Opinion| Why the rulebooks on money transfer are being ripped up!


By Mike Laven, CEO, The Currency Cloud

If ‘FinTech’ is one of technology’s hottest sectors today, then international payments must surely be the hottest niche, at least if we’re judging by level of investor activity. This year in London alone, remittance players WorldRemit and Azimo scooped $40m and $10m in Series A rounds respectively, peer-to-peer hedging firm Kantox took €6.5m, while my own firm The Currency Cloud has just raised $10m in a Series B.

So why are tech entrepreneurs rushing to innovate in international payments, money transfer and foreign exchange? Well, one interpretation is that the retail international payments market is finally beginning to follow the lead of the capital markets.

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An algorithm ….a bidding war? ‘Silicon Valley’ is the brand new US comedy from Mike Judge and we have the trailer!


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Tradeshift have just raised $75m in funding. We asked CEO Christian Lanng what message he had for European entrepreneurs?


The European start-up scene is thriving, full of bright young things trying to turn innovative ideas into real businesses.

But, increasingly I’m starting to feel that things are getting out of kilter: the start-up scene seems to have become more important than the actual building of successful businesses. There’s a fascination in being immersed in the start-up culture – people want to see and be seen – and this is getting in the way of actual work.

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We are thrilled that you can now listen to Monocle magazines fantastic weekly show ‘The Entrepreneurs’ on the blog now!


Monocle

As part of our philosophy to make our fast growing Silicon Roundabout platform an invaluable resource in the technology ‘ecosystem’ we are delighted to now bring you Monocle Magazines weekly show ‘The Entrepreneurs’. Enjoy!

 

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Your Seven Days in the World of Technology courtesy of the Wired.co.uk Podcast!


Wired podcast

Listen this week for an entertaining 30-minute look at the most interesting technology and science stories from the last seven days, with Wired.co.uk’s Olivia Solon, Liat Clark and Nicholas Tufnell.

Once again Care.data is proving to be a hot mess. Remember all that sensitive personal information they promised they wouldn’t give to insurers? They gave it to insurers. Liat takes a look at how medical professionals are trying to treat the strange phenomenon of phantom limbs, and we discuss the news that the European Union and Brazil have agreed to lay a fibre-optic undersea communications cable across the Atlantic in an attempt to “guarantee” net neutrality — is this the beginning of a balkanised web?

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Expanding to London from the USA? In Part 3 of the series Richard Goold examines Employment Law Issues.


Buckingham palace

Non-EU nationals require a permit in order to be able to work in the UK, but otherwise hiring employees is relatively simple.

Employees must be given written confirmation of their basic employment terms, either in a simple document or alternatively (particularly when restrictions on competing activities, non-solicitation and non-dealing are to be imposed) in a detailed agreement.

Foreign companies should be aware that UK employees benefit from many employment rights simply by virtue of being based here, which can have implications for staff seconded from overseas.

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Your week in Tech in a handy 30 minute Podcast, courtesy of Wired.co.uk!


Wired podcast

Listen this week for an entertaining 30-minute look at the most interesting technology and science stories from the last seven days, with Wired.co.uk’s Olivia Solon, Katie Collins and Liat Clark.

This week:

Top stories
1) Microsoft has a new CEO
2) David Cameron: I don’t think Snowden’s had a big public impact
3) GCHQ targeting anonymous in DDOS attack
4) Creepy AI will talk to your loved ones after you die

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Thinking of exiting a tech business? Fay Margo explains the growing ‘Secondary Direct’ market!


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Patience is a virtue, or so the saying goes… It’s not always a virtue though, if you’re a venture capitalist. VC investors are having to wait longer and longer before exiting their portfolio companies, according to research carried out by Dow Jones Venture Source.

A growing number of venture-backed tech firms are finding they need to develop their business models further before an attractive exit is possible; which all takes time.

In the past, business angel and venture capital funds would buy and hold investments until the final exit, be it a trade sale, an IPO or liquidation.

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Your week in tech, courtesy of Wired.co.uk’s Podcast!


Wired podcast

Listen this week for an entertaining 30-minute look at the most interesting technology and science stories from the last seven days, with Wired.co.uk’s Nate Lanxon, Olivia Solon and Liat Clark.

This week:

Top stories
1) Forcing ISPs to block The Pirate Bay is ineffective, rules Dutch court
2) Do you feel immortal? Chances are you did when you were born
3) GCHQ spied on Facebook and YouTube in real time to check for trends

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We asked the leading entrepreneurs behind Streethub, Kabbee, Borro, Lovestruck,SecretEscapes and Alex and Alexa what are your hopes for 2014 and what predictions do you have for the world of disruptive technology?


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Maxim Berglund
Co-founder of StreetHub
www.streethub.com

We hope for another great year for London startups in 2014!

Technology is becoming increasingly location aware on a very granular level. Mobile phones are the perfect technology for location services and so we don’t see the trends for mobile-first or mobile-only startups slowing down any time soon. As more data layers are added on top of the physical world, it is opening up for startups to create solutions to many day-to-day location specific problems. We think this will lead to more disruptive startups in the hyperlocal arena emerging, hopefully many of them in London!

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