10 fintech startups of February

24 February 2017

Struggling to attract more customers and, hence, their funds companies continue researching and developing innovative products in financial technology industry in general and the crossing smart solutions field deeply integrated into the fintech both as its generator and the final result. Startups pop-up sporadically bringing more incredible and unmatched services ever from selling space flights for bitcoin to building dating platforms powered by blockchain. Here is our next review of ten startups for this month.

Digital Trade Chain

Digital Trade ChainIn mid-January announcement was made in mass media that seven largest banks are uniting their efforts to collaborate on a joint project powered by the blockchain technology. Memorandum of Understanding was signed by Deutsche Bank, HSBC, KBC, Natixis, Rabobank, Société Générale and UniCredit in Brussels over the launch of Digital Trade Chain (DTC).

The new blockchain project will be based on the proof-of-concept type of trade finance and supply chain platform initiated by KBC and will be introduced to streamline the process of trade finance for SMEs tackling a number of issues related to management, tracing and protecting the inland and global transactions by linking all stakeholders and devices, both online and mobile. Initial plans of the association of the banks under MoU are to build critical mass in seven European markets.

Mercedes Pay

Mercedes PayClose to that time another important report appeared to say that Stuttgart-based, global financial services provider Daimler Financial Services is striking a deal to acquire electronic money processor PayCash Europe, based in Luxembourg, in a move to develop its own payment platform under the ‘Mercedes pay’ brand. Mercedes pay will be integrated into the package of Daimler Mobility Services that comprises car-sharing enterprise “car2go” and mobile application known as mytaxi.

Board chairman of Daimler Financial Services noted that Mercedes pay provides secure and convenient access to customers to a payment environment where they may pay for a range of services offered by the company just from the comfort of their smartphones. Customers will need to provide their personal payment details only once, after which they can have continuous access to Daimler’s services which is ensured through eWallet functionality.

Matchpool blockchain dating

Matchpool blockchain datingIn late January former hedge fund manager Yonatan Ben Shimon cooperating with advisor Joe Shapira, a founder of Jewish dating service JDate, announced the launch of Matchpool dating platform powered by blockchain technology. The service will be based on Ethereum smart contracts that will be coordinating the reward structure of the service and the core logic underneath the whole system.

Matchpool will allow users to create their communities thus imitating the every-day life introductions usually made through relatives or friends. Founders of the communities will be rewarded for successful matches while common users will receive incentives just for participation. Matchpool will integrate dedicated Guppy token (GUP) to accrue incentives in the form of Guppies that may be redeemed through digital currency exchangers.

Positive Money

Positive MoneyAt the same period Belgium-based fintech company mozzeno announced the introduction of an innovative lending service for individuals. The loans will be provided between individual users of the service with the interest accrued on the loan paid to the individual investor. The system will allow borrowers to get access to the loan indirectly from other common service user like them thus evading the cumbersome process of banking loan formalization.

With Positive Money lenders become investors in special securities called “Notes” issued by mozzeno similar to bonds insured by Atradius ICP. mozzeno in turn will be looking for reliable borrowers verifying their information from the Central Individual Credit Register (CICR) and relying on the expertise of credit insurer Atradius ICP. Return on investments into the Notes will amount 5.79% gross and 3.91% net. Based on the risk category the insurance coverage for the investments will account from 60% to 100%. In any case all the formalities related to the loan provision will be handled exclusively by mozzeno itself, investors won’t need to do anything.

Blockchain and Virtual Currency Association of India

Blockchain Reserve Bank of India announced in early February that in a move to help customers across the nation to increase their awareness of the blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies, dedicated Association will be opened in the country with the participation of the nation’s leading startups in the industry Coinsecure, Searchtrade, Unocoin and Zebpay.

The aforementioned startups met in Mumbai after the publication of the circular by the Reserve Bank of India where the bank underlined its position on the blockchain and cryptocurrency, stressing that the bank has provided neither licensing, nor authorization for fintech startups operating in India, warning consumers of potential risks associated with the new technologies and subsequent services. The Association, as noted in the official reports, will make every effort to improve bitcoin awareness nationwide, while also advising customers of various risks and Ponzi schemes accompanying products gaining high popularity.

Orange Pro Payment

Orange Pro PaymentIn first decade of February Orange and Ingenico Payment Services unveiled their new project called Orange Pro Payment targeting, mainly, small businesses, private entrepreneurs and other business owners. Orange Pro Payment is a mobile payment platform that requires the use of any mobile device like smartphone or tablet paired via Bluetooth with the terminal to accept payments made with cards, including MasterCard, Maestro and Visa. Mobile devices connected with the terminal thus represent the cashier enabling immediate transactions.

The solution will be of benefit for people providing services at the door of their customers such as gardeners, nurses or visiting physicians, as well as people selling something at market places, food trucks, cleaners and those employees of small firms that need to visit customers at home to deliver some purchases or services. Orange Pro Payment will feature secure transaction processing and fast remittance of funds to the account at a low cost. The companies announced that the new solution can be accessed at a cost of 119€ (purchase terminal) + 9,95€/month (excl. VAT).

Shell payment solution for Jaguar cars

Jaguar carsLast week Shell and Jaguar announced the introduction of the in-car payment system to allow drivers of new Jaguar cars across the UK fill the fuel and pay from their touchscreen from the comfort of their cabin. At any participating Shell fuelling stations users can specify the amount of fuel they need and checkout using PayPal or Apple Pay via the dedicated Shell app available for downloading currently in the UK with the global rollout scheduled later this year.

Jaguar drivers may come to any Shell pump station and pay for the fuel from their car’s touchscreens via PayPal or Apple Pay wallet. According to the official statement Shell app will later this year add Android Pay functionality as well. The touchscreen will display the electronic receipt which can also be sent to driver’s email address.

Esme lending service

Esme lending serviceBritish banking company NatWest last week announced its alternative to exponentially growing P2P lending and other alternative lending services with the launch of its own loan provision platform called Esme. Esme will targe small- and medium-sized enterprises offering them unsecured loans up to 150,000 for a maximum of five years. According to the company’s statement the decision in favor of the borrowing business may be made in a matter of one hour with no early repayment charges.

While the bank used to previously refer its customers to some partnering P2P lenders and other alternative lending services, not NatWest may offer its own instant financing platform with the loans to be provided to business out of NatWest’s own balance sheet. Realizing the ever growing competition on the part of fintech startups providing P2P lending services NatWest wants to make progress in occupying the niche in the new market and reduce the loan formalizing process eliminating the need in long hours of paperwork. Under the terms of the new platform loans will be provided to businesses with a turnover of more than £15,000 and maximum of £25 million and trading for at least 18 months.

Ticinocoin cryptocurrency

Ticinocoin cryptocurrencyThe province of Switzerland located in the southmost part of the country, Ticino canton unveiled this week its plans to develop and launch its own regional cryptocurrency to be known as ticinocoin (TIC). The new cryptocurrency is developed by scientists Claudio Rossini and Michele Fiscalini who have already tested it with the pilot phase of the project completed last week.

Ticinocoin currency on the basis of blockchain technology is aimed at boosting the local economy of the region, providing faster and less expensive transactions with increased transparency. TIC will only be used in settlement for local services and goods from Ticino. According to preliminary statements, exchange rate of ticinocoin is 1 Swiss franc, but still the circulation of the new cryptocurrency may require approval by FINMA.

Dreams.Build crowdfunding platform

Yesterday Dreams.Build LLC unveiled the global launch of Dreams.Build crowdfunding platform developed by Dreams.Build founder and CEO Dakota M. Gallimore. The crowdfunding platform is aimed to help innovators or developers and sponsors meet together to create some genuinely high-end and cutting-edge product.

The new crowdfunding platform, as explained by its creators, have a number of features distinguishing it against the background of a host of other players in the market. Dreams.Build will be transferring about 5% of the revenues to non-profit charitable organizations. The funding on the platform will be provided in the two-stage process protecting both sponsors and idea owners against fraud. Dreams.Build creates a special community hub for developers allowing them to gather their target audience, their crowd to support their ideas and projects. Besides, the service will provide free incentives to innovators enabling them to reach their sponsors both monetarily and non-monetarily. The launch of the crowdfunding platform is effective immediately across 23 nations worldwide with the special payment processing service allowing to convert 193 currencies.

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