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The Monday Roundup: what we are watching this week | January 22nd

By Puja Sharma

January 22, 2024

  • BNPL
  • CDBC
  • Digital Bank

MondayThe Monday Roundup sets the scene for the week’s biggest news stories, industry deals, and upcoming events. For Prime subscribers only.

A new-age, digital-first bank

Money bagVisa, a world leader in digital payments, has completed its acquisition of Pismo – a global cloud-native issuer processing and core banking platform.

“Core banking and issuer processor capabilities are key offerings for many of our financial institution and fintech partners’ clients,” said Jack Forestell, Chief Product and Strategy Officer at Visa. “With the combination of Visa and Pismo, we can now broaden these offerings and better serve the ecosystem.”

With the transaction complete, the combination of Visa and Pismo will provide clients with core banking and card-issuer processing capabilities across all product types via cloud native APIs. Pismo’s platform will also enable Visa to provide support and connectivity for emerging payment schemes and RTP networks for financial institution clients.

BankUncia Technologies has announced the introduction of Uncia Chain, its Supply Chain Finance platform, at Unity Small Finance Bank (Unity Bank), a new-age, digital-first bank.

Uncia Technologies is a pure-play SaaS product company in the digital lending space, and its digital loan origination, loan management, and supply chain finance platforms enable efficient processing and accurate daily lending transactions across banks and NBFCs in India.

Uncia Chain, its Supply Chain Finance (SCF) platform, is designed to provide a hassle-free implementation journey for its customers. It offers a feature-rich product suite that houses all the business constructs that the physical supply chain industry looks up to for its financing needs.

Local Payment hero

Billink, the Netherlands-based Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) solution, has raised €29.5 million from the German Varengold Bank. The payment provider will use the funding to expand its offering to the largest Benelux web shops, enter the German market, and make buying online fairer, for both consumers and web shops.

Billink is a payment solution where payment is only made after shoppers receive purchases. Since its first BNPL transaction in 2012, Billink has amassed 3 million users and over 3,000 web shops now offer its payment service. The scale-up has also gained ground in the business market, where 20% companies of companies registered in the Dutch Chamber of Commerce have made at least one payment using the solution.

“We differentiate ourselves by being a ‘local hero’,” said Frank Waagmeester, CEO of Billink. “We have been active in the payment market in the Benelux for over a decade and understand the challenges of our webshop owners. We see this reflected in, among other things, a high customer retention and satisfaction score and a 4.7 Trustpilot rating, the highest in the market. With this great foundation, we are ready to take the next step.”

Vertice, the integrated SaaS, and cloud spend management platform, has announced a $25 million Series B following a year of revenue growth. The company has now raised a total of $51 million since January 2022, upping its valuation into the hundreds of millions. Vertice will use the capital to further fuel its pace of product innovation and accelerate its worldwide expansion.

83North and Bessemer Venture Partners, the lead investors in the company’s Series A, have returned with $25 million in additional funding. Vertice’s growth has been achieved with tremendous capital efficiency. This latest funding round increases its total available cash reserves to $40 million.

What is the buzz

CoinGovernor Shaktikanta Das said the RBI is not rushing to implement Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) at full scale because it wants to ensure its safety, integrity, and efficiency.

The RBI introduced its CBDC in phases during FY23, with the launch of pilots for Digital Rupee in the wholesale and retail segments on November 1, 2022 and December 1, 2022, respectively.

CBDC’s success, learning, and fine-tuning will determine the success of the countrywide launch. So, that is the distance which we have to cover. But we have no target date for implementation. We are also in no undue hurry or rush to implement it full scale because after all it is a currency – its safety, integrity and efficiency has to be ensured. In an interaction at the World Economic Forum Annual Meetings in Davos, Das said, “We want to make it truly robust.”

Under the CBDC pilot, on the retail side, there are now 4 million users and there are 0.40 million merchants who have also been onboarded.



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