News Briefing - Crowdfunding, SME And Alternative Finance

Traditional banking hall with customers, and tellers behind glass

1. UK – P2P

 

This Is Money looks at Money&Co, and asks why the company isn't making bigger profits.  Peer2Peer Finance News digs deeper, and adds in information that doesn't show on the balance sheet. 

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2. US – SMEs

 

The Bulletin reports on the Oregon start-up scene:

 

‘Investment in Oregon startups hit its highest point in nearly two decades during 2018. The state’s entrepreneurs pulled in more than $600 million — double the prior year’s haul.

The influx doesn’t reflect a resurgent startup scene, however. Rather, last year’s tally is an echo of an upsurge that took place a decade ago.

The biggest investment went to Portland product development specialist Jama Software, which sold the company for more than $200 million in a deal led by New York investment firm Insight Venture Partners. Jama isn’t a startup anymore — it was founded way back in 2007.”

3. US – FinTech

Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) are booming in offshore financial centres. In 2017, only a small minority of cryptocurrency transactions were taking place offshore but just a year later, according to a study by PriceWaterhouseCoopers and CryptoValley, the Cayman Islands, British Virgin Islands (BVI) and Singapore were the top three jurisdictions of choice for ICOs in the world in 2018.

How did these top three jurisdictions raise more than US$7.67 billion through ICOs, 60% more than the rest of the top ten jurisdictions combined? And why are the world’s ICOs all looking to take place offshore?

 

Crowdfund Insider has more.

4. US – FinTech

Crowdfundinsider appraises a recent report from a global consultancy firm .

“McKinsey published a widely read report on the emerging blockchain industry, titled, Blockchain’s Occam problem.

In brief, McKinsey said that blockchain is failing to live up to its perceived potential. While billions of dollars are being spent on experimentation and applications, the solutions provided are simply not making the cut.

Occam, by the way, believed that simpler solutions were more effective than more complex options. McKinsey has pegged blockchain in the more complex category (at least for the moment). McKinsey admits there is clear potential but doubts are emerging as money is being spent and little is being accomplished.

 

Angel Versetti, CEO of Ambrosus a decentralized IoT network for next-generation supply chains, stated:

“The report claims that competing emerging technologies are hindering the progress of blockchain, however, I think there is no technology that really competes with blockchain in terms of its core value proposition: censorship-resistant, universally trusted ledger of transactions and contracts with no central point of failure. There is no other technology that has come anywhere close to creating this in theory, much less in practice. Blockchain is governed by mathematics and a fixed set of rules, executed transparently and verifiable. I think the problem is that during the hype many projects tried to use blockchain for every single problem in the world (or even sometimes non-existent problems), which led to a lot of failures. Blockchain will not solve all the problems of the world. But in the core value proposition of data integrity and immutability, blockchain is king.”

5. International – FinTech

 

ET Tech looks at a major investment by SoftBank.

 

SoftBank Group will inject another $2 billion in WeWork this year, bringing the Japanese conglomerate's total investment in the office space provider to more than $10 billion, according to two people familiar with the matter.

The new investment will value WeWork at $47 billion, one of the sources said. SoftBank will separately convert previously purchased warrants into equity at a valuation of $20 billion, the source added. The Financial Times reported earlier on Monday that SoftBank was in talks to inject an additional $2 billion into WeWork”