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Venture capital continues to grow in South Africa – survey

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Fintech

Zeal Solutions and Basiq partner to leverage consumer-consented data throughout the credit lifecycle

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With the Comprehensive Credit Reporting (CCR) regime, Consumer Data Right (CDR), and the proliferation of alternative credit, detailed analysis of a borrower’s financial viability is more important than ever. Comprehensive, accurate and up to date customer financial data can not only help financial institutions better service borrowers with a positive credit history and a new generation of ‘borrowers’ but also those going through financial hardship.

To help more providers and lenders take advantage of consumer-consented data throughout the credit lifecycle, Basiq and Zeal Solutions have partnered to provide enriched credit assessment solutions that accelerate customer onboarding with real-time data and improve servicing and decisioning through transaction insights.

Since 2006, Zeal Solutions has helped some of Australia’s largest financial institutions manage consumer and commercial credit risk with a suite of products and services across loan origination, debt collection and compliance. By partnering with Basiq, Zeal is now able to get a live feed of financial data, whether it’s being stored in a bank, fintech or alternative credit provider. Basiq ensures all the data returned is normalised and enriched for insights so that Zeal can help make the best financial decisions on behalf of customers. This includes identification of discretionary versus non-discretionary spend to better assess an applicant’s current financial situation as well as their ability to adjust spending to improve affordability in the future.

Specifically, Zeal will use Basiq’s consumer-consented transaction data and insights to:

  • Accelerate onboarding processes with the ability to instantly understand customer spend and their ability to service a loan based on up to two years of transaction data.
  • Add Personal Financial Management functionality to provide customers with insights into spending and saving patterns.
  • Provide clients with ‘Customer Assistance’ tools that help customers repay their debts through informed transaction data.

By partnering with Basiq Zeal Solutions can also provide clients with ongoing visibility into a customer’s finances. Having real-time, ongoing digital visibility into a customer’s financial position can assist customers in repayments through tailored payment plans. This extends to automated notices and reminders. Zeal Solutions Digital Collect Ezee system also provides an integrated payment gateway, which combined with their real-time system, provides a powerful solution to increase collection rates.

For Zeal’s CEO, Dion Nathanielsz, financial data is key to revolutionising credit risk management, adding, “Only recently have we started to see the use of alternative data sets in credit performance. The benefits are clear but there’s been little in the market that reflects how powerful financial data can be. We are extremely excited with this partnership as it allows us to execute on these benefits and leverage transactional data insights to improve every aspect of the credit lifecycle for borrowers and lenders.”

As the CDR facilitates more Open Banking participation, Basiq will allow Zeal to take advantage of comprehensive, accurate and up to date customer financial data from an even wider set of institutions. For Basiq CEO, Damir Ćuća, open access to enhanced data will reduce the information imbalance between borrowers and lenders whilst helping borrowers through hardship.

“Mandated data sharing under Open Banking and CCR make it possible to better differentiate and service customers based on risk. Making this more accessible will only lead to better pricing for low-risk customers, more accurate lending decisions and the ability to better assist customers going through financial hardship.”

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Source: https://australianfintech.com.au/zeal-solutions-and-basiq-partner-to-leverage-consumer-consented-data-throughout-the-credit-lifecycle/

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Aerospace

TrustPoint raises $2 million for GPS alternative

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SAN FRANCISCO – TrustPoint Inc., a startup developing a global navigation satellite system (GNSS), has raised $2 million in seed funding from venture capital firm DCVC.

With the funding announced Oct. 18, TrustPoint plans to expand its engineering team, continue developing core technologies, including satellite payload testing, and extend key partnerships.

Heavy global reliance on GPS, Europe’s Galileo, Russia’s Glonass and China’s Beidou for everything from communications and transaction timing to maritime and aircraft navigation is prompting companies and government agencies to look for backups and alternatives.

TrustPoint founders Patrick Shannon, a former Astro Digital vice president, and Chris DeMay, former Hawkeye 360 founder and chief technology officer, said GPS alternatives are necessary because the current system is inaccurate, slow, unencrypted, and susceptible to jamming and spoofing. What’s more, GNSS systems alone are not precise enough for many of the emerging commercial applications like drone delivery, self-driving cars, urban air transportation and augmented reality, Shannon and DeMay said.

TrustPoint’s GNSS alternative is intended to provide government and commercial customers with improved service, security and reliability. Promised improvements “include better accuracy, quicker time to first fix, and anti-spoof and anti-jam capabilities,” according to the news release.

“NewSpace startups have been successfully revolutionizing a host of space applications, like launch, earth observation and communications for the past decade,” Patrick Shannon, TrustPoint co-founder and CEO, said in a statement. “Our effort to develop a fully commercial GNSS service is the logical next step to this trend, a much-needed layer of security for today’s GPS users, and an enabler for nascent applications in the autonomous navigation sector.”

DCVC Partner Chris Boshuizen, who led the firm’s investment in TrustPoint, said in a statement, “It’s easy to imagine TrustPoint’s innovative and fast-evolving commercial service alongside government GNSS, or even as the primary solution.”

Boshuizen, the former Planet CTO and co-founder who was one of the passengers on the recent Blue Origin New Shepard flight, will join the board of directors for TrustPoint, a firm based in Silicon Valley and Northern Virginia.

DCVC also has invested in radar satellite operator Capella Space and launch vehicle provider Rocket Lab.


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Source: https://spacenews.com/trustpoint-seed-round/

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Aerospace

VC firm Embedded Ventures signs cooperative agreement with U.S. Space Force

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This is the Space Force’s first cooperative agreement with a venture capital firm

WASHINGTON — Embedded Ventures, a venture capital firm investing in space startups, has signed a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Space Force, the company announced Oct. 13.

Under the Cooperative Research and Development Agreement, or CRADA, Embedded Ventures will work with SpaceWERX, a new Space Force organization created to build ties with commercial industry and startups. The terms and the length of the agreement were not disclosed. 

“The parties will collaboratively investigate the potential benefits of leveraging VC investment practices to accelerate the pace of change and innovation,” the firm said in a news release. “They will also examine the U.S. Space Force and industry business relationships to define future methods for investment into the VC ecosystem.”

This is the Space Force’s first cooperative agreement with a VC firm. The CRADA “enables the two entities to collaborate on research and development opportunities promoting U.S. space industry growth to prepare for the future of an expanded space economy and for the defense of U.S. interests,” the company said.

Embedded Ventures, based in Los Angeles, was founded in November 2020 by tech entrepreneur Jenna Bryant and Jordan Noone, who was co-founder of Relativity Space. The firm has not announced what specific space ventures it is investing in, but said they are companies in the space infrastructure sector developing dual-use technologies for commercial and government use, including in-space communications and logistics, life extension vehicles and resource extraction.

“SpaceWERX is excited to formalize this agreement with Embedded Ventures, creating a highly collaborative and efficient workflow between our two groups, while keeping us all accountable,” said Lt. Col. Walter “Rock” McMillan, director of SpaceWERX.

Mandy Vaughn, former president of Virgin Orbit’s VOX Space, is an operating partner at Embedded Ventures and helped develop the agreement. “Space is inherently different in that it leverages commercial industry as an integral part of every space capability,” she said. Vaughn has argued for changes in the government procurement culture so it can take advantage of emerging technologies and services from the commercial space industry.


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Source: https://spacenews.com/vc-firm-embedded-ventures-signs-cooperative-agreement-with-u-s-space-force/

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Ecommerce

Platform partnership with Square further strengthens payments offering from Propell

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ASX-listed SME-focused fintech Propell has partnered with global omnichannel payments business Square to integrate its eCommerce payments into the Propell platform.

Propell has built a leading digital, cloud-based, platform offering tailored finance products to help small to medium businesses manage and optimise their cash flow, with products including business insights, payments and lending.

A key strategy for Propell is to provide insights and guidance as well as seamless access to finance products for its customers. This partnership gives businesses of all types and sizes access to one of Australia’s most used payments tools, Square. Propell will work closely with Square to provide eCommerce payments to businesses in industries, such as retail, food and beverage, hair and beauty, professional services, and home and repair.

The addition of Square on the Propell platform gives Propell customers greater flexibility in getting paid, improving both the user experience with their end customer as well as their cashflow.

“Square’s core principle is to help businesses of all types and sizes participate and thrive in the economy. Whether online, in person, or both, we make it simpler for businesses to take payments, access capital to support their growth or use tools to help run their business,” said Shawn Johnson, Head of Partnerships for Square in Australia. “Partnering with Propell enables businesses on the platform to have greater choice of how they get paid, but also gives them the ability to make the most of our powerful online payments capabilities.”

Propell is continuing to execute on a well-defined strategy to attract new customers and further enhance the Platform by adding additional proprietary and third-party products to drive growth in both overall revenues and revenue per customer.

Propell CEO, Michael Davidson said, “I am delighted to be announcing our platform partnership with Square, which we are confident will further improve the Propell platform and customer proposition, underpinning continued growth.

“A key focus at Propell is to help our customers to better understand and manage their finances and provide access to products and services to improve their cashflow. The partnership with Square will help enable these improvements.”

PlatoAi. Web3 Reimagined. Data Intelligence Amplified.
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Source: https://australianfintech.com.au/platform-partnership-with-square-further-strengthens-payments-offering-from-propell/

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