Beyond WeWork’s Flameout, Real Estate’s Platform Model Rework

September 30, 2019 at 09:00AM WeWork’s spectacular initial public offering (IPO) flameout may serve as a cautionary tale for tech companies. The decision to not list shares amid a game of “how low can they go” ­— rapidly reduced valuations highlighted a desperate bid to find out where Wall Street would finally lend its support ­— may signal that the age of high-flying unicorns is over. At the very least, business models with rapidly rising top lines and swelling seas of red ink will get more than a second look from investors, both public and private, and scrutiny over companies’ … Continue reading Beyond WeWork’s Flameout, Real Estate’s Platform Model Rework

Consumers Who Use Mobile In-Store Are More Frequent Brick-And-Mortar Shoppers

May 22, 2019 at 01:30PM Mobile commerce has become part of the daily routine for many consumers — who are not just using devices to shop on the go, but also in-store and for a variety of product categories. In the 2019 edition of the Remote Payments Study, PYMNTS collected and analyzed survey data from 2,300 American consumers to see how shopping habits have changed and evolved from last year. Once upon a time, it was predicted that the rise of smartphones would spell the end of traditional retail, but that hasn’t really happened. In the study, nearly half (48 … Continue reading Consumers Who Use Mobile In-Store Are More Frequent Brick-And-Mortar Shoppers

Visa Uses NYC Mass Transit To Ignite Contactless Payments

May 22, 2019 at 01:09PM The first time is a charm. In fact, the first time must be a charm. No, we are not talking about first dates or so-called “meet cutes” in movies. We are talking about consumer acceptance of contactless payments in the U.S. – specifically, the use of such payments for mass transit in New York City. It’s an unforgiving environment where people are famously told not to look too long at other riders, so you can imagine the frustrations in store if those payments should fail while someone is trying to catch a subway to work. … Continue reading Visa Uses NYC Mass Transit To Ignite Contactless Payments

Moody’s Teams Up On Small Business Cash Flow Forecasting

May 22, 2019 at 01:00PM Moody’s Corporation is partnering with the Foundation for Small Business Development (FFSBD) to connect small businesses with cash flow forecasting solutions and other financial resources. The company announced in a press release Tuesday (May 21) that it will collaborate to provide cash management tools and financial education for the small business assistance network of Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs). Citing research from Wakefield Research published earlier this year, which found 61 percent of small businesses regularly struggle with cash flow, Moody’s said connecting small businesses with education and cash flow forecasting technology through the SBDC … Continue reading Moody’s Teams Up On Small Business Cash Flow Forecasting

Shadow Banking Casts Shadows Over Economic Heavyweights

May 22, 2019 at 01:00PM The U.S. and China have begun to concern some economists with record levels of corporate debt. However, when U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell spoke on the issue during a conference in Florida earlier this week, it wasn’t so much the corporate debt levels that concerned him. It was the way some companies obtain that debt that could lead to problems. His biggest worry, according to USA Today this week, was that some corporate borrowing is “financed opaquely, outside the banking” system, and that a reliance on shadow banking could “pose a new threat to … Continue reading Shadow Banking Casts Shadows Over Economic Heavyweights

Spend Management Startup Ivalua Hits Unicorn Status

May 22, 2019 at 01:00PM Enterprise spend management technology firm Ivalua has announced $60 million in new funding, which boosts the company’s valuation beyond $1 billion. Ivalua announced its newfound unicorn status in a press release on Tuesday (May 21), noting that Tiger Global Management and Ardian Growth led the equity round. Tiger Global Management is now a shareholder of the company, though Ivalua management retains a majority stake in the firm. The company stated that it plans to use the investment to further accelerate growth in the spend management market as it approaches $100 million in annual revenues, which … Continue reading Spend Management Startup Ivalua Hits Unicorn Status

Biz2Credit White Labels SMB Lending Tech For Banks

May 22, 2019 at 01:00PM Small business lending platform Biz2Credit is rolling out a new technology designed to help traditional financial institutions strengthen their small to medium-sized business (SMB) lending operations. With its launch announced Tuesday (May 21), Biz2X is a Software-as-a-Service platform that integrates loan lifecycle management, risk analytics and features to strengthen the borrower experience. The white label solution includes artificial intelligence (AI) analytics that can configure to an institution’s unique credit policies. “Biz2X is built on the same technology that has helped Biz2Credit become the premier digital lending platform for small businesses,” said Biz2Credit Chief Executive Officer and … Continue reading Biz2Credit White Labels SMB Lending Tech For Banks

Fed Chairman Weighs In On Corporate Debt Risk

May 22, 2019 at 01:00PM Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell offered his thoughts on rising corporate debt levels in the U.S. and abroad just weeks after the Fed released its latest financial stability report, which found that the U.S. economy “appears resilient.” USA Today on Tuesday (May 21) reported that Powell spoke during a banking conference in Florida, where he said the Fed is closely monitoring corporate debt levels, concluding that the risks are “moderate.” While some economists consider current corporate debt levels to represent “a rerun of the subprime mortgage crisis,” others have said there is “nothing to worry … Continue reading Fed Chairman Weighs In On Corporate Debt Risk

Blockchain Hits The Road (Literally)

May 22, 2019 at 01:00PM Call it blockchain on wheels — the literal kind, as in vehicles, on the road. News came this week that automotive giants Honda and General Motors (GM) are, according to Nikkei Asian Review, working together on a joint research project that will help gauge the potential of electric vehicles (EVs) to “stabilize the supply of power” used in conjunction with next-generation smart grids. The companies, Nikkei reported, will develop ways to keep data flowing that can track power usage in the grid and by the vehicles. The vehicle owners could ostensibly, and eventually, earn fees … Continue reading Blockchain Hits The Road (Literally)

The SMB C-Suite’s Data Security Problem

May 22, 2019 at 01:00PM In an environment of relentless cyber threats, small businesses (SMBs) still too often feel they are not targets for cyberattacks and data breaches. Less than two years ago, Manta researchers found that only 16 percent of small business owners believed they were at risk of a cyberattack, with most believing that the data within their systems was not desired by cybercriminals, and that they would be able to survive an attack should it occur. Yet, the reality is far from so. Continuum analysts have estimated that the average cost of a cyberattack on a small … Continue reading The SMB C-Suite’s Data Security Problem

Self-Proclaimed Bitcoin Inventor Awarded Registrations

May 22, 2019 at 12:13PM Self-proclaimed bitcoin inventor Craig Wright has been awarded registrations for a white paper and early computer code related to the cryptocurrency. The U.S. Copyright Office named the Australian computer scientist as the author of the marketing proposal and code for bitcoin, under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. A representative for Wright revealed that he will now try to stop the crypto community from referring to the original token as bitcoin because it no longer has the attributes described in the research paper. Instead, he claimed that Bitcoin SV, or Satoshi Vision, which Wright later developed, is … Continue reading Self-Proclaimed Bitcoin Inventor Awarded Registrations

Uber Gearing Up To Launch Unlimited Delivery Membership Program

May 22, 2019 at 12:10PM Uber, the newly public ride-hailing startup, is gearing up to launch a subscription plan for food delivery. Reports citing code hidden in the Android Uber app reported the service will cost $9.99 a month, giving users free unlimited food delivery. The service will be called Uber Eats Pass, according to reports. In addition to getting unlimited food delivery each month, Uber Eats Pass removes the service fee that is typically about 15 percent of the cost of the order. Since that can be $5 or higher, users who get a lot of food delivered stand … Continue reading Uber Gearing Up To Launch Unlimited Delivery Membership Program

TransferWise Raises $292M At A $3.5B Valuation

May 22, 2019 at 12:10PM TransferWise, the U.K. money transfer startup, has raised $292 million in a round of funding, giving it a valuation of $3.5 billion. To date, TransferWise has raised $689 million in venture funding. Reuters, citing the company, reported the round was led by Lead Edge Capital, Lone Pine Capital, and Vitruvian Partners. Other participants included existing investors Baillie Gifford and Andreessen Horowitz. Reuters noted some of the investment was made by BlackRock funds as well.  Investors who took part in previous funding raising rounds include Sir Richard Branson, Valar Ventures and PayPal co-founder Max Levchin. TransferWise … Continue reading TransferWise Raises $292M At A $3.5B Valuation

Insuring A 10-Minute eScooter Ride? There’s An App For That

May 22, 2019 at 12:01PM Many of us have seem them, and many of us have likely had the same reaction — those eScooters zipping along on sidewalks and streets, seeming to barely miss hitting cars and pedestrians, or being foiled by cracks, potholes and other obstacles. Scooter riders might not even be wearing helmets, which can make others feel as though they are about to witness a serious accident. Excuse the public service announcement scare tone, but it’s in service of a larger point. As the market for so-called specialized mobility options increases (we are talking not only shared … Continue reading Insuring A 10-Minute eScooter Ride? There’s An App For That

Bitcoin Daily: Task Force Targets New Crypto Regulations; UK Investors Lost $34M To Crypto Scams In Last Fiscal Year

May 22, 2019 at 12:01PM Sean Coonce, engineering manager at cryptocurrency startup BitGo, has written a blog post explaining how he lost $100,000 in a SIM-swapping hack. “This was the single most expensive lesson of my life and I want to share my experience + lessons learned with as many people as possible. My goal is to increase awareness about these types of attacks and to motivate you to increase the security of your online identity,” he wrote. The hack,which drained his entire account, started when Coonce realized his phone didn’t have cellular service. He then received a notification that … Continue reading Bitcoin Daily: Task Force Targets New Crypto Regulations; UK Investors Lost $34M To Crypto Scams In Last Fiscal Year

Making Movie-In Financially Feasible For Millennials

May 22, 2019 at 12:00PM In 2010 a small, obscure New York State Political party grabbed a lot of viral attention with a video by their candidate for the governorship Jimmy McMIllan.  McMillan’s party name and his message are one in the same – “The Rent Is Too Damn High.”   The RITDH movement did not win the governorship – nor has it ever won any office – possibly because they are a bit of onenote political movement.  Still, it is hard to say they are wrong on the facts – at least in most places in the U.S. Rents in … Continue reading Making Movie-In Financially Feasible For Millennials

Google Stored Users’ Passwords In Plaintext

May 22, 2019 at 11:45AM Google has revealed that some of its enterprise customers had their passwords stored on its systems in plaintext. The tech giant announced on Tuesday (May 21) that the bug affected “a small percentage of G Suite users,” so it did not impact individual consumer accounts, but affected some corporate accounts. Google is working with enterprise administrators to ensure that users reset their passwords, and has been investigating the incident. So far, the company claims there is no evidence of improper access to or misuse of the affected credentials. “We recently notified G Suite administrators to … Continue reading Google Stored Users’ Passwords In Plaintext

Nordstrom Eyes Local Markets, Experiences After Q1 Sales Miss

May 22, 2019 at 11:01AM With loyalty, digital marketing and merchandise contributing to declines across its full-priced and off-priced businesses, Nordstrom reported first-quarter earnings that were below analysts’ expectations. The department store retailer reported revenues of $3.4 billion and earnings per share of 23 cents compared to analyst’s expectations of $3.6 billion and 43 cents. Nordstrom co-president Erik Nordstrom said in the company’s earnings conference call, “We’re making the changes we believe are necessary to drive our top line” and he reiterated that “our strength is our commitment to the customer.” But the company knows that it has areas for improvement and … Continue reading Nordstrom Eyes Local Markets, Experiences After Q1 Sales Miss

Mexican Pres. To Boost Banking Options For Citizens

May 22, 2019 at 10:45AM Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is in support of big banks that want to expand in Mexico. According to The Wall Street Journal, Mexico’s leader meets regularly with bank chiefs and has championed less-stringent regulation on financial institutions, which he believes can police themselves. In addition, he was recently able to broker a compromise on a proposal from his own political party that would have eliminated many retail banking fees —and cost banks hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. The new regulation will allow banks to keep charging most fees, as long as … Continue reading Mexican Pres. To Boost Banking Options For Citizens

Analyst: Tesla Should Have Sold To Apple For $240/Share

May 22, 2019 at 10:44AM An analyst has revealed that Tesla missed out on the chance to sell to Apple six years ago for around $240 per share. “Around 2013, there was a serious bid from Apple at around $240 a share,” Craig Irwin, an analyst at Roth Capital Partners, told CNBC. “This is something we did multiple checks on. I have complete confidence that this is accurate. Apple bid for Tesla. I don’t know if it got to a formal paperwork stage, but I know from multiple different sources that this was very credible.” While Tesla is down more … Continue reading Analyst: Tesla Should Have Sold To Apple For $240/Share

India’s Snapdeal Marketplace In Talks To Buy Rival ShopClues

May 22, 2019 at 10:11AM Indian eCommerce company Snapdeal is reportedly in talks to buy its rival ShopClues in an all-stock deal. Sources said the due diligence process has already begun, and the proposed transaction is likely to value ShopClues at $200 million t0 $250 million, according to DealStreetAsia. The deal comes after a possible merger between Flipkart and Snapdeal fell through in 2017. The online retailer has already been looking to raise capital at a valuation of about $2 billion, and the acquisition of ShopClues could help its funding efforts. Snapdeal has also been struggling to compete with eCommerce … Continue reading India’s Snapdeal Marketplace In Talks To Buy Rival ShopClues

Senators Propose $2.2B AI Investment

May 22, 2019 at 09:38AM Two senators have proposed new legislation that would allocate $2.2 billion toward federal research and development (R&D), and create a national artificial intelligence (AI) strategy. The Artificial Intelligence Initiative Act was introduced by U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH), Martin Heinrich (D-NM) and Brian Schatz (D-HI). The funding would be spread out over the next five years to federal agencies, including the Department of Energy, Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and others. In addition, a National AI Coordination Office would be created to lead federal AI efforts, as well as require … Continue reading Senators Propose $2.2B AI Investment

Citi: Why And How To Bring More Collaboration To Payments

May 22, 2019 at 09:03AM There is no “i” in team — every coach’s mantra. Guess what, though? That’s only half the story when it comes to the concept of working together for the greater good. As it turns out, “payments is a team sport,” at least in the view of Manish Kohli, global head of payments and receivables at Citi. In a recent PYMNTS discussion with Karen Webster, Kohli dug deep into how financial institutions (FIs), FinTech firms and others need to find ways to work together to advance the cause of digital payments. That doesn’t mean everyone is … Continue reading Citi: Why And How To Bring More Collaboration To Payments

Paving Mobile Banking’s Path To Success

May 22, 2019 at 09:02AM The old adage is that a journey of 1,000 miles begins with a first step. In banking, the customer journey, of course, begins with the first steps involved in setting up a relationship — offering up names, addresses, Social Security numbers (SSNs) and a wealth of other data to set up accounts. However, that’s a process that needs to keep up with the times. Jim Priestley, chief revenue officer at Feedzai, pointed out that mobile banking has changed in the past five years — and as mobile banking efforts change, so, too, must the ways … Continue reading Paving Mobile Banking’s Path To Success

Real-Time Payments Fraud: An FI Infrastructure Issue

May 22, 2019 at 09:00AM As the need for speed increases worldwide, banks and other financial players are adapting payments to work smarter — not harder. Faced with a growing number of transactions to process in real time, payment service providers (PSPs), financial institutions (FIs) and FinTech firms also need to make sure the security of these smarter payment systems is up to par. With fraud ramping up, regulators around the globe are starting to take a closer look at everything from typical threats to the use of new technologies, like blockchain. As transaction times grow tighter and cover more … Continue reading Real-Time Payments Fraud: An FI Infrastructure Issue

Germany’s Central Bank Says Tech Presents Hurdles, Opportunities

May 21, 2019 at 10:44PM Bundesbank, Germany’s central bank, said increased use of financial technology in the country could present regulators with their biggest hurdle since the financial crisis, according to a report by Bloomberg. “We are seeing completely new business models like platforms and crowdfunding,” said Joachim Wuermeling, a board member at Germany’s central bank. Banks’ outsourcing of activities to companies that are more technology than finance means regulators lose oversight of those activities. Bundesbank has been in contact with all of the large tech companies providing financial services to talk about plans, Wuermeling said. Globally, banks are looking … Continue reading Germany’s Central Bank Says Tech Presents Hurdles, Opportunities

After US Blacklist, Huawei Weighs Its Options For Phones

May 21, 2019 at 10:24PM After a blacklist by the United States, Chinese Telecom giant Huawei is considering creating its own operating system for its mobile phones and will also consider alternatives to Google’s Android, according to a report by Bloomberg. The Huawei ban affects the company’s ability to procure chips, components and it threatens its relationships with software suppliers. The company said on Tuesday (May 21) that it was talking to Alphabet Inc., the parent company of Google, on how to move forward after the decision. Google said it would cut access to some of Huawei’s system features for … Continue reading After US Blacklist, Huawei Weighs Its Options For Phones

Jeff Bezos Says He’s Fascinated By Auto Industry

May 21, 2019 at 10:23PM At a recent all-hands meeting for Amazon employees in March, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said developments in autonomous automobile technology fascinated him, according to a report by CNBC. This was one of the reasons, he said, that he had Amazon invest $700 million in electric vehicle startup Rivian this past February. “If you think about the auto industry right now, there’s so many things going on with Uber-ization, electrification, the connected car – so it’s a fascinating industry,” Bezos said, according to a recording of the meeting. “It’s going to be something very interesting to … Continue reading Jeff Bezos Says He’s Fascinated By Auto Industry

For Wells Fargo CEO (a Lot of) Scrutiny Ahead

May 21, 2019 at 10:15PM   Wells Fargo has been under the proverbial microscope – and now, ever more so, will its CEO. The scandal scarred bank is on the lookout for its next chief executive, with Tim Sloan having departed roughly two months ago.  At the moment, C. Allen Parker is interim head of the company. But as Reuters reports, when the next CEO takes the reins, he or she will be required to do everything from submit fingerprints to offer up tax documents, and will generally face a “vetting process that could rival that of top government officials.” … Continue reading For Wells Fargo CEO (a Lot of) Scrutiny Ahead

AI-Driven Sales Startup People.ai Raises $60M In Funding Round

May 21, 2019 at 09:23PM An artificial intelligence (AI)-driven predictive sales startup called People.ai has raised $60 million in a funding round, and has attracted some of the biggest-name investors around, according to a report by TechCrunch. The funding round was led by ICONIQ Capital, a VC that includes the office of Mark and Priscilla Zuckerberg, as well as Andreessen Horowitz, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Y Combinator and GGV Capital. The startup’s valuation is estimated to be at around $500 million. The company’s platform ingests all the sales data a person will generate while working, and then uses it to help … Continue reading AI-Driven Sales Startup People.ai Raises $60M In Funding Round