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Weekly News Highlights – 8 July 2021

For this news article, we have further explored the fintech ecosystem and discovered the latest happenings regarding IPOs, banking, ESG, digital currencies, digital verification, data privacy, M&A, fintech partnerships, and more. Dive into the updates and enjoy the materials!

Wise completes largest direct listing in UK history at £8bn (Finextra)

Wise, a fintech company that allows people to send money overseas, goes public on the London Stock Exchange, with first trades expected to commence shortly after 11:22am BST under the ticker ‘WISE’. The move was confirmed by the money transfer firm itself in June, and is expected to be a test for the post-Brexit London market. Read more

Booking.com creates fintech unit (Finextra)

Booking.com, a Dutch online travel agency, announced the creation of a new internal FinTech business unit to facilitate seamless access to the company’s global travel marketplace for both customers and partners. Booking.com’s vision behind creating this new business unit is to further remove financial friction from the travel process, making buying and selling travel-related products and services truly easier for everyone. Read more

UK Bank Barclays Blocks Payments to Binance (Coindesk)

U.K. bank Barclays that it is blocking customers from using their debit and credit cards to make payments to crypto exchange Binance. The decision follows shortly after the U.K. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) announced that Binance was not allowed to conduct any regulated activities in the country. Regulators in other markets including Japan and Canada have offered similar warnings in recent weeks, with one in Thailand even threatening criminal charges. Read more

Tomorrow added new carbon footprint feature (FSTech)

Tomorrow, a tech company that builds environmentally-driven data, has introduced a new feature within its banking app that shows customers carbon emission calculations alongside bank transactions. The data will be based on each purchase made with a Visa card. Tomorrow is the first bank in Germany to integrate ecolytiq’s sustainability tech into its platform. Read more

Russian banks to pilot digital ruble (Finextra)

The central bank of Russia is to begin pilot testing a digital ruble platform with 12 of the nation’s banks. The central bank says it intends to finish development of the digital ruble prototype in December and commence testing in January 2022. The digital ruble project is aimed to create new payment infrastructure to improve the availability of payments and transfers and to reduce their cost for households and businesses. Read more

Klarna faces data privacy investigation in Sweden (Finextra)

Sweden’s financial watchdog is investigating whether buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) fintech Klarna violated bank secrecy laws following a security breach in May. The Finansinspektionen (FI) announced the probe following the May 27 incident where users were able to access information on other customers for a limited time. Read more

Clear acquires B2B payments startup yBanq to expand services (KrAsia)

Indian fintech company Clear, which helps enterprises and individuals file their income tax returns, has acquired yBanq, a B2B payment startup for an undisclosed amount of money. This acquisition will help Clear connect its customers with vendors, potential clients, distributors, and accountants on a single platform. The company claims to have processed 10% of business invoices in the country worth more than USD 300 billion and hopes to accelerate the process through yBanq. Read more

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