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Nium, the payments startup in fintech which is based out of Singapore will be getting a fresh round of funding which will be led by new investors, BRI Ventures, and Visa.Nium which was founded in 2014, was formerly known as InstaReM, has closed four funding rounds which have totaled up to $59 million since its inception.The size of this newest funding round is yet to be disclosed.The chief executive officer (CEO) and co-founder of Nium, Prajit Nanu made a statement that expressed his excitement of getting the backing of extremely prestigious and new investors such as Visa and BRI Ventures.Prajit also stated that this new funding is a testament to the vote of confidence of the company’s business model and its resilience despite the current environment.InvestmentsNium, the cross-border payments organization is known for offering a diverse portfolio of products and solutions that are designed keeping in mind the simplification of processes of payments, deposits, and money transfers.The company’s remittance-as-a-service (RaaS) capabilities have been serving and catering to millions of users spread across 10 licensed jurisdictions.The newest additions are Indonesia and Japan.The company serves business clients spread across six continents when taking into consideration the enterprise front.Nium has goals of getting rid of the inefficiencies faced, that quite often the processes of digital payments in payroll, eCommerce, and other business functions.This new investment will support Nium in building out the payment infrastructure of the company to reach out to more SMBs, financial institutions, corporates, and households.It will also be sued for product development practices and vertical expertise and tuck-in-acquisitions in the U.S, the U.K, Europe, and India.To know more about such information and news from the fintech sector, follow the fintechbuzz.
Singapore-based remittance company Nium has decided to withdraw from the digital banking license race in the city-state as it focuses on its global payments business instead.While Singapore is a key market for the company, it is only one of the 41 countries it serves, and Nium has decided to shift its focus to new markets, with a “strong” emphasis on Latin America, said Nium co-founder and CEO Prajit Nanu in a LinkedIn post.“The core of Nium has grown 3x this year and slated to grow 4x next year.It made lot of sense for us to focus our energies to grow the core faster instead of a distraction,” Nanu wrote.“As a four-year-old startup, we have decided to pick a fight which we will win.”According to a report by the Straits Times, Nium is looking to acquire new electronic money institution licenses for card issuing and stored value facilities in Mexico and Brazil.
Global Digital Payments (GDP), a fintech startup based out of Singapore looking to serve small to mid-size enterprises, has raised US$1 million in seed funding from angel investors.Established earlier this year, the company seeks to improve cross-border financial transactions for businesses.It has developed two solutions using technologies such as blockchain, AI, big data analysis, and social innovation.One of its solutions is PezzaPay, a peer-to-peer cross-border payment service, which users in the Philippines can use to make payments to Japan and China in a more cost-efficient manner.The company claims that the service has achieved US$60,000 in gross merchandise volume in one month of operation, expecting the number to increase to US$8 million by July 2020.PezzaLoan, on the other hand, is GDP’s P2P financing platform that connects SMEs to investors willing to lend directly to businesses.
Sprout, a payroll and human resources platform from Manila, has raised a US$6 million series A round, led by New York-based Point72 Ventures, the early-stage VC firm of American billionaire Steve Cohen.The deal marks Point72’s first foray into Southeast Asia.New participating investors include Next Billion Ventures out of New York, Dymon Asia out of Singapore, and Endeavor Catalyst, the investment vehicle of Endeavor, an organization that supports entrepreneurs with potentially high social impact.Existing investors Kickstart, Beenext, and Wavemaker Partners returned for this fresh round, signaling growing confidence in the startup.Sprout was founded by husband-and-wife duo Patrick and Alex Gentry in 2015 to solve a royal pain point for businesses operating under the Philippines’ complex labor laws.In the Philippines, businesses are required to file employee taxes, social security contributions, as well as corresponding reports.
Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal is planning to launch a venture capital fund with a target size of US$300 million to US$400 million to focus on startups needing growth capital, two sources familiar with the matter told The Times of India.According to the report, Bansal looks to base the fund out of Singapore and roll it out by the end of 2019.Its focus would primarily be startups in India, but founders in Southeast Asia may also be considered.Bansal will act as a general partner of the fund and is likely to make investments accounting for 10% to 20% of its target size, a source said, adding that Bansal will start roping in other investors soon.Other possible anchor investors could include fund of funds and family offices, the source said.Another former Flipkart executive, Rajneesh Baweja, has also been tapped to handle the entity’s finance and legal functions, the report said.
It’s tough to be a footwear brand these days.Creating products that help people look and feel good is one thing, but consumers, especially millennials and Generation Z, are increasingly drawn to brands that are “woke.” According to the 2018 Millennials Pulse Report by marketing communications firm Shelton Group, 90% of millennials favor labels that respect social and environmental causes.But ticking all these boxes is rare, at least according to David Python, CEO and co-founder of Cariuma, a Brazillian brand of sneakers based out of Singapore.“A good-looking pair of shoes that’s super comfortable and also done in a conscious way – there are no shoe brands with all three, even if you look at the big brands,” he contends.Python would know: During his stint as the chief commercial officer for São Paulo-headquartered shoemaker Arezzo, he was responsible for selling 12 million pairs of footwear annually.Taking up the challenge, Python and his co-founder Fernando Porto started a label aimed at satisfying all of the above.
Malaysian payment service provider GHL Systems has partnered Grab Malaysia to enable GrabPay mobile QR payments at its merchant payment touchpoints.Through the partnership, GrabPay will have access to GHL’s 70,000 merchant payment touchpoints in the country.GHL will also add the digital wallet’s payment channel to its existing credit and debit card offerings as well as cross-border and local e-wallets.Grab launched its digital wallet services in Malaysia in May 2018 through a partnership with Maybank.It’s GrabPay’s first expansion out of Singapore.GrabPay is also available in Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines.
When oBike abruptly announced that it was pulling out of Singapore in June this year, it pointed the finger at the country’s evolving regulatory framework for bike-sharing services.At the time, oBike said it did not expect to “fulfill the new requirements and guidelines released by LTA [Singapore’s Land Transport Authority] towards dockless bicycle sharing.”The Singapore parliament passed a law in May directing the LTA to develop more stringent rules for bike-sharing apps and their users.
But despite all the manpower and machinery, a mere 30 percent of warehouses in the U.S. are operating efficiently, according to a study by the Georgia Institute of Technology.The robotics systems company, which is registered out of Singapore, today announced a $140 million funding round led by Mithril Capital, with participation from existing investors including Blume Ventures.Ajay Royan, who cofounded Mithril Capital with Peter Thiel, will join the startup’s board.Cofounder and CEO Samay Kohli said the funds would be used to grow its international supply chain and R division, which includes a planned center in Boston, Massachusetts.In August, GreyOrange announced plans to establish a headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia; hire 50 new employees; and deploy 740 robots ahead of construction of a manufacturing plant in the U.S.“GreyOrange offers robotics technology for operating flexible automated warehouses and has the largest market share globally in this space.
Robots are well-suited to the sort of simple, monotonous tasks that suck up hours of factory workers’ time and attention.That’s why the market for intelligent machines designed to work alongside humans is forecast to be worth $3.1 billion by 2020, and why companies like Foxconn, Apple’s manufacturing partner, have already deployed tens of thousands of them in assembly plants overseas.The robotics systems company, which is registered out of Singapore, today announced that it plans to establish a headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, where it’ll hire 50 new employees and deploy 740 robots ahead of the construction of a local manufacturing facility in the U.S. It’ll also open a research and development center in Boston, Massachusetts to “further expand its technology development capability,” and in the next three years intends to deploy an additional 20,000 robots in factories across the country.“GreyOrange is the world’s largest supply chain robotics company and the global leader of robotics technology for operating flexibly automated warehouses,” Samay Kohli, CEO and cofounder of GreyOrange, said in a statement.“With our expansion into the United States … we will transform warehouse processes and efficiency and enhance employee engagement and retention, bringing it on par with tech jobs.”One robot in its fleet is the Butler PickPal, a logistics center bot the company announced in March.
When Obike first arrived in Singapore -- along with other bike-sharing operators -- I tried it and recorded our breakup in this heartwrenching post.Fast-forward a year later, it's leaving Singapore -- and taking my money with it.Singapore-based Obike announced it's pulling out of Singapore in a Facebook post that caught its users by surprise on Sunday, saying its decision was driven by "difficulties foreseen" as a result of new laws by the city-state's Land Transport Authority (LTA).In March, the LTA passed new laws requiring bike-sharing operators to obtain a licence designed to control their fleet sizes.This included new fees and a three-strike policy that temporarily bars repeat offenders from using shared bikes if they park their bike in an unregistered public space.Bike operators were given until July 7 to apply for a licence, failing which they will have to shut down operations.
Grab is bringing its GrabPay digital wallet to Malaysia, it announced today.It’s the first expansion out of Singapore for Grab’s all-purpose cashless payments platform.To make it happen, Grab has partnered with Maybank, Malaysia’s largest bank by total assets (US$164.1 billion) and market capitalization (US$20.7 billion).Customers will be able to use the digital wallet at GrabPay’s partner merchants first, and eventually within Maybank’s network of merchants as well.They will also be able to top it up through Maybank’s online banking service.At the same time, Maybank users will be able to use their bank’s QR-code payment system at GrabPay merchants.
Facebook has appointed former ESPN South East Asia boss Joyee Biswas as Asia Pacific's sports partnership head.Biswas, in his new role, will oversee Facebook’s partnerships with APAC-based leagues, teams, athletes and sports media and will be based out of Singapore.Prior to this, Biswas held senior roles at Eleven Sports Network and Singtel.Biswas, in a Facebook post, said: “I am delighted to share that I will be soon starting at Facebook as the head of APAC Sports Partnerships.In this role I will manage partnerships with APAC-based leagues, teams, athletes and sports media across all Facebook-owned platforms.“Facebook provides a new-age experience in bringing compelling content and storytelling to the sports community.
Uber's retreat from the global ridesharing business continued on Monday as the company announced it was selling its southeast Asian business to Singapore-based rival Grab.The deal gives Uber a 27.5 percent stake in Grab and gets its CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, a seat on Grab's board of directors.Uber is pulling out of Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar, and Cambodia.According to Bloomberg, this represents a region of 620 million people.The deal includes the operation of UberEats.Bloomberg also notes that the deal was brokered by the Japanese firm Softbank, which is the biggest shareholder in both companies.
Luno, a bitcoin wallet and exchange based out of Singapore, is riding the crypto wave into Europe after it closed a $9 million Series B round for market expansion.The funding was led by new investor Balderton Capital, with participation from existing backer Digital Currency Group.South Africa’s AlphaCode — also a new arrival on the cap table — joined the deal which takes Luno, which was formerly called BitX, to $13.8 million raised to date.Major league investor Naspers, another that hails from South Africa, led a $4 million investment in June 2015.The products these backers are throwing their weight behind include a bitcoin wallet for storing crypto currencies, an exchange for buying them and merchant services that enable banks and retailers to work with bitcoin.In South Africa, in particular, Luno has worked with the likes of Pick N Pay while it was among the first batch let into the FCA’s Regulatory Sandbox in London last year.
Magic Leap, the controversial mixed reality start-up whose teaser videos look nothing short of amazing, may finally be shipping soon.Sources familiar with the matter tell Bloomberg that Magic Leap is hoping to ship its debut product to a small group of users within the next six months.The headset will reportedly sell for between $1,500 and $2,000 although the target price point could change, they added.In the interim, the company is reportedly looking to add to the more than $1.3 billion in funding it has already brought in.Sources tell the publication that Temasek Holdings Pte., an investment company out of Singapore, is considering taking part in a new round of funding of more than $500 million at a valuation of nearly $6 billion.The last funding round valued the start-up at $4.5 billion.
It’s a nightmare scenario straight out of a primetime drama: a child-seeking couple visits a fertility clinic to try their luck with in-vitro fertilisation, only to wind up accidentally impregnated by the wrong sperm.In a fascinating legal case out of Singapore, the country’s Supreme Court ruled that this situation doesn’t just constitute medical malpractice.The fertility clinic, the court recently ruled, must pay the parents 30% of upkeep costs for the child for a loss of ‘genetic affinity’.This can take you in all sort of fucked up directions.”In the court case in question, the couple underwent a successful IVF procedure at Thomson Medical Centre in Singapore and gave birth to a healthy baby girl in 2010.Soon, though, the couple suspected something was amiss.
It’s a nightmare scenario straight out of a primetime drama: a child-seeking couple visits a fertility clinic to try their luck with in-vitro fertilization, only to wind up accidentally impregnated by the wrong sperm.In a fascinating legal case out of Singapore, the country’s Supreme Court ruled that this situation doesn’t just constitute medical malpractice.The fertility clinic, the court recently ruled, must pay the parents 30% of upkeep costs for the child for a loss of ‘genetic affinity.’ In other words, the clinic must pay the parents’ child support not only because they made a terrible medical mistake, but because the child didn’t wind up with the right genes.This can take you in all sort of fucked up directions.”In the court case in question, the couple underwent a successful IVF procedure at Thomson Medical Centre in Singapore and gave birth to a healthy baby girl in 2010.Soon, though, the couple suspected something was amiss.
Carousell, a four-year-old startup from Singapore behind a listings app that enables peer-to-peer selling in Southeast Asia, has closed a $35 million Series B round to grow its reach into new countries and increase product development.The company is seen as one of the darlings of Singapore s nascent startup ecosystem, given that founding trio Lucas Ngoo, Marcus Tan and Quek Siu Rui all graduated NUS National University of Singapore while in their early twenties having spent some time in regular jobs.Added to that, this is certainly one of the more notable largest Series B rounds for a startup out of Singapore.The financing was led by existing investor Rakuten Ventures, with participation from returning backers Sequoia via its India fund which is used for Southeast Asia deals , Golden Gate Ventures and 500 Startups.Indeed, TechCrunch last December reported that Carousell was trying to raise as much as $50 million from investors for this round.The company declined to comment then and, this time around, all Siu Rui would say of that report is that Carousell is super grateful and happy that we have the support of our existing investors.