News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

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1.UK – AltFi


P2P Finance News reports that Barclays has taken a minority stake in business finance provider 

MarketInvoice – “a move that will allow the bank to offer its small- and medium-sized enterprise (SME) clients access to MarketInvoice’s technology.

The high street bank hopes the strategic partnership will “transform” the way that SMEs across the UK manage their cash flow. The deal also forms part of Barclays’ plan to invest in new business models for growth, and will help MarketInvoice to broaden its reach across the UK.

MarketInvoice’s online invoice financing proposition will be introduced to Barclays’ SME clients over the coming months across the UK, including the East Midlands, West Midlands and North West London. A full roll-out will come into force nationwide in 2019.

Barclays also plans to fund invoices via MarketInvoice in the future, which will provide the platform with additional funding and scale.”

2. US – FinTech


The excellently named High Times reports:

“Trusted cannabis brand High Times announced today that it will become the first ever stock offering to accept cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Its current equity-crowdfunding process, under Regulation A+, has already begun the process of bringing in cryptocurrencies.

According to High Times CEO Adam Levin, the addition of cryptocurrencies as an option is to enable a much broader group of investors worldwide.

High Times has been at the forefront of popular culture for more than four decades,” Levin said. “Now we’re taking another step into the future, not only as one of the first cannabis-related brands to go public on the Nasdaq but also as the first to allow Bitcoin and Ethereum as part of our public capital raise.”

High Times filed its latest Reg. A report—detailing almost $29 million in reduction of negative equity, significant decreases in operating losses, and a debt reduction—with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission.”

3. US – FinTech

Financial Review on the rise of AI robots from big banks.

“Magellan's Hamish Douglass recently argued that the banking business model might have a limited half-life given the spectre of digital disintermediation posed by fintechs and/or FANG companies (Facebook, Amazon, Netflike, Google.)”



4. International - FinTech


Neufund has inked another partnership agreement, according to Crowdfundinsider.

“This time the equity token offering platform has hooked up with Malta-based BitBay – said to be the third largest European cryptocurrency exchange in operation. Neufund continues to add secondary trading agreements and strategic partners to their growing blockchain based ecosystem. Last month, Neufund formed a partnership with Binance and the Malta Stock Exchange.

BitBay recently moved to Malta lured by the crypto friendly regulatory regime that is also conveniently part of the European Union. Malta has enacted legislation to help govern the crypto / blockchain based sector.

Neufund expects the security token market to be huge. Pointing to research authored by Polymath, Neufund believes security tokens will reach a value of $10 trillion by 2020.

Neufund says that tokenized securities will bring much-needed liquidity to traditional investment assets, including equity instruments. Neufund has a vision of becoming a full stack issuer of securities on blockchain while facilitating trading and ongoing management of the digital assets.

There are other aspiring blockchain based platforms that want to do the same, but Neufund is the first in Europe to publicly share the companies which will soon list their security tokens on Neufund. In June, Neufund named the first 6 security token issuers (now 7). Neufund states that more than a thousand investors have pledged future investments.”

5. International – P2P


Bloomberg runs a report critical of India’s P2P regulation.


“When the Reserve Bank of India first brought out a discussion paper on peer-to-peer lending in April 2016, it said that there were 30 such start-ups in the country. It then proceeded to fashion a set of rules for the nascent but fast-growing sector and came out with regulations in October 2017. Key among them was a requirement that peer-to-peer lenders register with the RBI.”