F|T: The FinTech Times – PayPal spent $1 billion on Xoom, now facing pressure to sell

Plus: Wealthsimple ups user insurance limit.

Welcome to the FinTech Times, a weekly newsletter covering the biggest FinTech news from around the globe. If you want to read F|T before anyone else, make sure to subscribe using the form at the bottom of this page.

Bloom raises $7 million to make applying for reverse mortgages easier (BETAKIT)

Toronto-based Bloom has raised $7 million in Series A funding CAD to make applying for reverse mortgages easier.

Bloom said its platform has been actively expanding since it launched in 2021. It claims to have extended nearly $100 million CAD to homeowners in Ontario and British Columbia to date.

Crypto’s Most Influential Companies Often Follow Their Own Rules — Even After FTX’s Collapse (BNN BLOOMBERG)

The lack of effective corporate governance and due diligence conducted on FTX’s books raised eyebrows around the world. But for crypto industry watchers, it’s not an unfamiliar tale.

Binance exits Canada as crypto trading platforms feel broader impact of stricter regulations (BETAKIT)

Binance, the world’s largest crypto trading platform by daily trading volume, is joining other crypto businesses to pull out of the Canadian market amid mounting regulatory pressure.

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Bank of England plans to reject Revolut’s bid for banking licence

The Bank of England has told the Treasury that it is planning to reject Revolut's application for a banking licence, after a two-year campaign by Britain's most valuable fintech company.

It said the company’s initial application would be turned down owing to concerns over its balance sheet.

Mayor Tory’s departure, competing bids, and financial pressure on province and feds place Collision’s future in Canada in doubt (BETAKIT)

While major North American tech conference Collision has privately communicated intentions to extend its Toronto stay by at least another year, no official agreement has been reached, BetaKit has learned. Securing that agreement might be harder than in years past.

The conference has upped its ask to north of $40 million CAD for an extended three-year stay, as five other cities vie to host the conference.

PayPal, Under Shareholder Pressure, Looks to Sell Xoom

PayPal has been seeking buyers for Xoom, the international money transfer service it bought for roughly $1 billion in 2015.

The sale efforts could signal that activist investor Elliott Management, which accumulated a stake last year, is having an impact on PayPal’s strategic thinking.

Small business banking platform Vault launches with backing from Google’s Gradient Ventures (BETAKIT)

Vault is the latest Canadian startup looking to make banking easier for small-to-medium-sized businesses, securing $5 million CAD in funding to date.

While Shafik and Aziz see their platform as unique, they are far from the first entrepreneurs who have seen a need to make Canadian banking easier for SMBs.

Creditors of Quadriga crypto fraud to receive 13% of funds they lost in payout (THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

Former users of QuadrigaCX will receive 13 per cent of the funds they had stored with the cryptocurrency exchange when it collapsed into bankruptcy after the death of its founder more than four years ago.

More than 17,600 claims were submitted, with amounts ranging from a few hundred dollars to a few million dollars.

How Inkbox CFO Louise Hucal handled the process of being acquired by a global corporation (BETAKIT)

Louise Hucal has worked in Fortune 500 companies and been involved in multiple M&A deals as an employee. However, pen maker Bic’s acquisition of temporary tattoo startup Inkbox felt more personal.

“We were not in the ‘be acquired’ head space at all at that point in time and were still comfortably funded by our venture partners," Hucal said.

Wealthsimple to let users insure up to $300,000 as global bank failures prompt better depositor protection (BETAKIT)

Calling it an industry first, Wealthsimple said its clients with cash accounts are now eligible for up to $300,000 in CDIC coverage.

This new offering comes after the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), where the United States’ Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation only insured deposits up to $250,000.

M-KOPA snaps up $250M+ debt, equity for its asset financing platform (TECHCRUNCH)

M-KOPA, the asset financing platform that offers underbanked African customers access to “productive assets” and the ability to pay for them via digital micropayments, has secured more than $250 million in new funding.

Québec attracted more venture funding than any other Canadian region in Q1 2023 (BETAKIT)

Despite seeing a decline in venture funding both quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year, Québec attracted more investment than any other Canadian region in the first quarter of 2023.

Western Union rival Zepz lays off 26% of employees as fintech cuts continue (CNBC)

Money transfer group Zepz is laying off 420 of its approximately 1600 employees as the fintech sector grapples with a tough macroeconomic environment.

It is the second time in just under a year that Zepz has laid off staff. In June 2022, Zepz implemented job cuts affecting around 5% of its workforce.

Alberta’s tech sector remained resilient in first quarter of 2023 (BETAKIT)

According to briefed.in’s latest report, startups in Alberta raised $225.5 million in the first quarter of 2023. This represents a 30 percent increase in investment from the previous quarter and a 10 percent increase year-over-year.

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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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