The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and its Hong Kong equivalent, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) have signed a co-operation agreement that will promote information sharing between the two regions, and introduce a referral system that will make it easier for approved, UK based fintech startups to set up operations in Hong Kong, and vice versa. Read more
The Digital Banking Report have released their sixth annual survey into Retail Banking Trends & Predictions; removing friction from the customer journey is the no. 1 concern. Read more
There is nothing quite like WeChat in the Western World – not even the likes of Facebook can compete with the number and range of services the platform offers to its 800m, mostly Chinese, users. Read more
Starling bank are arguably the UK’s most exciting Fintech “Challenger Bank” – that is, a new kind of firm offering users a different kind of banking proposition; simple, transparent, and without the hidden fees and charges that can make high street banks so unappealing to modern, mobile savvy millennials. Read more
The “Big 4” Challenger Banks
London may not be the world’s biggest FinTech hub, but there is an argument that says it is the most disruptive, and especially within the retail banking space.
There are no fewer than 5 recognised “Challenger banks” in operation currently, 4 based in London, and one in Durham. All have attracted significant funding, target millennials with mobile apps, instant spending reports and clever features, yet all face different challenges and issues as they battle to uproot the “big 4” high street banks; Lloyds, HSBC, Barclays and Natwest. Let’s have a look at 5 of the so-called challengers – in no particular order. Read more
The Spanish banking giant BBVA has completed the first successful trial of a new Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) known as Ripple. Read more
Call it bad timing, but no sooner had the European Union delivered the first Payment Service Directive (PSD), to provide a legal foundation for the introduction of SEPA, that’s the Single Euro Payments Area, which effectively created a single market for payments across the European Union, covering credit transfers, direct debits and cards, when the payments industry entered possibly its most “disruptive” period ever. Read more
After trialling the product for some time over here, Square, the US based payments provider startup founded by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, has finally launched in the UK.
Square, which floated on the New York Stock Exchange in November 2015 at a valuation of around $6bn, provides independent traders with a means to take card payments using a reader- and it will retail over here in the UK at just £39.
It got us thinking about other payments apps that are valuable to startups and SMEs, and in that spirit, we present 6 of the best we could find! Read more
Azimo created an industry first when the London-based Fintech startup launched an in-app function that allows users to send money abroad using only the recipients mobile phone number. Read more
If you are still using Western Union, Ria or your Bank to send money abroad, where have you been for the last decade! Times have changed, and tech disruption has made the process of sending money overseas a far more straightforward, efficient, and cheaper process, with the added bonus that you can shop around for the best rates and services.
In that spirit, we present 8 of our favourite money transfer apps, which you can download and use on the go with a smartphone, or at your leisure, saving yourself money in the process. Each one has different features to consider, but we’re sure that somewhere in this list you will find the one that’s right for you.
To compare rates from FCA authorised brokers as well as some of the best-regarded money transfer agencies like TransferWise or Azimo, why not try our money transfer comparison engine?
88% percent of banks globally are becoming increasingly concerned about losing business revenues to Fintech challenger firms, whilst 82% would like to partner more with them over the next three to five years, reveals a new report, Global Fintech Report 2017, released by PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Read more
If a bitcoin ATM sounds like something of an oxymoron, let us explain.
These machines, which are popping up more and more across London in particular, work in the opposite way to a traditional cash machine. Read more
This guide is brought to you by The Money Cloud, where you compare the best rates for sending money overseas offered by top authorised brokers and money transfer agencies.
Remember when all you would hear during the ad breaks for your favourite television programme would be “there’s an app for that”.
This was a few years ago now, when apps were brand new and the likes of Apple, Google and Samsung wanted you to learn all about these mysterious new widgets that could solve your everyday problems at a cinch.
If we were initially sceptical, we certainly took to them in the end, but the trouble was, for every Tinder, Citymapper, or Uber, there were too many apps, rushed out by companies desperate not to miss out on the next big thing, or designed by Silicon Valley geek squads, that simply didn’t cut the mustard.
They were either too niche, too complex, too badly built, or simply released to act like Trojan horses, sneaking their way onto your phones and accessing your personal data to sell on to advertising companies.
It may have taken financial services institutions longer than most to come to the app party, but in fact, we should be thankful for that.
Banking and personal finance apps can now make a genuine difference to our lives, for the better. Here’s how. Read more
Can Airwallex, with $13m Investment Led by Tencent, Become the Transferwise Of International B2B Money Transfer?
A new Melbourne, Australia based Fintech startup that has echoes of peer-to-peer money transfer service Transferwise but with more focus on the B2B market, has completed a USD$13 million Series A investment from Tencent, the company that owns China’s most popular social networking and now payments app, WeChat. Read more
In the past, real estate has often been seen as a business of relationships, reliant on contacts and personal connections. While that’s still hugely important, software trends are also becoming increasingly vital to the real estate industry. In the past year alone, venture capitalist projects have raised over $1.5bn US dollars towards software that could streamline your experience in the real estate market. Here’s a quick breakdown on what’s been going on.
In the developed world, sending money domestically is as simple as logging onto online banking. If you want to transfer funds in or to the developing world, however, you’ll often come up against a fairly fundamental block: the ‘unbanked’ phenomenon. But could the growing numbers of online platforms, from Gmail to Facebook, stepping up to the payment plate help societies break through the unbanked barrier? Read more
Laws granting the ‘right to be forgotten’ might seem like they’re about isolated cases of image control. In fact, this legislation could have huge implications for storing all types of information. As debates about whether Europeans can protect their data on a worldwide basis rage on, observers are starting the wonder where the laws end.
What’s going on? Read more
Ever heard the saying, ‘the customer is always right’? In the financial services industry, that hasn’t always been true. But a major new report published by the World Economic Forum (WEF) suggests that consumers’ luck is about to change as fintech continues to disrupt, embed and lead the way. The report, entitled ‘The Future of Financial Services’, examines how fintech is shaping the industry, and it pits agile tech start-ups against the established banking Goliaths to see how each will adapt and how they’ll co-exist. Read more
Commentators from The Economist to Forbes have hailed the triumphant start of the fintech revolution. The financial industry is finally catching up with every other sector that’s ploughing its profits into digitalising its services. The result? A customer-centric industry that’s taking $4.7tn away from traditional banking.
It started as a niche interest of tech-loving teens but soon grew into a social phenomenon. By the end of 2013, the Oxford Dictionaries named selfie ‘word of the year’, which wasn’t surprising given over a million selfies are taken every day. Now, the selfie has grown up and is getting a job in finance. Here’s the breakdown on how your next self-portrait could lead to a legitimate money transfer.