China: WeiyangX Fintech Review

CreditEase Fintech Investment Fund is Making a New Investment. Guess Who the Fund is Interested in? 

Last week (September 18th -24th), CreditEase Fintech Investment Fund, a venture committed to investing growth-stage Fintech startups in China and globally, announced a new round of investment to three different Fintech startups, namely Tiger Brokers, Ellevest and Lenda. Apart from that, CreditEase has participated in investments towards other 9 fintech firms. Among the 12 firms, 4 are from China and 8 from the US. Here is a chart of all these investments:   

Investment History of CreditEase Fintech Investment Fund

Company

Time

Amount

Round

Intro

Country

Tiger Brokers

Sept. 2017

——

Strategic Investment

Online brokerage

China

Ellevest

Sept. 2017

$ 34.60 million

C

Digital investment

US

Lenda

Sept. 2017

$ 5.25 million

A

Online housing loans

US

Marqeta

Aug. 2017

$ 25 million

D

Open payment

US

Upgrade

Apr. 2017

$ 60 million

A

Consumer credit

US

Souche.com

Apr. 2017

$ 180 million

D

Auto finance

China

Trumid

Mar. 2017

——

C

Electronic bond exchange

US

WeConvene

Mar. 2017

——

B

Communication and conference organizing system

Hong Kong, China

WorldCover

Mar. 2017

——

Seed

Insurtech

US

DYCD.com

Jan. 2017

$ 360 million

B

Auto finance

China

TradeShift

June. 2016

$ 75 million

D

e-invoice

US

Circle

June. 2016

$60 million

A

Bitcoin payment

US

(Source: 01Caijing)

Transportation Solutions Become the New Battlefield for Mobile Payments

Statistics from China Internet Network Information Center (June. 2017) shows that there are now 502 million mobile payment users in China, accounting for 67% of the total Chinses Internet users. At present, the mobile payments market in Chinese retail industry is dominated by two fintech magnates-Alipay and WeChat Paywhich leaves little opportunities for the late-comers (provided by conventional commercial banks) or foreign competitors (e.g. Apple Pay).

According to figures from China UnionPay, the annual transportation journeys (e.g. Bus and Subway/Metro) in China is 90 billion. The high frequency of use and demand are creating a new battlefield for Chinese mobile payment service providers. Compared with traditional plastic transport card, it is easier and faster to commute with a smartphone. Currently, non-bank payment institutions have started to grab the emerging market. For example:

  • China UnionPay: Guangzhou (metro), Hangzhou (metro, bus and high-speed railway), Longyan of Fujian Province (bus), and Zhaoqing of Guangdong Province (bus)
  • Tencent (WeChat Pay): Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Qingdao, Foshan and Hefei
  • Alipay: Hangzhou, Wuhan, Jiaxing and 7 other cities.

What will the transportation payment market look like in the future? Is it going to be same “war” between Alipay and Wechat or a more diversified market competition? All still remain to be seen. (Source: Jiemian

Chinese firm JUZIX is named in the CB Insights list of 12 most promising blockchain startups

The Fintech 250 is a list created by CB Insights, presenting the top 250 private companies transforming the conventional financial services. The list is comprised of companies in sectors from across all the fintech markets (e.g. insurtech, blockchain, online market lending, online wealth management and payment).

12 startups stand out from the blockchain sector. They are RippleDigital Asset HoldingChainJUZIXAxoniBlockstreamFactomCoinbaseBraveXapoPolychain Capital and Blockstack Labs. Apart from JUZIX, all the other 11 startups are from the US.

JUZIX is a cloud provider for online information infrastructure utilized in financial services, logistics, IoT, healthcare, transportation and other industries. The platform is dedicated to offering simple, secure and efficient services for entities adopting distributed technology. (Source: SINOTF)

Hong Kong Monetary Authority launches Fintech sandbox

On September 29th, Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) launched a series of initiatives, preparing Hong Kong to “A New Era of Smart Banking”. 

The initiatives to be launched includes:

  1. Faster Payment System
  2. Enhanced Fintech Supervisory Sandbox
  • Providing communication chatroom for fintech and tech startups to exchange ideas with regulatory authorities;
  • Linking up sandboxes of HKMA, the Securities and Futures Commission and the Insurance Authority to offer a single point of entry for pilot trials of cross-sector fintech products. 
  1. Promotion of Virtual Banking
  1. Banking Made Easy initiative
  2. Open Application Programming Interface (API)
  3. Closer cross-border collaboration
  4. Enhanced research and talent development

(Source: HKMA)

Macau Monetary Authority Bars Banks and Payment Agencies from ICO and Cryptocurrency Services

On September 27th, Macau Monetary Authority (MMA, also referred as Autoridade Monetária de Macau” (AMCM)) issued a document named “Alert to Risks of Virtual Commodities and Tokens”, requiring all banks and payment agencies in Macau to stop providing services to ICO and cryptocurrencies.

In fact, as early as in 2014, MMA has already warned the industry and the public that “Bitcoin is a type of virtual commodity which is neither a legal tender nor a financial instrument subject to supervision”. In consideration of the speculative activities related to the issuance of cryptocurrencies in Mainland China, MMA has decided to take a similar regulatory attitude as PBOC towards this fast growing market. (Source: The Paper)


 

WeiyangX is the most influential website focusing on fintech in China. The site covers the latest news, industry data analysis, business practices, and in-depth fintech cases in fintech. WeiyangX is incubated by Fintech Lab. Founded by Tsinghua University’s People’s Bank of China (PBC) School of Finance in 2012, the Fintech Lab is the first and leading research entity dedicated to leading best practices, promoting interdisciplinary innovation, and encouraging entrepreneurship in the field of fintech through scientific research and innovative project incubation.

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