In today’s top Europe, Middle East and Africa news, U.K. high street bank Lloyds has acquired a stake in loyalty app Bink, while European giants Delivery Hero and Glovo have consolidated in the delivery space.
Plus, late payments threaten 8% of U.K. small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs), Egypt’s business-to-business (B2B) eCommerce fashion startup Gahez snags $2 million, and U.K. and EU neobanks brim with potential in 2022.
Lloyds Banking Group, the U.K.’s largest high street lender, has acquired a minority stake in the loyalty app startup Bink, Sky News reported on Monday (Jan. 3). The investment by Lloyd’s follows Barclays’ $12.9 million backing of Bink in 2019.
Launched in 2015 and headquartered in the U.K., Bink enables people to store and view all their loyalty cards on their smartphone and automatically links payment cards for points and rewards.
It’s been a few days into the new year and the ultrafast grocery delivery market in Europe is already buzzing with consolidation moves. On New Year’s Eve, German food delivery giant Delivery Hero announced an acquisition agreement to become the majority shareholder of Barcelona-based unicorn Glovo, valuing the latter at 2.3 billion euros.
The U.K.’s Federation of Small Businesses says that a “late payment crisis,” coupled with high inflation and increased administration for international traders, is threatening to shrink the business community.
The FSB’s latest Small Business Index found that nearly one in three (30%) of the businesses surveyed has seen an increase in late payment on invoices in the last three months. Of those businesses, nearly 10% say late payments threaten their viability.
B2B eCommerce fashion startup Gahez raised $2 million in a pre-seed funding round led by Disruptech Ventures, Wamda.com reported Monday (Jan. 3). Headquartered in Egypt, the digital marketplace, launched at the end of last year, focuses on a data-driven approach to help fashion merchants sidestep procurement headaches.
Despite legal and pandemic-related business challenges, the challenger bank space in the U.K. and EU is brimming with potential, buoyed by growing investor interest and increasing customer sign-ups.
The U.K.’s Monzo is the latest firm to secure fresh capital after Chinese technology giant Tencent made a $100 million capital injection in the firm as part of a $600 million fundraising round that values the British digital bank at $4.5 billion.
Open banking may be seen as a buzzword in the banking and payment industries. It promises new products and innovations that everybody can enjoy, but it is much more than one product or service — it is a choice, regulatory or market driven, that allows a whole new financial ecosystem to flourish.
PYMNTS provides a list of terms showing that the use of open banking goes beyond payments, and many companies can benefit from having access to troves of financial consumer data.