Fintech funding round-up: 8 June 2017
It felt like only yesterday (7 June) that we published a fintech funding round-up. In fact, we did. But this latest version features Kasikornbank, Lmrkts, International Finance Corporation and Entersekt.
Kasikornbank (Kbank), one of the largest banks in Thailand, has launched its “Beacon Venture Capital” investment unit with $30 million on hand to support start-ups and digital innovation.
Khattiya Indaravijaya, MD at Kbank, says – what we all know really – that consumer behaviour is pushing the demand for digital services. As reported last year, Kbank said it planned to spend THB 5 billion ($142 million) per year in a digital banking transformation project. Few can doubt that with this kind of money about (a-Baht?) the bank is serious in its intentions.
Who doesn’t enjoy special FX? International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has made an undisclosed equity investment in foreign exchange (FX) swaps firm Lmrkts to help it expand into emerging markets.
Founded in 2012, Lmrkts says it provides a compression service which helps commercial and investment banks reduce exposure to each other. The company balances participants’ counterparty limits and their risk management objectives with a “structured methodology”. After years of testing, it launched in late 2016, and has compressed over $2 trillion of notional equivalent in FX derivatives.
Over in South Africa, Rand Merchant Investment Holdings (RMI) through AlphaCode, RMI’s innovation hub, and Nedbank Private Equity through its private equity investment vehicle, BoE Private Equity Investments, have each acquired minority shareholdings in Entersekt in a “multi-million-dollar transaction”.
Entersekt develops push-based authentication and app security technology. The capital injection will be used to fund international expansion and research and development. All regulatory approvals have been obtained, including the Competition Commission of South Africa. Entersekt says it has already secured several banking clients including Absa, Nedbank, Capitec, Investec, Swisscard, Equity Bank, Ecobank, Pluscard and First Bank of Colorado.