Kik is crowdfunding money to officially challenge the SEC’s ruling that its Kin token is subject to securities rules; IBM and Maersk expanded their successful blockchain-based TradeLens shipping consortium; Facebook’s GlobalCoin is reportedly set to launch in early 2020; the German Bundesbank was critical of blockchain following a test of its ability to facilitate securities transactions; TransferWise raised nearly $300M in new funding, giving it a $3.5B valuation; and Plaid expanded services to the U.K.
The Senate Banking Committee is seeking details from Facebook about its reported stablecoin project; the Binance crypto exchange was hacked, causing a loss of about $40M; Nordea launched its IBM-built we.trade blockchain platform; Facebook is ramping up its Whatsapp-based mobile payments plans, centering its efforts in London; the HKMA approved four new virtual banking licenses; and SoFi launched two new ETFs.
A federal judge ruled that the DFS can move forward with its lawsuit against the OCC’s proposed fintech charter; the CFTC believes that more companies will apply to become clearinghouses due to growing interest in cryptocurrencies; IBM partnered with Thomson Reuters on a AI-backed regtech product; Facebook is working with large financial institutions to support its reportedly forthcoming stablecoin; and the Boston Fed produced a whitepaper on creating “supervisory nodes” on a blockchain.
The New York Fed launched a new fintech advisory group dedicated to providing Bank leaders with industry insights; Bank of America announced that its Erica virtual assistant now has six million users; IBM rolled out its World Wire real-time global payments network; Amazon partnered with Worldpay to allow the latter’s merchants to pay with Amazon Pay during checkout; Australia outlined a national strategy for blockchain development and implementation; and FIS will purchase Worldpay for $35B.
Twenty-two state AGs challenged the CFPB’s proposed fintech sandbox; the Senate Banking Committee is set to examine financial data collection; JPMorgan Chase introduced its own dollar-backed cryptocurrency; President Trump signed an EO setting aside federal funds for AI projects; IBM won a $700M five-year technology deal with Banco Santander; Ant confirmed its acquisition of WorldFirst; and U.K. challenger bank Starling raised £75M in Series C funding.
The SEC is seeking support from private firms on understanding blockchain; a group of global regulators has launched a global regulator sandbox for cross-border fintech products and services; money transfer service WorldFirst is spinning off its U.S. operations ahead of its acquisition by Ant Financial; IBM completed a pilot test of its blockchain-based trade shipment platform; Stripe raised an additional $100M, reaching a $22.5B valuation; and Lithuania made strides in 2018 as a destination for fintech firms seeking a variety of EU operating licenses.