Keep track of the latest financial technology innovations, including disruptor banks, expense management startups, and payment services.

The Golden Touch: Fintech Midas Raises $45M Series A in Turkey’s Thriving Equities Arena

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Midas, a fintech startup that allows people in Turkey to invest in U.S. and Turkish equities, says it has raised $45 million in a funding round led by Portage Ventures of Canada. The startup is aimed at Turkey’s retail investor market and claims to have more than 2 million users. That’s in a country of 80 million,” Egem Eraslan, CEO and founder of Midas, told TechCrunch. The company has plans to expand beyond Turkey, and aims to target countries in the MENA region. Globally, Portage invests in transformational financial technology and Midas is poised to lead that initiative in a region of early adopters.”

A Recap of Tesla’s Exciting Week and the Rise of Fintech

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It’s been more than a minute since Tesla went public, but the EV company was inescapable on TechCrunch this week. From layoffs to pricing changes and more, it was a week dyed deeply in Tesla colors so we had to chat through the latest. But that was just one element of what we got into on Equity this week. We also dug into Mary Ann’s reporting about Ramp’s latest round — and up valuation — that fit neatly next to Rippling’s own impending fundraise. Equity is back tomorrow with a special interview between Mary Ann and Notable Capital’s Hans Tung, so stay tuned!

CRED, a Fintech Company, Receives In-Principle Consent for Payment Aggregator License

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CRED has received the in-principle approval for payment aggregator license in a boost to the Indian fintech startup that could help it better serve its customers and launch new products and experiment with ideas faster. The RBI has granted in-principle approval for payment aggregator licenses to several companies, including Reliance Payment and Pine Labs, over the past year. Typically, the central bank takes nine months to a year to issue full approval following the in-principle approval. Without a license, fintech startups must rely on third-party payment processors to handle transactions, and these players may not prioritize such mandates. Obtaining a license allows fintech companies to process payments directly, reduce costs, gain greater control over payment flow, and onboard merchants directly.

How to Dominate Financial Fundamentals with Mercury’s Finance Vice President, Dan Kang, at TechCrunch Early Stage

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TechCrunch Early Stage is gearing up for another insightful event on April 25, and one roundtable session promises to be particularly illuminating for early-stage founders. Titled “Finance Fundamentals Before Your First Finance Hire: A Founder’s Guide to Navigating Early Financial Decisions,” this roundtable will offer invaluable insights into navigating the financial complexities that often accompany the early stages of startup ventures. Led by Dan Kang, the vice president of finance at Mercury, this roundtable aims to demystify the core aspects of early-stage financial management. With years of experience in building and scaling fintech companies, Kang brings a wealth of knowledge to the table. Secure your spot at TechCrunch Early Stage today to take advantage of this invaluable opportunity to learn from industry experts like Dan Kang.

“Angel Matchmaking: Cherub’s Innovative Platform for Investors and Founders to Connect and Thrive Together”

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Today they are the co-founders of Cherub, a marketplace that pairs angel investors with entrepreneurs. Johnson likens Los Angeles-based Cherub to Raya, an online membership-based community for dating, in that it matches founders and angel investors based on their preferences. Or if an entrepreneur’s minimum investment is $25,000 but an angel investor is only investing $10,000 per deal, they can see that and not reach out to connect. Of those deals, 40% were new angel investors, meaning they were accredited investors that had never written checks before. Angel investor Allen Orr told TechCrunch that he had used other platforms such as AngelList in the past.

Mercury, a Fintech Startup Facing Regulatory Scrutiny, Launches into the World of Consumer Banking

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Business banking startup Mercury, founded in 2020, is now launching a consumer banking product. “We already have a few hundred thousand users of our business banking product, and a lot of people have expressed that they want a personal banking product,” he told TechCrunch in an interview. The person also said the fintech partner banking market as a whole has been the target of more regulatory scrutiny. Crossing overBut success in B2B banking doesn’t automatically queue up Mercury to handle consumer banking. Sign up for TechCrunch Fintech here.

Exploring LemFi’s Fintech Vision for the Diaspora of the Global South

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Inside LemFi’s play to be fintech to the Global South diaspora First, the Nigerian startup focused on migrants from Africa. These events spotlight the company’s growing influence in Africa’s remittance market, fuelled by a $33 million Series A funding round and the launch of services in the U.S. corridor, both announced last August. LemFi later expanded to serve other African diaspora communities in the country before entering the U.K. market in 2021 by acquiring RightCard for $2.5 million. Additionally, Daiyaan Alam, formerly leading partnerships at Delivery Hero subsidiary Foodpanda in Pakistan, is spearheading LemFi’s expansion efforts into Pakistan and South Asia. They join Allen Qu, former COO at Chinese-backed African fintech OPay, who leads the fintech’s growth among the Chinese diaspora.

“Simple Payment Solutions for Smaller Merchants: Flatpay Raises $47M”

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In one of the latest developments, Danish company Flatpay, which builds payment solutions for small and medium physical merchants like shops, restaurants and salons, has raised €45 million ($47 million) led by Dawn Capital. Founded in 2022, Flatpay currently has just 7,000 customers across its current footprint of Denmark, Finland and Germany. Perhaps most interestingly, on the sales side, despite its focus on streamlined technology, Flatpay only sells via live sales visits. No online sales (although there are specialists who will help arrange those in-person sales visits and handle support), no virtual visits, and no plans to introduce either. And the only way they could understand the products really well was by the company paring down the products themselves.

“False Alarm or Real Threat? iMessage Bug Concerns Crypto Wallet Developer”

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A crypto wallet maker claimed this week that hackers may be targeting people with an iMessage “zero-day” exploit — but all signs point to an exaggerated threat, if not a downright scam. Trust Wallet’s official X (previously Twitter) account wrote that “we have credible intel regarding a high-risk zero-day exploit targeting iMessage on the Dark Web. According to Apple, there is no evidence anyone has successfully hacked someone’s Apple device while using Lockdown Mode. For its part, CodeBreach Lab appears to be a new website with no track record. TechCrunch could not reach CodeBreach Lab for comment because there is no way to contact the alleged company.

Maven Ventures Secures $60M for Fund IV, Proving Continued Enthusiasm for Consumer Tech Investing

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When prolific venture capital firms Andreessen Horowitz and Lerer Hippeau announced in early 2024 they were pivoting away from consumer tech, it sparked a social media debate about whether there are still opportunities. Jumping in, Maven will be there helping to build the next game-changing health AI company or robotics AI consumer business, he said. Scheinman started the firm in 2013 and brought in Deshpande soon after to focus on consumer AI and personalized medicine. They brought in investment partner Robert Ravanshenas in 2015, and again in 2020 after a stint in a startup operating role, to focus on fintech, longevity and consumer AI. Together the trio remains committed to seeding similar consumer tech trends, including applications of AI, personalized healthcare, climate and sustainability, family technology and fintech.