F|T: The FinTech Times – Boardroom skirmishes prevent Klarna’s IPO prep

Plus: FINTRAC “incident” shows cyberattacks are getting too easy.

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How Klarna’s IPO Prep Got Tangled Up in a Boardroom Drama

The last thing Sebastian Siemiatkowski needed was boardroom drama.

The 42-year-old chief executive officer of the Stockholm-based fintech Klarna had spent months getting his company in better shape ahead of a possible public markets debut.

Klarna in January had appointed a new executive from the venerable venture fund Sequoia Capital to the board: Matthew Miller. Within weeks, though, Miller was looking to make governance changes and sought to oust Klarna’s longtime chairman – and former Sequoia heavyweight – Michael Moritz.

Their fight, it turns out, reflects an uglier skirmish between Siemiatkowski and his co-founder Victor Jacobsson.

(BNN Bloomberg)

Synctera secures $18.6-million Series A extension, launches new payments integration

San Francisco-based banking-as-a-service platform Synctera has secured its second Series A extension and launched a new payments integration.

The $18.6-million USD ($25.3-million CAD) round extension follows the Canadian launch of its embedded banking platform in December.

“We went live in Canada in under nine months and we’ve now scaled our [annual recurring revenue] 4.5x thanks to some new, exciting, big customers,” CEO Peter Hazlehurst said.


Cyber attacks are getting easier, experts warn after 3rd federal incident

High-profile cyber incidents involving Canada’s financial intelligence unit FINTRAC, the RCMP and Global Affairs Canada since the start of the year are not isolated cases, experts warn.

FINTRAC, the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada, on Sunday shut down some of its systems after experiencing a “cyber incident.”

“We see more data breaches, we see larger data breaches happening more often,” Canada Security and Privacy Research Chair Natalia Stakhanova said from Saskatoon.

(Global News)

Contractor management platform PayShepherd closes $7 million CAD as product, market expansion continues

Calgary-based billing software startup PayShepherd has secured $7 million CAD in its second seed financing aimed at expanding the company’s presence in its target markets across North America, namely in the forestry, mining, manufacturing, and energy sectors.

PayShepherd’s software helps heavy industrial and manufacturing facilities manage contractor billing and eliminate overspending by centralizing contractor billing submissions.


Monzo secures $5bn valuation as it prepares return to US

Monzo has secured a fresh round of funding that has boosted its valuation to $5bn, as the London-based fintech prepares a second attempt to break into the US market.

The fintech last year hired a new US chief executive and has announced plans to re-enter the US, this time via a banking partnership that would allow it to bypass a licence application.

(Financial Times)

Lack of inclusion, unclear parental leave still hamper retention of women in Canadian VC

According to Roxanne Leduc, a Canadian Women in VC (CWVC) board member LPs and the VCs they back have focused less of their efforts on inclusion—and this is likely why some Canadian funds are struggling to retain the women and visible minorities they hire.

“When markets are tough, unfortunately, if it’s not mandatory, it will not be a priority for any fund. I think it’s more important than ever in this economic downturn to reemphasize the importance of inclusion and equity, and not just diversity.”


Canadian businesses are optimistic about growth in 2024. Here’s why

Higher interest rates, rampant inflation, looming recession fears, and geopolitical turmoil are all contributing to a seemingly bleak outlook for the year ahead.

However, Zoho Canada has revealed a wave of optimism among Canadian SMBs. Zoho surveyed thousands of small business owners in Canada across a variety of industries over the last year, and nearly 75 percent expect to grow by one to 20 percent in the next year.


Visa names Michiel Wielhouwer as new president and country manager for Visa Canada

Visa has named Michiel Wielhouwer as the new president and country manager for Visa Canada.

He will succeed Stacey Madge, who has been in the job for the past seven years.

Wielhouwer is a veteran Visa executive with 22 years of experience.

He was the executive director of Visa’s business in France, Belgium and Luxembourg.

(The Canadian Press)

Passwords are showing their age. Here’s the tech set to replace them

Despite leaning on passwords, small businesses aren’t confident about their cybersecurity.

“With Canadians increasingly targets of fraud, cyber preparedness can’t be an afterthought. It needs to be a priority for both consumers and businesses,” Aviva Klein, Vice President of Digital Payments & Cybersecurity Solutions at Mastercard noted.

Klein recently shared with BetaKit two key technologies aiding in the fight against these challenges, and how Mastercard is using them to improve the cybersecurity posture of both consumers and businesses.


Nuvei earns US$14.1 million in fourth quarter, revenues also rise

Nuvei Corp. says it earned US$14.1 million in the fourth quarter, up from US$9.4 million a year earlier.

The Montreal-based payment technology company, which reports in U.S. dollars, says revenue for the quarter ended Dec. 31 was US$321.5 million, up from US$220.3 million during the same quarter in 2022.

(BNN Bloomberg)

Feature image courtesy Klarna via LinkedIn.

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at alexriehl.com or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

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