In top Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) news, the U.K.’s Babylon Health reports 371% year-over-year revenue growth in the third quarter; Big Tech firms face a tough week following a European Union clamp-down; Spain’s Eldiario newspaper uses a pay-what-you-want model; African FinTechs see small- to medium-sized business (SMB) investment opportunities with the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), and the Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) framework seeks to govern stablecoin issuance in the EU.
In its first earnings call as a public company, Babylon Health, one of the world’s fastest-growing digital healthcare companies worldwide, announced strong financial and operating results for the third quarter that ended Sept. 30. In terms of headline numbers, the firm reported 371% year-over-year growth in revenue to $74.5 million, up from $15.8 million in Q3 2020.
The wrangling between Europe and Big Tech firms took a significant step up this week, as the EU toughens its grip on some of the world’s largest technology companies. The top headline is no doubt the news that Google lost its key appeal to overturn a landmark antitrust ruling by European regulators, involving a hefty $2.8 billion fine in an EU shopping ads antitrust case.
In 2012, Ignacio Escolar launched Eldiario (The Daily), an online-only newspaper with nine staffers featuring a fee-based model that allows readers to pay whatever they want to access the digital content — even if that means paying nothing. Escolar, who had been a journalist for nearly 20 years when he launched Eldiario, has seen it grow into Spain’s most-read digital newspaper, with 61,000 paying subscribers.
FinTech startups in Africa are ballooning beyond their borders to access a wave of new investments expected to arrive with the advent of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). Several startups have — just in the last month — either raised growth funding, hired top players from the telecom industry or bought another regional player in their vertical.
The blockchain space continues to boom, and data from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) shows that the market capitalization of stablecoins has quadrupled to over $120 billion in 2021. In the EU, this subset of crypto assets has not escaped the eye of regulators, either, and their extensive coverage in the soon-to-be-ratified Markets in Crypto-Assets (MiCA) framework is a clear indication that the EU intends to have an important role in addressing potential risks that could arise from stablecoin issuance.