In success stories, we profile some of the key stories in Fintech and payments this month, focusing on areas of growth, resilience and innovation.
Here’s this month’s dose of positivity, featuring fresh fintech statistics, providing sustainability and inclusivity incentives, as well as new investment and a real crypto city?
Climate action fintech Amplify launches in the UK and Ireland
Amplify is a new greentech startup that makes donations to user-defined climate causes as a reward for buying from a network of sustainable brands. The app donates two percent of each transaction to the user's chosen climate action campaign every time they shop at an Amplify merchant partner.
Users can choose from a wide range of high-impact climate causes to support, including Fashion Revolution, Friends of the Earth, Carbonfund.org, and Rainforest Trust UK. The company has just launched in the UK and Ireland, supported by the Irish Government via Enterprise Ireland.
Conor O’Laoire, CEO and co-founder of Amplify says the firm is currently focused on building its user base across Ireland and the UK, and expanding the brand and partner network:
“The ultimate goal for Amplify is to build a global donation network of sustainable brands and conscious consumers, creating a collective force of climate action," he says. "If we can take the positive impact of every sustainable purchase, and amplify it with a climate donation, the impact of conscious consumerism can be taken to an entirely new level.”
Fintechs take up more than a fifth of spots in Deloitte UK Fast 50
ClearBank, Airtime Rewards and Paysend ranked top three in Deloitte's annual ranking of the top 50 fastest growing technology companies in the UK.
The rankings are determined by revenue growth over the past four years, and with Clearbank reporting 21,000% growth during that time it’s no surprise it emerged as the winner.
Customer championing Airtime measured 16,907% in second place, whilst money transfer operator Paysend came third with 14,498%.
Dozens of fintech firms were singled out in the report, more than 20%, mirroring explosive industry growth.
Standard Chartered ‘Saadiq’ Launches $100 million To Support Islamic Finance Companies
Standard Chartered ‘Saadiq’ announced, the launch of a $100 million Islamic financial programme dedicated to supporting SMEs, Corporates and Multi-nationals across Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
Working in collaboration with the Malaysian Halal Development Corporation the focus will be key halal markets such as the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Bahrain, Bangladesh and Pakistan.
Khurram Hilal, Chief Executive Officer of Islamic Banking and Head of Group Islamic Product at Standard Chartered, said:
“The Halal economy is projected to witness exponential growth and as a leading player in Islamic Banking, we are honoured to be supporting Halal businesses across our global footprint. We are leveraging our network in high growth markets to help businesses succeed by offering them innovative financial solutions; thereby, contributing to the overall growth of the Halal trade -ecosystem.”
Financial Health for Minority Communities Is the Top Priority for Financial Solutions Lab
The Financial Solutions Lab, is an initiative started by the Financial Health Network in collaboration with JPMorgan Chase and Prudential Financial.
As part of its Accelerator challenge, the initiative seeks applications from financial technology companies focused on helping low to moderate-income (LMI) and Black and Latinx communities expand access to benefits and financial tools that help them maintain key safety nets and improve their financial health.
The economic impacts of the pandemic have taken a higher toll on communities of colour, particularly Black and Latinx communities, who face depleted emergency savings, greater job loss, rising healthcare costs, and limited access to workplace retirement savings plans.
El Salvador to build 'Bitcoin City'
El Salvador's crypto enthusiast president is planning to build a "Bitcoin City" that will be partly funded by a bitcoin bond.
Earlier this year, El Salvador became the world's first country to accept bitcoin as legal tender, but President Nayib Bukele has grand plans to take things much further. ‘Bitcoin city’ will be bulit from the ground up, laid out in a circle to mimic its name sake.
This coin shaped city will be powered by geothermal energy from a nearby volcano with a central plaza resembling a giant bitcoin symbol.
El Savador is aiming to bring the future to the here and now with this ambitious project, and is already in negotiations with Blockstream for a $1bn bitcoin bond, half of which will be used to expand energy and bitcoin mining infrastructure in the La Union region, where the city will be constructed. The remaining $500m will be spent on bitcoin itself.
The bond will be funded through VAT, the only tax that will be levied in the new city.
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