The latest news from the world of Alternative Finance and FinTech
In the news this week
GoCompare, the UK price comparison site, has revealed that it is opening up its API to FinTech firms. The Machine Learning for FinTech project will give free access to APIs focused on transaction categorisation, merchant identification and insight on predicted spending. Firms can apply for beta access now. Elsewhere, PensionBee, a FinTech pension platform, has hit out against pension provider Aegon, accusing the “corporate bully” of slowing down the process of moving pension pots to its platform.
GoCompare opens up APIs to FinTech firms
UK price comparison site GoCompare is opening up its APIs to FinTech firms, letting them pump in anonymised transaction data for analysis. The Machine Learning for FinTech project will give free access to APIs focused on transaction categorisation, merchant identification and insight on predicted spending. (Finextra)
FinTech PensionBee hits out at “corporate bully” Aegon
PensionBee, a FinTech pension platform, has said auto enrolment is failing as pension provider Aegon is delaying customers switching to new providers. In an open letter - seen by AltFi and dated 31 January - addressed to Aegon’s CEO Adrian Grace, PensionBee’s CEO Romi Savova says for the past eight months Aegon has blocked hundreds of... (AltFi)
A FinTech M&A bonanza drove deal value to its highest level last year
The UK helped to drive a record six months of FinTech mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in the second half of last year, as the global deal total hit a new high of $29.35bn (£20.7bn). The announced acquisition of the UK's Worldpay, by US firm Vantiv, was the largest over the period accounting for a massive $10.43bn. (City A.M.)
This FinTech startup just launched a current account for the self-employed
A new FinTech startup has joined the scene and is the latest looking to take on the traditional high street banks by launching a current account, but with a twist. Coconut is aimed squarely at freelancers, consultants and the self-employed, promising to help them keep on top of their finances with innovative features. (City A.M.)
London FinTech start-up Duco raises £20m
A London-based developer of software used by banks and hedge funds has raised $28m (£19.8m) from two early backers of tech giant Alibaba and Michael Spencer’s Nex Group. (The Times)
Zopa investor seeks public listing for new FinTech fund
Zopa stakeholder Augmentum Capital is planning to list a new FinTech fund on the London Stock Exchange that invests in disruptive, high growth companies. Augmentum FinTech, a closed-ended investment company, will acquire an initial portfolio of five FinTech investments from Augmentum Capital, with an aggregate valuation of around £33m. (P2P Finance News)
UK government invites applications for trade mission to New York FinTech Week
The UK government is calling on local FinTech firms to join a trade mission to New York FinTech Week in April. Firms - particularly those actively entering the US market or with American clients - are being invited to apply for a place on the mission by 16 February. (Finextra)
Growth Street pledges funds for growing Welsh SMEs
Peer-to-peer business lender Growth Street has pledged to inject £20m into Welsh businesses over the next 12 months. The platform is targeting key sectors of the UK such as manufacturing, wholesale and professional services as well as regions where it believes small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are underserved. (P2P Finance News)
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