Manny Alvarez was appointed Commissioner of the California Department of Business Oversight; lawmakers introduced a proposed bill to regulate companies’ use of AI tools; Coinbase launched a debit card in the U.K. tied to users’ cryptocurrency accounts; WeLab became the fourth company to acquire an online-only banking license in Hong Kong; U.K. challenger bank Monzo raised $100M in Series F funding; and N26 faced regulatory scrutiny from German regulators over its handling of customer complaints.
Kik is expected to challenge the SEC over an ICO enforcement action; Coinbase rolled out crypto institutional services in Asia; Alipay was granted an EU e-money license; Bitcoin ATM startups reported growth; the EU and Japan finalized a data flow agreement; and IBM landed a $260m IT infrastructure deal with the Bank of the Philippine Islands.
The WSJ profiled the increasing use of “alternative data” to track people and their financial choices; the world marked the ten-year anniversary of the invention of bitcoin; the NAC revealed a scam involving California ATMs; Monzo achieved unicorn status after raising an additional £85M; Coinbase raised $300M in new funding and is now valued at $8B; and Quartz commemorated the tenth anniversary of the invention of bitcoin with an investigation into its mysterious creator, Satoshi Nakamoto.
The New York AG reported three crypto exchanges to the NYDFS; U.K. banks were hit with widespread outages; PNC joined Ripple Net; California prepared the first U.S. IoT security legislation; the U.K. parliament published a report calling for crypto regulation; and Fannie Mae’s GC joined Coinbase.
Fintechs are getting into subprime credit card lending; Tether is facing scrutiny about its cash reserves; Coinbase acquired blockchain identity startup Distributed Systems; the WEF reported on AI and financial services; and Monzo is close to $150M in new funding, which would value it at nearly $1.5 billion.
The CFPB has a new head of its Office of Innovation and is developing a regulatory sandbox; Coinbase received SEC and FINRA approval to offer tokenized securities on its platform; challenger bank Revolut reported suspected money laundering on its platform to U.K. authorities; Columbia University and IBM partnered on a new blockchain research center; and PayPal led a $50M investment round in merchant payments firm PPRO.