Fintechnews Switzerland

Fintechnews Switzerland

Fintech News Switzerland provides a source of timely, deep insights and the latest local and global news about Fintech. Launched in 2014, the Fintech News Network team works very hard to deliver fintech-centric content in various forms to an audience looking for updates on fintech events and webinars, stunning opinions from highly-reputable digital finance innovators, analysis on fintech applications from active insiders, breaking news on fintech topics and fintech market alerts.

Articles by Fintechnews Switzerland

EIB and Goldman Sachs Issue First Euro-Denominated Digital Bond on a Private Blockchain

The European Investment Bank (EIB) — in collaboration with Goldman Sachs Bank Europe, Santander and Société Générale — launched Project Venus, their second euro-denominated digitally native bond issue and first using private blockchain technology.
The €100 million, two-year bond was issued, recorded and settled using private blockchain-based technology, and represents the inaugural issuance on Goldman Sachs’ tokenisation platform – GS DAPTM.
Banque de France and the Banque centrale du Luxembourg took part in the project to provide a digital representation of euro central bank money in the form of tokens. Société Générale Security Securities Services (SGSS Luxembourg) and Goldman Sachs Bank Europe SE acted respectively as on-chain custodian and account keeper.
Project Venus consists of the

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The State of the German Blockchain Ecosystem

Despite a global venture capital (VC) pullback, shrinking valuations and public market turmoil, Germany’s blockchain VC funding market remained stable this year, with companies in the space securing a total of US$218 million across 20 deals year-to-date (YTD), just US$37 million short of 2021’s US$255 million, a new report by CV VC, a Swiss VC and private equity firm specialized in cryptocurrency and blockchain solutions, shows.

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A.P. Moller – Maersk and IBM to Discontinue Blockchain Trade Platform Tradelens

A.P. Moller – Maersk  and IBM announced the decision to withdraw the TradeLens offerings and discontinue the platform.
Starting immediately, the TradeLens team is taking action to withdraw the offerings and discontinue the platform, and the intent is that the platform will go offline by end of quarter one, 2023. During this process all parties involved will ensure that customers are attended to without disruptions to their businesses.
Maersk will continue its efforts to digitise the supply chain and increase industry innovation through other solutions to reduce trade friction and promote more global trade.

“We are deeply grateful for the relentless efforts of our committed industry members and many tech talents, who together have worked diligently to advance the digitalisation of the

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Crypto Winter Wipes Out 72,000 Bitcoin Millionaires in 2022

Crypto comparison website Bitstacker conducted a study which found that there was a 70% drop in Bitcoin millionaires in November 2022 when compared to January 2022 due to the ongoing ‘crypto winter’.
72,000 Bitcoin holders were no longer millionaires due to the drop in BTC prices from US$46,208 at the start of 2022 to US$15,759 at the time of the study in November.

Bitstacker also found that there was some 3,577 accounts holding over US$10 million in Bitcoin, while there were over 34 million addresses that had at least US$1 in Bitcoin assets.
Furthermore, there are currently 10 Bitcoin billionaires in the world, with the richest ‘Bitcoin billionaire’ holding 252,597 BTC worth around US$4.05 billion — representing 1.31% of all BTC in existence.

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Bitpanda Receives Full Crypto Custody and Trading License in Germany

Austrian crypto platform Bitpanda has received a full operating license from the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority or BaFin for the custody and proprietary trading of crypto assets.
Bitpanda claims to be the first European retail investment platform to obtain the license which was introduced by BaFin in 2020, allowing it to actively market and offer services in the German market.
Founded in 2014, Bitpanda now has nearly four million investors on its platform.

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Total Funding to Portuguese Fintech Companies Surpasses EUR 1B Mark

In 2022, the Portuguese fintech ecosystem entered a new stage of development, marked by greater maturity of the sector, continued innovation through partnerships and a dynamic venture capital (VC) market, a new report by industry trade group Portugal Fintech, in collaboration with KPMG, Visa and law firm Morais Leitao, claims.
The Portugal Fintech Report 2022, released in October, shows a resilient fintech industry that has continued to grow, innovate and attract investors’ interest in 2022, despite falling tech stocks and concerns about an economic downturn.
This year, total funding to Portuguese fintech companies to date surpassed the EUR 1 billion mark, with blockchain and cryptocurrency, lending and credit, and regtech and cybersecurity attracting the most funding. These segments

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BlackRock’s Fintech Bets Span Lending, Wealthtech, Crypto and More

BlackRock, one of the world’s largest asset managers, has been actively investing in the fintech industry over the past decade, participating in large rounds of financing across a broad range of segments, from payments and lending, to wealthtech and cryptocurrency, a new analysis by fintech-focused research firm WhiteSight shows.

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Swissquote Clients Can Now Invest in Dubai Financial Market’s Securities

Online trading platform Swissquote is now connected to the Dubai Financial Market (DFM), allowing clients to invest in and trade DFM-listed securities.
The platform is connected to the DFM through GTN Middle East and BHM Capital Financial Services’ direct market access route, and is expected to boost DFM-listed securities’ accessibility to investors outside the UAE.
Swissquote is a provider of online financial services granting its clients access to trade a range of asset classes including stocks, ETFs, funds, bonds, derivatives and more.

The company launched a cryptocurrency exchange called SQX earlier this month and previously partnered with Postfinance to launch digital banking app Yuh in mid-2021.

“Given our local and international client base, providing direct access to the growing

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neon’s Crowdfunding Campaign Reaches CHF 5 Million on Its First Day

Swiss neobank neon’s crowdfunding campaign reached CHF 5 million of its CHF 10 million target with more than 2,000 investors participating on the first day of the campaign.
The campaign, which runs from October 25 to 31, is offering two to 250 non-voting shares priced at CHF 200.00 per share. The company aims to sell a total of 50,000 shares.
According to the campaign page, neon’s recent milestones include hitting 130,000 users, generating CHF 3.5 million in revenue year to date, and launching new card and community features.

The company says that it expects to reach CHF 6 million in sales by the end of the year, and that it plans to move into stock and cryptocurrency trading next.
neon shared that it also raised CHF 2.5 million in funding from institutional investors in September.
The

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N26 Launches New Cryptocurrency Trading Feature With Bitpanda

German neobank N26 has launched its cryptocurrency product in Austria to enable customers to buy and sell 194 cryptocurrencies in their app.
The N26 Crypto feature will be made available progressively to eligible customers in Austria over the coming weeks, as well as in other key markets over the next six months.
The launch addresses strong local demand, where internal research showed that 40% of N26 users are either actively trading, or have expressed interest in investing in cryptocurrencies.

N26 Crypto is offered in partnership with Austrian cryptocurrency platform Bitpanda, which manages the execution of trades and custody of coins.
N26 Metal customers will be able to make transactions with a 1% transaction fee applied for trading Bitcoin and 2% for all other available

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Wealth Managers Reluctant to Invest in Crypto

Wealth managers around the world are still reluctant to invest in cryptocurrency on behalf of their clients amid concerns over the lack of regulation, the lack of education as well as high volatility, a new study by American asset management company Mercer found.

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Relai Partners Checkout.com to Enable Instant Bitcoin Purchases

Swiss Bitcoin investment app Relai has partnered with global payments provider Checkout.com to enable its users to buy the cryptocurrency via Visa, Mastercard and Apple Pay in real time through its self-custodial wallet.
The partnership with Checkout.com is expected to allow users to have constant access to instant liquidity while also ensuring that they have full say over what happens to their assets.
Founded in 2020, Relai currently serves over 40 countries in Europe, has over 100,000 app downloads, 30,000 active users, and CHF 6 million in monthly volume.

The startup last raised a CHF 2.5 million Series A round in mid-2021 and recently made the TOP 100 Swiss Startup Awards 2022.
Checkout.com is a London-based payments solutions provider with a US$40 billion valuation. The company

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Swissquote Dives Into Cryptocurrency Trading With the Launch of SQX

Online trading platform Swissquote has launched a cryptocurrency exchange called SQX that aims to provide a more competitive and secure trading environment.
Unlike other crypto exchanges, SQX says that it prides itself on being a centralised trading platform as it believes that currency markets function on the back of long-standing bilateral relationships.
As such, Swissquote added that SQX’s new central order book, which sources and aggregates liquidity from different liquidity hubs, will allow it to source the best liquidity conditions from decentralised crypto markets — resulting in more competitive bid and ask prices.

The Bancor Network Token (BNT) will be available on SQX in the initial phase and other cryptocurrencies available at Swissquote will be added gradually. Clients will

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University of Zurich and ETH Zurich Among World’s Best Universities for Blockchain Education

The University of Zurich and ETH Zurich ranked third and 27th respectively on CoinDesk’s latest annual best universities for blockchain rankings.
The rankings were made from a shortlist of 240 institutions around the world, calculated based on their scholarly, industrial and pedagogical impact on blockchain.

Metrics that were taken into account included the institutions’ blockchain research publications, courses, degrees, conferences, clubs and industry partnerships or grants.

The rankings also took into account the institutions’ reputations, where their graduates get jobs, and other measurements from publicly available sources.
The University of Zurich moved up the rankings this year from fourth to third place, while ETH Zurich dropped from 10th place to 27th place.
The École

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Portofino Technologies Raises US$50M to Scale Its HFT Crypto Infrastructure

Digital asset trading technology provider Portofino Technologies has raised over US$50 million in equity funding from Valar Ventures, Global Founders Capital and Coatue to scale its technology across the full crypto infrastructure value chain.
The company, founded by former Citadel Securities executives Leonard Lancia and Alex Casimo, builds high-frequency trading (HFT) grade technology for institutions and Web3 projects that require digital asset liquidity.
Portofino says that it has traded billions of dollars across centralized and decentralized cryptocurrency venues and hired a team of 35 HFT specialists globally in the past year.

Leonard Lancia, CEO and Founder at Portofino said:
“This is only the start for Portofino. In Web3, every action is a transaction and we’re building the

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Press Communication in the Metaverse: Rent a PR Cooperates With Zreality

Access to the metaverse is complex and expensive, which is why it is so far used almost exclusively by large companies. The Zurich and Verbier-based PR agency Rent a PR, which has been providing on-demand public relations and communications consulting for five years and has been accepting Bitcoin payments since 2019, is setting another milestone with cooperation and press conferences in the metaverse.

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Financial Crimes in the Metaverse

Business executives are bullish on the prospect of the metaverse, predicting sizeable commercial opportunities in taking part in immersive virtual environments. But despite the high level of interest, industry stakeholders are also growing increasingly concerned over the possible risks brought about the concept.

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Hackers Tap Cross-Chain Bridges Vulnerabilities; Whopping US$2B Worth of Crypto Stolen

Hackers and cybercriminals are exploiting vulnerabilities found in cross-chain bridge protocols to siphon billions of dollars worth of cryptocurrencies out of wallets and smart contracts, a new report by blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis claims.
A total of 13 separate cross-chain bridge hacks have been recorded so far, netting criminals about US$2 billion, according to the firm. Most of these attacks took place this year, showing that the trend is proliferating and becoming a top security risk in the crypto industry.
Attacks on bridges account for 69% of total funds stolen in 2022 so far, totaling around U$1.4 billion, estimates Chainalysis. The biggest single event was the US$615 million haul snatched from the Ronin bridge in March 2022. Ronin is an Ethereum sidechain developed for

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Global Blockchain Funding Dip; Mega-Rounds Shrink

After a record year 2021, the venture capital (VC) market for blockchain investment is slowing down significantly in 2022 amid uncertain macroeconomic conditions and financial markets turmoil. In Q2 2022, VC investors scaled back cryptocurrency investments due to macroeconomic pressures, concerns about valuations and market volatility.

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Meta: Digital Collectibles to Showcase NFTs on Instagram

Starting this week on Instagram, Meta is testing digital collectibles with select US creators and collectors to share NFTs that they have created or bought. Meta/Instagram started with the international expansion to 100 countries in Africa, Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, and the Americas.

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Blackrock Ties up With Coinbase to Offer Its Clients Crypto Trading and Custody

Asset manager BlackRock has selected cryptocurrency exchange platform Coinbase to provide the institutional clients of Aladdin®, BlackRock’s end-to-end investment management platform, direct access to crypto starting with bitcoin.
Coinbase Prime will provide crypto trading, custody, prime brokerage, and reporting capabilities to Aladdin’s institutional client base who are also clients of Coinbase.

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Swiss Blockchain-Insurtech Jarowa Raises CHF 12.4 Million Series A for Europe Expansion

JAROWA is a Swiss digital marketplace and transaction platform for insurance companies, property managers, and leasing companies to manage their trusted service providers and digital orders more efficiently. JAROWA has successfully closed its Series A funding round, led by Eos Venture Partners, a strategic venture capital fund focused on InsurTech. The proceeds will be used to further expand JAROWA’s offering throughout Europe.

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A Look at Switzerland’s Booming Digital Asset Ecosystem

In recent years, Switzerland’s blockchain and digital asset ecosystem has matured rapidly and grown into one of the world’s leading blockchain hubs, a position that’s asserted by its expanding workforce and a rising number of foreign companies setting up operations locally.

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Swiss and Singapore Regulators Unveil Inaugural Point Zero Forum

The Swiss Secretariat for International Finance (SIF) and Elevandi announced the programme and speaker line-up for the inaugural Point Zero Forum, taking place on 21-23 June in Zurich, Switzerland. Elevandi is a Company Limited by Guarantee (GLC) created by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to manage the Singapore Fintech Festival (SFF).

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Social Media Financial Scams Balloon

Around the world, fraudsters are turning to social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram to reach billions of potential victims. As losses continue to pile up, regulators are voicing their concerns, with one going as far as suing a social media giant for not taking sufficient steps to tackle the rampant issue.

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Global Blockchain Sector Surged in 2021

2021 was a blockbuster year for the global blockchain sector, which saw funding activity surge, trading volumes balloon and further growth in key segments including custodians, exchanges, decentralized finance (DeFi), as well as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and the metaverse, a new report by Swiss blockchain-focused investment company CV VC, in collaboration with PwC Switzerland, says.

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Top 20+ Upcoming Fintech Events to Attend in Europe

Technological advances and evolving customer expectations are changing the financial landscape, stimulating fintech development and innovation. To keep up with the burgeoning fintech industry, top-quality fintech events are being organized on a regular basis to educate attendees on the latest trends and enable professionals to build meaningful connections.

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Swiss Blockchain Startup Wecan Chooses France for Its Expansion

Wecan Group SA, a Swiss Blockchain software provider used  Swiss private banks, is favoring an expansion in France for its internationalization. Behind this choice: an investment from Michel Reybier, owner of La Réserve hotels, and a selection in the Swave program, an initiative of the French government to attract the most promising fintechs in France.

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Google Cloud Meets Digital Assets and Crypto Payments

Blockchain technology is yielding tremendous innovation and value creation for consumers and businesses around the world. As the technology becomes more mainstream, companies need scalable, secure, and sustainable infrastructure on which to grow their businesses and support their networks. Google Cloud believes it can play an important role in this evolution.
Building on their existing work with blockchain developers, exchanges, and other companies in this space, Google Cloud announced a new dedicated Digital Assets Team within Google Cloud to support our customers’ needs in building, transacting, storing value, and deploying new products on blockchain-based platforms. This new team will enable our customers to accelerate their efforts in this emerging space and help underpin the

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The Top 8 Crypto Custodians

As investors increasingly incorporate digital assets into their portfolios, the crypto custody landscape continues to grow and mature. As of late-2021, around US$230 billion worth of digital assets, or about 9% of the total US$2.5 trillion cryptocurrency market, were being stored on the technology solutions of eight crypto custodians, separate research by The Block Research and Blockdata found.

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BBVA Switzerland Adds Ether to Its Crypto Trading Service

BBVA Switzerland, the Swiss franchise of Spanish multinational financial institution BBVA, has expanded its cryptocurrency custody and trading service with the addition of Ether to its investment portfolio.
Its private banking clients and new gen customers will now have access to both Bitcoin and Ether, a statement from the company said.

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German Regulator BaFin Grants Third Crypto Custody License to Tangany

Tangany has received a license from the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) as the third regulated service provider for the custody of digital assets in the country to provide crypto custody business. Furthermore, Tangany plans to apply for further licenses in Germany and Europe in the future and has already received preliminary permission from BaFin to manage registers of crypto securities.

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Coinbase to Invest US$500 Million Into Crypto Assets

American cryptocurrency exchange platform Coinbase announced that it has committed to invest US$500 million of its cash and cash equivalents into a diverse portfolio of crypto assets. Coinbase added that going forward, it will also allocate 10% of quarterly net income into this same portfolio.

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MoneyLion to Offer Crypto Investment Ahead of SPAC Merger

US-based neobank MoneyLion announced the launch of its new cryptocurrency capabilities, enabling customers to buy and sell digital currencies within its app. MoneyLion said that eligible customers will initially be able to buy and sell Bitcoin and Ethereum, as well as round-up their debit card purchases in Bitcoin.

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Blockchain-Based Invoice Factoring Firm Hiveterminal Expands to DACH Region

Blockchain-based invoice factoring platform Hiveterminal announced that it has expanded to the DACH region as part of its Europe growth plans. Hiveterminal aims to start cultivating relationships with Swiss-based small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) who need fast and continuous access to liquidity without going through the hassle of applying for bank financing.

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Facebook Pay To Be Available to Online Retailers Starting With Shopify

With digital payments picking up pace across the globe, social media giant Facebook is extending its payment services to online retailers. Shopify has become the first e-commerce platform to sign up for Facebook Pay. This will allow Shopify merchants to offer Facebook Pay as a payment option during checkout, eliminating the need to re-enter payment information for every transaction.

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56 Fintech Billionaires Worth a Combined US$327B in 2021

There are 56 fintech billionaires around the world who combine a total net worth of US$327.7 billion, data curated by Finextra based on Forbes’ 2021 World’s Billionaires list show. These represent some of the world’s biggest and most successful fintech companies in the world including Ant Group, PayPal, Stripe and Klarna.

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PayPal Allows American Customers to Use Cryptocurrencies for Purchases

PayPal announced the launch of Checkout with Crypto, where US customers will be able to choose to check out with crypto seamlessly. Building on the ability to buy, hold and sell cryptocurrency with PayPal, customers using Checkout with Crypto can check out safely and easily, converting cryptocurrency holdings to fiat currency, with certainty of value and no additional transaction fees.

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Austrian Crypto Broker Bitpanda Secures Unicorn Status With $170 Million Funding

Bitpanda, an Austrian digital investment platform dealing with cryptocurrency, announced that it has closed it Series B funding round with an investment of $170 million and attained unicorn status with a valuation of $1.2 billion.
The funding round was led by Valar Ventures with participation from partners of DST Global. Bitpanda had also previously secured $52 million during its Series A from Valar Ventures.
The Series B was signed last week and is currently in the necessary approval process of the Austrian Financial Market Authority (FMA).
Bitpanda said in a blog post that it would be using the new funding to expand its team which currently has 350 staff members to around 600.
The company has already expanded into France, Spain, Turkey, Italy and Poland in 2020 and will enter additional

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Switzerland’s Blockchain Fintech Industry in 2021

Switzerland is home to 130 startups that are applying blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) to finance use cases, new data from Swisscom show. Most of these companies (48%) operate in the banking infrastructure vertical, followed by investment management (24%), and payments (21%).

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