners was established as “a means of driving experienced outside capital into Western Canada’s technology ecosystem while providing local investors with greater access to high-potential deal flow from established VC markets.”

Wilson also mentioned that early indications indicate that their alternative outside-in model is “working exceptionally well, having already given local investors access to numerous venture-scale technology opportunities alongside top-tier VCs.” Concurrently, their diverse investor network has “grown exponentially, now with more than 700 members globally,” Wilson claims.

He remarked:

“Our investor network not only includes angels, VCs & institutional funds but also a wealth of entrepreneur/operators, from senior engineers at Google & Amazon to founders and C-suite executives at billion-dollar tech unicorns. In addition, the launch of our Scout Program has been a key growth driver, and we are now at the exciting inflection point where we can showcase our promising local tech startups to a globally diverse & experienced network of technology investors.”

AlliedVP’s first $1 million has been invested across five firms ranging from Seed to Series A, along with one “follow-on” investment. Industries include Gaming, Blockchain, FinTech, Enterprise SaaS, MarTech, Finance & Consumer Marketplaces, according to an update shared with Crowdfund Insider.

Wilson continued:

“Most importantly, we are seeing early indications of establishing the brand we set out to build. We’re attracting the types of highly talented, passionate & innovative entrepreneurs we aspire to work with, and they are choosing to partner with us as they build world-class companies.”

Allied Venture Partners or AlliedVP is one of Canada’s biggest angel investor groups that is focused on diversifying Western Canada’s funding ecosystem for tech entrepreneurs and investors.

The group’s threefold strategy aims “to broaden the pool of available capital for local startups, provide local investors with greater portfolio diversification via outside deal flow opportunities, while acting as a trusted conduit among foreign investors wishing to gain access to Canada’s fastest-growing technological hub.”

AlliedVP is based in Calgary, Canada with another office in Sydney, Australia. Startups may submit applications for backing and investors may join the group by visiting allied.vc.

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Source: https://www.crowdfundinsider.com/2021/07/178263-calgary-albertas-allied-venture-partners-confirms-theyve-invested-1m-into-early-stage-tech-firms/

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Top 10 Fintech News Stories for the Week Ending July 24, 2021

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Another acquisition by Visa, another fintech SPAC starts trading and Square Banking highlight another busy news week in fintech. We also saw the release of a new bitcoin rewards card and bad news for one of the leading crypto lenders while across the pond Starling demonstrated that you can be profitable as a digital bank. Here are what I consider to be the top 10 most important fintech news stories of the past week.

Visa acquires Currencycloud, which makes APIs for remittances and currency transfers, in a $963M deal from TechCrunch – Visa announced their second big acquisition in Europe in as many months as the payments leader looks to ramp up its cross border remittances capability.

Fintech OppFi goes public as CEO looks to alleviate America’s emergency savings drought from CNBC – OppFi closed their SPAC transaction and started trading this week on the New York Stock Exchange as the year of going public continues for fintech.

Billionaire Jack Dorsey’s Square Launches A Small Business Checking Account from Forbes – Ron Shevlin gives us his take on the new Square checking account that was launched this week called Square Banking and while he is generally positive on the move, he thinks they may struggle to dominate small business banking.

The new Upgrade Bitcoin Rewards Card pays 1.5% back in bitcoin with no annual fee, and anyone can apply from Business Insider – There has been a lot of movement in bitcoin rewards cards this year but those that have been announced are only in limited release. Upgrade beats the rest of the industry to the punch with a card available to everyone, pitching it as an onramp to crypto.

BlockFi’s interest product draws scrutiny from Alabama, Texas regulators from The Block – It has been a bad week for BlockFi. It started with a cease and desist from the New Jersey attorney general and then Alabama and Texas jumped into the fray. The issue is that these states believe BlockFi’s core product, the interest account, is a security.

Starling Banks’s 2021 results see 600% jump in revenues and 8 months of profitability from AltFi – Starling Bank released results through March 31 and they continue to do well. They are the only digital bank in the UK that seems to have turned the corner on profitability.

i80 Group has quietly committed $1B in credit to the fintech and proptech worlds from TechCrunch – The debt capital space for startups continues to evolve with one of the largest players now being i80 having funded more than $1 billion funded now.

Blockchain start-ups raised a record $4.4 billion in the second quarter despite the slump in crypto prices from CNBC – More analysis from CB Insights shows it was a good funding quarter for blockchain focused startups.

India considering phased roll out of central bank digital currency from TechCrunch – The deputy governor of the Reserve Bank of India said this week that the country has studied the risks and will be moving forward with their plan to roll out their CBDC in phases.

How Tech Won the Pandemic and Now May Never Lose from The New York Times – Tech-centric companies from many industries, including fintech, have grown rapidly during the past 18 months, setting themselves up for a dominant future.


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Source: https://www.lendacademy.com/top-10-fintech-news-stories-for-the-week-ending-july-24-2021/

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Adventure Awaits with These 6 Travel Products

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Now that work is increasingly going remote, life is getting more vacation-friendly every day. From the mountains to the world’s great cities, we have put together a list of travel products that will take all of your trips to the next level.

Just a quick reminder that crowdfunding is not the same as your regular old online shopping. Not all campaigners can send you your goods immediately, but luckily you can use these travel products for a lifetime of adventure.

Whether you’re traveling around your city, or exploring one across the world, Origami is your tote, your backpack, and your carry-on. It has mesh pockets to take your bag from black hole to type-A organizational paradise, a roomy middle pocket for larger items, and even a secret compartment for your passport. You can easily fold it up and bring it in your suitcase, or slide it securely onto the handle so you’re not awkwardly dropping your computer on the airport floor. 

[Bonus: Check out our recent Day in the Life feature with the bag’s creator, Vanessa Jeswani)

Does your dog love going camping as much as you do? Then get a tent that’s built for Fido’s pleasure as much as your own. The Kings Peak Tent is a backpacking tent that’s specially made with space for your dog. It has a separate section in the tent for your dog that’s accessible through large indoor mesh wall . It also has a separate outside doggy door. You and your dog will both get a better night’s rest with your own spaces with the Kings Peak Tent.

It is always a good idea to bring a deck of cards on any trip. They come in handy while waiting for a delayed flight and can diffuse even the inevitable tense moments that occur after spending too long with the same people in a very small space. The Air Deck 3.0 is light and compact enough to put in your meticulously packed and weighed backpacking pack. And what’s more: they are washable and waterproof, making it a breeze to clean the worldly germs right off.

Regardless of where you’re going, you’re going to need a backpack. And I don’t mean your classic school bag with limp straps and a broken zipper. The makers of the ERA Backpack are not messing around. They have created a fully waterproof backpack that has special compartments designed to keep your camera safe, your clothes clean, and all of your devices charged. I know what you’re thinking: isn’t it going to be heavy with all of that stuff inside? The answer is no. The makers of ERA use their proprietary Distributor Harness to make your load feel light and cool all day long.

Trek to the desert? No problem. Off the grid by the mountains? You got it. Or maybe you just want a relaxing day at the beach with your family. With the Crua AER you can travel far and wide, with the only limitations being your snack supply. This tent lives on top of you car and sets up in a snap, and it regulates the temperature inside to keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It lets you get out into the wild faster and more comfortably. 

While we’re talking about efficient packing, we can’t forget to mention HercLéon Kribi, the innovative underwear created with a unique antibacterial fiber. HercFiber is a blend of bamboo, eucalyptus, beechwood, and copper fiber, all working together for maximum softness, cleanliness, and freshness. No matter the humidity of your destination, HercLeon will keep you dry and odor-free all day long.

You’re probably planning a trip as you read this, so head over to our Travel Collection for more travel products to make your next adventure the best one yet.


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Source: https://go.indiegogo.com/blog/2021/07/travel-products-adventure-awaits.html

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Properly, a Canadian Tech-Enabled Real Estate Brokerage, Secures CAD 44M via Series B from Bain Capital Ventures, Others

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Properly, the Canadian technology-powered real estate brokerage, reveals that it has secured CAD 44 million through its Series B financing in order to support its national expansion across Canada’s $400 billion real estate market.

As noted by the company in a blog post, Bain Capital Ventures led Properly’s financing, and was joined by investors Intact Ventures, the venture unit Canada’s largest provider of property and casualty insurance, and FCT, the national service provider in real estate tech and title insurance.

Several prominent individuals also took part in Properly’s round, including Mike Katchen (co-founder and CEO of Wealthsimple), Spencer Rascoff (co-founder and former CEO of Zillow and Pacaso) through his firm 75 & Sunny, Eric Wu (co-founder and CEO of Opendoor), Lydia Jett (Softbank Vision Fund), and Jonathan Ehrlich (Partner at Foundation Capital and former head of marketing at Facebook).

Anshul Ruparell, co-founder and CEO of Properly, stated:

“We’re creating a future where Canadians can buy or sell a home with dramatically less friction and surprising simplicity. We’re bringing best-in-class tools and services to the market to support our customers from their initial home search through to closing a home sale. As a result, we’ve experienced exponential growth, but we’re just at the start of our journey. We’re excited to use this financing to bring better services to Canadians across the country.”

Merritt Hummer, Partner at Bain Capital Ventures. said that they have invested in several high-potential Proptech firms based in the US and their investment in Properly is their “first of this kind in Canada.”

Hummer added:

“The vision that Anshul and his team have to transform the home buying and selling experience and the unquestionable need for innovation in the Canadian real estate industry is what compelled us to invest in Properly. We are proud to lead their Series B financing to help accelerate their growth plans nationally.”

Properly is currently working to make real estate transactions “genuinely frictionless.” The firm also noted that the investments from Intact Ventures and FCT will serve to complement current partnerships with large Canadian banks “to enable Properly to provide a more seamless home buying experience for Canadians.”

Justin Smith-Lorenzetti, Investment Director at Intact Ventures added:

“We were impressed by Properly’s growth and the innovative tools and services the company has already brought to the real estate industry. The company’s vision to better serve the customer, especially in major real estate markets, is important. We’re looking forward to working with Anshul and his team and supporting Properly in enabling a more seamless home buying experience for Canadians.”

Michael LeBlanc, CEO at FCT, noted:

“Investing in Properly is consistent with FCT’s desire to support innovative companies with strategies to streamline real estate transactions. We look forward to supporting Properly’s vision to advance the real estate journey for Canadian homebuyers.”

To learn more about Properly’s current portfolio of proprietary tools and services along with other details, check here.

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
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Source: https://www.crowdfundinsider.com/2021/07/178219-properly-a-canadian-tech-enabled-real-estate-brokerage-secures-cad-44m-via-series-b-from-bain-capital-ventures-others/

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