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How banks can remain relevant in the new world of payments

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In the lead up to EBAday 2021, Jens Audenaert, SVP, and GM of Payments for Diebold Nixdorf speaks to Finextra TV on the current state of the payments industry, and how the acceleration of alternative payment methods is changing the payments landscape. Audenaert provides insight into some of the challenges banks are facing and how modern technology can help banks adapt and stay relevant.

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This content has been created by the Finextra editorial team with inputs from subject matter experts at the funding sponsor.

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Source: https://www.finextra.com/videoarticle/2523/how-banks-can-remain-relevant-in-the-new-world-of-payments?utm_medium=rssfinextra&utm_source=finextrafeed

Payments

A Wallet to Freedom

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Let’s look at some activity in in the crypto wallet space for the last two, three months. Earlier this month, Jack Dorsey tweeted that Square is considering developing a crypto hardware wallet that would give users greater control over how they store and spend their bitcoin. French hardware wallet startup Ledger has raised a $380 million Series C funding round bringing the company’s valuation to $1.5 billion; In March ImToken, the crypto wallet developer, announced it raised $30 million in Series B funding; Blockset, the blockchain infrastructure platform for enterprises by BRD, announced early access to its wallet-as-a-service today, providing a white-label solution that gives clients the ability to launch wallets; In April, Exodus, the creator of a popular non-custodial crypto wallet, raised $60 million by selling stock in the company and accepting as payment bitcoin, ethereum, and USDC stablecoin; In March, Coinbase announced that it acquired Cipher Browser, a mobile browser and Ethereum wallet provider; Last but not least, Binance has confirmed that it has acquired Trust Wallet, a mobile Ethereum wallet. Cryptocurrencies have been capturing the attention of investors and users alike, largely driven by their steep increase in value. As a result, the demand for crypto wallets in on the rise. Crypto wallets are interfaces to protocols and services, that enable consumers and merchants to unlock the value of the $1.5+ trillion in digital assets currently held in cryptocurrencies.

Ilias Louis Hatzis is the founder and CEO at Kryptonio wallet.
Kryptonio is the safest crypto wallet. Read why you want Kryptonio and download it.

Wallets are critical infrastructure for cryptocurrencies. Every crypto behavior, whether buying or selling crypto, hodling crypto, sending crypto, staking crypto, relies on wallets in some way. Given their importance, over $1 billion of funding has gone to crypto wallet businesses to date, like Ledger ($380M), Blockchain ($300M), BRD ($55M), and Abra ($47M).

A cryptocurrency wallet is a secure digital gateway for users to see and transfer their digital currencies. Each crypto wallet has a public address, which can be thought of a bit like a mailbox, with the private key used to unlock the box. A user accesses and spends funds associated with a given address through the corresponding private key. Private keys are stored in crypto wallets, more similar to keychains than to traditional wallets. To be able to use any cryptocurrency for transactions, users are required to set up a cryptocurrency wallet first.

According to their preferences and expertise, users can choose among different types of crypto wallets. To name a few, hardware wallets are similar to USB drives, while desktop, mobile and web wallets are all software applications running on computers, smartphones or provided as a web service. Because private keys grant access to funds, the choice among wallets comes with strings attached in terms of privacy and security. Often wallets are custodial, which means storage and custody are offered as a service by a third party. This is the case of custodial exchanges, such as Coinbase. Alternatively, more skilled users want to retain sole custody of their private keys and use non-custodial wallets, also known as self-hosted or unhosted wallets.

Juniper predicts that the number of people using digital wallets will reach nearly 4 billion, by 2024. According to Statista, 73 million users have been reportedly using wallets for digital transactions, as of May 18, 2021. The number continues to grow as new blockchain wallets and cryptocurrencies are introduced to the market. It is estimated that the global user base for all cryptocurrencies increased by nearly 200 percent between 2018 and 2021.Trading in cryptocurrency is relatively easy compared to other assets. You can begin to trade just by signing up for various wallets on the market. There are different types of wallet apps, that support different cryptocurrencies, each with its own advantages, such as levels of security and accessibility. As of February 2021, there were at least 82 cryptocurrency wallets available (Cryptowisser, 2021). Among the most popular is Coinbase with 639,885 daily active users (DAUs) as of January 2021 (Airnow, 2021).

While wallets on centralized exchanges are really simple to use, the increasing number of crypto hacks have pushed businesses and individuals to non-custodial wallets. A report by the University of Cambridge says that 73% of the wallets do not save or control the private keys and 12% of the wallets let the users decide whether they wish the server to control their keys. It is expected even more users will move to non-custodial wallets, as more simplified approaches become available, that make it easy for users to recover their wallet.

Taking responsibility with a non-custodial wallet confers obvious benefits. For one thing, users are less likely to be hacked. As crypto price and adoption continue to grow, hackers will continue to focus on services with high concentrations of crypto. In 2020 alone, there were billions of dollars stolen during cryptocurrency heists. Storing assets on a big custodial provider, users are are risk of getting caught up in a data breach.

A lot of research and work is being done right now to design better wallet UX. For anyone that has ever written down seed phrases and private keys and stored them in a secret location, they understand that we need a lot more than a piece of paper, to make sure our money is safe. Non-custodial wallets need to become simpler and streamline user experience without compromizing security. They need to provide a simple banking-like experience, while maintaining custody and safety.

The future of crypto wallets is about the ability to provide well-integrated connections to every digital asset and financial service, focused on user experience and security. There will be many versions of wallets that hold various cryptocurrencies. But, unless you’re a digital native, the whole crypto experience feels scary. Most wallets lack the friendliness needed for the market to grow and achieve mass adoption. The first wallet to provide a name based public addresses, like a twitter handle, will get a big share of the market. Simplification of the user experience is the future of crypto wallets. While, crypto wallets can be a bit confusing to new users, riding the learning curve is worth it given the role wallets play in providing users with more financial freedom and economic opportunity.

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Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://dailyfintech.com/2021/06/21/a-wallet-to-freedom/

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Crowdfunding

Fintech Holding Firm APPS Acquires Cloud enabled Software Company Clique Payments

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Atlantic-Pacific Processing Systems NV, Corp. (APPS), a Fintech holding company offering technology and financial services, has reportedly acquired Cloud-enabled software firm Clique Payments, Inc.

The acquisition should allow APPS to further expand its enterprise resource planning and accounting payments integrations solutions to include QuickBooks, FreshBooks, Xero, Sage and other software apps. It will also be offering support for various payment processing services and over 20 major payment gateways. The terms of the deal were not shared publicly.

Abe Maghaguian, President and CEO at APPS, stated:

“Clique’s reseller-focus is highly complementary. The acquisition is also a really good fit with our APPSos platform for merchant lifecycle management and will enable independent software vendors, independent sales organizations, payment facilitators and bank sponsorship clients to expand their offerings while helping their clients streamline operations. We are very excited about the acquisition and welcome Clique to the APPS family.”

Clique’s software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform offers a set of solutions that comes with integrated payments acceptance for accounting and ERP software. Clients are able to access a front-office point-of-sale system that allows merchants to handle different types of transactions, such as fully integrated EMV, along with swipe and key-entered payments synched with back-office accounting software in real time.

Additionally, the platform supports invoice creation with email and text delivery, recurring billing, convenience fees, tokenization and various other features.

APPS’ “semi-integrated” Cloud POS terminal comes with connections to widely-used payment processing providers and gateways. The firm’s payment facilitation program and platform are  supported as well. ISVs who would like to provide card present payment services using the payfac model have managed to integrate access to solutions they require (all from a single source).

APPS CIO Brent Gephart remarked:

“Acquiring Clique gives ISVs, ISOs and their merchant customers easy access to a comprehensive suite of products and services, including highly desirable payments integration application programming interfaces, user interfaces and plugins to top accounting and ERP platforms. We look forward to rolling out Clique capabilities to clients and others looking to expand their offerings through this time-tested platform,.”

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Source: https://www.crowdfundinsider.com/2021/06/176817-fintech-holding-firm-apps-acquires-cloud-enabled-software-company-clique-payments/

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Crowdfunding

Remittance and Wallet App SendSpend Acquires E-Money Institution License from UK’s FCA

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SendSpend, the remittance and wallet app, reveals that it has acquired the Electronic Money Institution (EMI) license from the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The company will now be able to issue digital money and offer cross-border remittance services from its UK head offices.

SendSpend is co-operated with AuthoriPay Ltd, an established payments consultancy to facilitate their authorization and advise on appropriate Fintech business partners.

As a regulated EMI headquartered in the United Kingdom, SendSpend may now further extend its global financial reach to businesses and consumers in the UK, which should complement the operations of its subsidiaries in India and other jurisdictions.

The SendSpend platform is completely digital, free-of-cost for consumers, and may be used within minutes of registering through a downloadable software application.

Unlike some of the other mobile payment solutions, which are connected to a bank account, a  payment card, or a mobile operator, SendSpend’s platform and services are not. It’s reportedly owned and managed by SendSpend itself. The company claims that this setup helps with eliminating additional costs and complexities in the supply chain process, thus enabling a more economical and user-friendly service for consumers and merchants.

The newly granted e-money license will allow SendSpend to provide the following:

  • A Customer e-Wallet App
  • An Agent Services App
  • An e-Commerce and POS Payment Gateway including QR Code functionality
  • A Suite of API’s for corporate integration
  • An FX Suite for multi-currency transactions

Graham Davies, Co-found at SendSpend, stated:

“We set out to develop a payment system that was affordable, secure and functional. Also, SendSpend’s flexible and dynamic architecture enables us to adapt to different compliance and regulatory requirements encountered in different countries and regions. This allows us to offer a full suite of services and functionality when competitors often can’t.”

Tracy Andersson, Co-founder at SendSpend, remarked:

“Our Smart Agents are the backbone of SendSpend’s Agent Network. We’re taking financial services right into the villages and rural areas that frequently pose a challenge to financial institutions. Consumers no longer need to travel long distances to collect a remittance. Our goal is to enable economically marginalized consumers to participate in the digital economy by having access to financial services like insurance, money transfers and online buying.”

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://www.crowdfundinsider.com/2021/06/176823-remittance-and-wallet-app-sendspend-acquires-e-money-institution-license-from-uks-fca/

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Crowdfunding

UK Fintech Glint Pay, which Aims to Make Gold Alternative Global Currency, Secures £2.2M+ via Seedrs

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Glint Pay Inc., a subsidiary of the UK-based Fintech company that makes gold an alternative global currency by enabling its clients to buy, sell, save and spend their physical gold instantly through the Glint Debit Mastercard and Glint App, has secured 111% of its equity crowdfunding target (£1,999,998) via Seedrs with 14 days left (at the time of writing). A total of £2,223,641 has so far been acquired from 891 investors. Glint is also simultaneously running a securities offering on the US-based platform Republic.

Some of the main project highlights shared by Glint are as follows:

  • 49% growth 6 months, 79k registered, £158+ million transactions
  • Launched US office and full operations, including cards, in 2019
  • Principal Member of Mastercard UK + Glint it! P2P transfers
  • £26.41m pre-money valuation based on issued share capital

As covered, Glint was launched in 2015 and is on a mission to reintroduce gold as money into the global payments system.

In 2018, the Fintech firm released its mobile app and Mastercard to allow users to buy, store, and spend physical gold alongside national currencies and also built a proprietary technology platform providing real-time gold payments and multi-currency wallets with scalability in mind.

Glint raised more than £2.1 million through its Crowdcube funding round back in 2017.

Jason Cozens, CEO of Glint, stated:

“Welcome to Glint where we have taken gold, one of the most trusted and proven stores of wealth and made it liquid, enabling clients to buy, save, spend and send real gold, instantly and inexpensively, using our bespoke platform, through the Glint App and Mastercard.”

Cozens also revealed that their business is a regulated (UK FCA eMoney Issuer), multi-currency saving and payments platform, which they believe is the first in the world to allow instant, electronic transactions in digitized gold, at point of sale.

The company’s scalable tech allows clients to use their currencies (GBP, USD, EUR and GOLD), with their UK, EU and US issued Mastercards in 210 countries. Their P2P Service, Glint It!, allows clients “to send and receive gold and currency between Glint accounts in over 160 countries.”

Glint currently charges clients a 0.5% fee on the exchange of gold of FX. The company does receive an “interchange” fee (UK/EU 0.2% & US 0.9%) when its cards are used to buy something, this fee comes from the merchant, not the client. Glint also charges the client £/$/€1.50 for an ATM withdrawal.

Have a crowdfunding offering you’d like to share? Submit an offering for consideration using our Submit a Tip form and we may share it on our site!

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://www.crowdfundinsider.com/2021/06/176739-uk-fintech-glint-pay-which-aims-to-make-gold-alternative-global-currency-secures-2-2m-via-seedrs/

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