FinTech IPO Index Gains 3% as Robinhood Soars on UK Expansion

The FinTech IPO Index found some renewed momentum this past week, gaining 3% over a five-day stretch that saw platforms lead names to the upside.

Robinhood shares soared 30.5% in the several sessions since the company, as reported at the end of last month, boosted its presence beyond U.S. shores. The company began offering brokerage services to customers in Great Britain, letting them trade more than 6,000 U.S. listed stocks. 

Through the next several weeks, as we noted at launch, the company plans to grant access to its app on a rolling basis, reaching full availability early next year. The company said at the time of the Nov. 30 launch that U.K. residents can join the waitlist now and will be informed when they can sign up for early access.  

The launch follows other attempts by Robinhood to enter the U.K., including its abandoned attempt to acquire cryptocurrency trading platform Ziglu. Robinhood said earlier in November that it plans to launch crypto trading in the European Union following its debut in the U.K.

Affirm shares continued their double-digit rally, adding 14.5% through the past five days on the heels of news that buy now, pay later (BNPL) options have gained wide embrace during the long holiday spending weekend. And in an interview with Bloomberg, Affirm CEO Max Levchin said that BNPL offers an alternative to high-interest credit cards. 

He said Affirm’s model provides simplicity, transparency and control over finances, making it an appealing alternative for consumers seeking such benefits.  

BILL Cuts Staff

BILL Holdings said in an SEC filing that it will cut its staff .   The company noted that it will reduce its global workforce by approximately 15%, close its office in Sydney, Australia, and per the filing “allocate resources to its key business priorities in service of small and midsize businesses and focus on improving the profitability of its core business.” The company estimates that it will incur charges of about $29 million to $35 million in connection with the restructuring. BILL shares were 13% higher on the week.

Alkami Technology shares sank 1.5%.

The company said in a release this past week that  that Quontic Bank, a digital bank, has launched the Alkami Digital Banking Platform, converting the bank’s customer base to Alkami’s single platform for online banking. The companies said in the release that customers will benefit from “enhanced account opening capabilities and data analytics that can drive improved engagement.”

SoFi share rallied 9.2%, during a week where  The Wall Street Journal reported that several brokerages, including SoFi Securities, came under fire — and fines — from FINRA, as the financial regulator said the broker dealers misled millions of investors about their securities-lending programs.  

SoFi Securities — the brokerage arm of SoFi Technologies — enrolled more than 2 million customers in a securities-lending program between January 2019 and March 2023, the Journal reported, receiving more than $8 million in revenue from its clearing firm for lending those customers’ shares. The brokerages, which neither admitted or denied wrongdoing, including SoFi Securities, each paid a $500,000 fine and additional restitution.

Nuvei shares added 9.7% as it launched a partnership with Microsoft centered around the Middle East and Africa. Microsoft will use Nuvei’s payments technology in that part of the world — along with the Canadian firm’s knowledge of local markets — to optimize recurring billing and individual transactions for Office and Xbox customers. Facets of the joint efforts will include optimized authorization rates through local acquisition and improved risk management that minimize false declines.