In this edition:
Fintech is driving Saudi Arabia toward a cashless society
UK banks finance green homes via BTL fintech
No more cohorts: FCA says fintech sandbox is now ‘always open’
Chinese tech entrepreneurs grow wary of foreign funding
Cryptocurrency exchanges target sport sponsorships
Fintech is driving Saudi Arabia toward a cashless society.
In recent years, Saudi Arabia has witnessed an extraordinary movement toward the use of fintech, evidenced by the increased number of fintech companies licensed by the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA). Over the last two years, SAMA has licensed 13 fintech companies, and 32 companies are using its Regulatory Sandbox.
UK banks finance green homes via BTL fintech.
Barclays and HSBC have funnelled £150m into buy-to-let fintech lender Lendinvest to help landlords make property improvements, with a particular focus on bringing homes up to an energy performance certificate rating of C.
No more cohorts: FCA says fintech sandbox is now ‘always open’.
Since 2016 the UK’s financial regulator has operated a ‘sandbox’ for cutting-edge financial products and services to be tested with consumers in-market under its supervision.
Previously the Financial Conduct Authority had operated its sandbox by annual cohorts, allowing a set number of companies to participate at any one time, but no longer.
FCA Innovate has announced that its sandbox is now ‘always open’, meaning firms can apply anytime to test their products at whatever stage is right for them.
Chinese tech entrepreneurs grow wary of foreign funding.
Wu Xiao is turning down dollars. For the past three years, the Nanjing-based entrepreneur has only taken Chinese money for his blockchain start-up, and he intends to continue rejecting foreign investors.
He described his stance as a “strategic choice”. “If we are foreign-funded, then we might not be able to provide service to some domestic developers,” said Wu. “We may gain some opportunities, but also lose some.”
Cryptocurrency exchanges target sport sponsorships.
For more than a quarter of a century, the logo of Italian tyremaker Pirelli graced the shirts of reigning Serie A football champions Inter Milan. But this season, Inter’s black-and-blue-striped tops are going crypto.
Thank you for your time!