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Ilias Louis Hatzis is the Founder & CEO at Mercato Blockchain Corporation AG and Weekly Columnist at Daily Fintech.
Faster than a speeding bullet. More powerful than a locomotive. Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s Bitcoin! According to Wikipedia, Bitcoin is a decentralized digital currency without a central bank or single administrator that can be sent from user to user on the peer-to-peer Bitcoin network without the need for intermediaries. The pace of Lightning innovation since its debut early last year has been staggering and the Lightning Network could help turn Bitcoin into Superman!
Editor note: Lightning Network is in that awkward phase. It is no longer the technically interesting bleeding edge project, but nor has it yet enabled the new use cases that get mainstream adoption. Growth data is promising but we are still in wait and see mode (or building something hopefully-useful with it).
Tuesday Efi Pylarinou @efipm our Swiss-based Fintech Adviser wrote Transparency, Transparency, Transparency in portfolio performance
Four years ago, I started preaching about Transparency in wealth management. In the Global Transparency movement in Portfolio Performance from the Daily Fintech archives in October 2015, I asked for
`… a world in which Barron’s top advisor annual rankings take into account performance. Believe it or not, right now these rankings don’t include performance (it is stated in the fine print) and are probably heavily influenced by AUM.’
Editor note: Wealth management customers want performance transparency and technology enables this, but it is a major disruption to the Wealth management industry.
Wednesday Jessica Ellerm @jessicaellerm, our Australia-based Fintech entrepreneur, wrote Bluevine Banks Big On SMB Banking with Series F Raise
Jessica Ellerm is a thought leader specializing in Small Business and the Gig Economy and is the CEO and Co-Founder of Zuper, a new superannuation startup in Australia.
Fintech Bluevine is the latest SMB focussed startup to hit the headlines, after successfully completing its Series F raise. The business financing startup has banked $102.5 million from some of the biggest names in banking, technology and VC, including UK finance institution Nationwide, Microsoft’s venture fund M12 and Silicon Valley big name Menlo Ventures, as it looks to get deeper into SMBs pockets, with banking products.
Editor note: This is a sign of SMB Finance becoming mainstream with a big raise from a top tire VC and strategic investors.
Thursday Patrick Kelahan @insuranceeleph1, our US based Insurtech expert, wrote Innovate from the customer backwards- but caveat innovator!
Patrick Kelahan is a CX, engineering & insurance professional, working with Insurers, Attorneys & Owners. He also serves the insurance and Fintech world as the ‘Insurance Elephant’.
The insurance industry is in large part past the hysteria of disruption, innovation and entrants solving the issues of the insurance world, and is moving into the stage of implementation, collaboration and iteration. Startups that have gained traction are now broadening their markets, and in some cases, their offerings. And, the industry is recognizing that innovation is good, prevention is better, and combination of the two is best. But is prevention without issues? Can a large gray beast show the way?
Editor note: Prevention is a wonderful win/win for Insurance carriers and customers, but much easier said than done. This article describes innovation focussed on prevention in both Auto and Property.
Friday Arunkumar Krishnakumar @karunk, our London based Fintech investor, wrote Has Softbank’s Vision fund lost sight as it invests in PayTM $1 Bn raise despite mounting losses?
They lost $4.6 Billion with the WeWork deal. They have struggled to raise fund-2. They are now focused on profitability rather than growth.
Yet, Softbank fund joined by Alibaba’s Ant Financial pooled in $600 Million for PayTM’s recent $1 Billion fund raise. PayTM is valued at $16 Billion at the end of this funding round. They were valued at $10 Billion just last year when Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway invested in them.
Editor note: The growth vs profitability debate is part of the macro cycle. What is missing/prized today is growth. But when/if we get tighter fiscal conditions, profitability will be prized, leading to tough choices for PayTM and other unicorns who have chased growth more than profitability.
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