F|T: The FinTech Times – More markdowns and down rounds

Wealthsimple
Plus: Coinbase Slashes Costs, Freezes Hiring Amid Crypto Crash

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Value of Power Corp’s FinTech portfolio drops as Wealthsimple faces second May markdown (BETAKIT)

Power Corp revealed the reduction last week in its Q1 2022 earnings report, noting that the fair value of the firm’s stake in Wealthsimple had decreased by $147 million CAD, or $0.22 per share.


SoftBank-Backed Fintech Giant Klarna Looks for New Funds at Lower Valuation (THE WALL STREET JOURNAL)

Klarna specializes in buy-now-pay-later services, a popular type of cash advance that competes with credit cards and lets customers pay for goods and services in installments without paying interest. Klarna makes money by charging merchants who offer Klarna’s services a fee.


Round13 launches new venture fund with initial $70 million USD to back blockchain companies providing “the base” for Web3 (BETAKIT)

VC firm has secured $70 million USD for its recently launched Digital Asset Fund, from a group of undisclosed investors led by a “major Canadian pension fund,” with support from other institutions, family offices, high-net-worth individuals, and members of the Round13 team.


Block rival SpotOn lands $300M at $3.6B valuation after doubling ARR last year (TECHCRUNCH)

The investment marks SpotOn’s third raise in the past year alone and Dragoneer’s sixth time investing in the company over a three-year period. It is, however, the first time the firm has led a round. It comes on the heels of a year in which the company says it saw 100% year-over-year ARR (annual recurring revenue) growth.


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WonderFi, Bitfarms, Tokens.com, CoinSmart post earnings during a volatile period for crypto (BETAKIT)

Four Canadian crypto companies released their quarterly earnings today, demonstrating that the sector is as equally as volatile as any other current tech stock. Tokens.com Corp. perhaps expressed it best: “While we remain frustrated by our share price performance, we are not unique in the current sell-off in small-cap tech stocks.”


Crypto Might Have an Insider Trading Problem (THE WALL STREET JOURNAL)

Over six days last August, one crypto wallet amassed a stake of $360,000 worth of Gnosis coins, a token tied to an effort to build blockchain-based prediction markets. On the seventh day, Binance—the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by volume—said in a blog post that it would list Gnosis, allowing it to be traded among its users.


Shopify, Crypto.com partnership allows merchants to accept crypto payments (BETAKIT)

Ottawa-based e-commerce tech giant Shopify has been quietly rolling out crypto-related features on its platform. The Crypto.com partnership is just the latest making it possible for merchants to accept crypto.


Southeast Asian payments infrastructure unicorn Xendit banks $300M (TECHCRUNCH)

The company, which bills itself as “the Stripe of Southeast Asia,” also plans to add value-added services in addition to payments, like working capital loans. Xendit now has more than 3,000 customers, including Samsung Indonesia, GrabPay, Ninja Van Philippines, Qoala, Unicef Indonesia, Cashalo and Shopback.


Brim Financial appoints former Marqeta VP Arthur Zhao as chief financial officer (BETAKIT)

Most recently, Zhao served as the vice president of finance and revenue operations at California startup Marqeta. There, he led multiple rounds of capital raise and helped the company to make its market debut on Nasdaq in June last year. Marqeta priced its initial public offering at $27 per share, valuing the company at around $15 billion.


UK Fintech Modulr Finalizes $108M Series C Led by General Atlantic (CROWDFUND INSIDER)

The investment round also “included significant participation from existing investors including Blenheim Chalcot, Frog Capital, Highland Europe, and PayPal Ventures.”


Dapper Labs launches $725 million ecosystem fund for Flow blockchain innovation (BETAKIT)

“The Ecosystem Fund has the opportunity to become a real game-changer for the [more than] 7500 strong and fast-growing developer community in the Flow ecosystem,” said Roham Gharegozlou, CEO of Dapper Labs.


Crypto’s first? What happens when a blockchain like Terra dies (BNN BLOOMBERG)

The Terra blockchain — the platform supporting scores of decentralized applications that let users swap crypto coins and earn yields — was halted and then restarted twice in recent days, as the value of its main cryptocurrency, Luna, and the related TerraUSD (UST) stablecoin collapsed following a wave of selling pressure.


White Star Capital, Coveo alum-led Lighthouse Labs closes $9.1 million CAD to build a search platform for the metaverse (BETAKIT)

In an interview with BetaKit, Brun acknowledged that while interest in the metaverse has “exploded” over the past six months, its development remains in the very early stages. According to Brun, this is part of the reason why Lighthouse Labs sees so much potential, claiming that this evolving environment makes it easier for the startup to propose standards and establish structure across virtual worlds.


Coinbase Slashes Costs, Freezes Hiring Amid Crypto Crash (THE INFORMATION)

Cryptocurrency trading firm Coinbase, whose revenue has shrunk amid a downturn in the sector, is pausing new business projects, freezing hiring for two weeks and aiming to slash its cloud spending on Amazon Web Services, among other cost-cutting measures, according to a pair of internal emails sent to employees this week and viewed by The Information.


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Michael Edgar

Michael Edgar

Michael is a multimedia journalist and Carleton Journalism alumni working out of Ottawa and Montreal. Follow him on twitter @mwedgar.

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