Miranda’s Weekly Mex FinTech Monitor

Mexico FinTech News

A probe by the Mexican antitrust authority found competitive restraints in the card payments industry

A report from Mexico’s antitrust authority COFECE found that interchange fees in Mexico average 1.36%, six times higher than in Europe, where they hover around 0.2%. Principally, COFECE reported a lack of competition in clearing services as the market is dominated by Prosa and E-Global and signaled that current regulation favors the status quo because it allows existing clearing houses to define fees and establish the operating rules. Moreover, the clearing houses are owned by various incumbent banks in Mexico. As a next step, the regulator urged the Bank of Mexico and the National Banking and Securities Commission (CNBV) to foster competition and modify how interchange fees are set.

El Economista, 09/14/2023, Edgar Juarez: Cofece identifica barreras a la competencia en el mercado de procesamiento de pagos con tarjeta

Konfío closes its ERP subsidiary Gestionix

Last week, the Mexican unicorn and SME credit provider announced it would close its enterprise resource planning (ERP) subsidiary, leaving Contalink as one of the leading alternatives for independent accountants. Konfío has made several acquisitions in addition to Gestionix which it purchased three years ago, including the digital payments platform Sr. Pago in August 2021 and Astro, a management system, in 2019. The decision to close Gestionix was made as Konfío focuses on its financial services for SMEs.

Contxto, 09/12/2023, Jose Pullido: Konfío pone fin a Gestionix para reforzar su foco en servicios financieros para PYMEs

Other news 

El Heraldo, 09/13/2023, Verónica Reynold: La SHCP apostará por el sector Fintech entre sus planes para el 2024

LexLatin, 09/12/2023, Marcos Salas: Fintech Kapital recibe financiamiento de Accial Capital

Milenio, 09/16/2023, Regina Reyes-Heroles C: UALÁ impulsará a Pymes y emprendedores mexicanos para aceptar pagos digitales


LatAm FinTech News

VTEX launches personal shopper and sales app in Latin America 

The Brazilian SaaS platform VTEX launched Pick and Pack and Live Shopping, along with other improvements, during VTEX CONNECT LATAM, the company’s annual conference in Latin America which was attended by over 12,000 participants. As a company that provides solutions that enable businesses to sell online, the company highlighted how the digital transformation in Latin America is making rapid progress. The region is currently home to approximately 300 million digital shoppers. Mexico has risen to become a significant player, boasting the highest proportion of B2C e-commerce in its total retail sales among all Latin American countries.

América Retail, 09/12/2023, Gabriela Burgos: VTEX launches Personal Shopper and Sales App in Latin America

Antonia Rojas launches new VC Fund Attom Capital 

Antonia Rojas, formerly a partner at ALLVP, has joined forces with Iñigo Martínez Gil to launch a new VC Fund, Attom Capital, which will focus on secondary transactions. The fund aims to provide a variety of liquidity solutions to stakeholders, including purchasing shares from current investors, employees, or founders. Additionally, Attom Capital will cater to angel investors seeking to diversify their investment portfolios and venture capital funds that are approaching the end of their lifecycle. The move comes amid a global growth in the direct secondary space.

Startups Latam, 09/14/2023, Lucas Saavedra: Attom Capital: la chilena Antonia Rojas da el puntapié a nuevo VC

Argentina’s central bank announces changes to DEBIN system, sparks FinTech concerns

Beginning December 1, 2023, Argentina’s Central Bank (BCRA) will implement significant changes to the DEBIN system, (immediate debit) which has been used by over 4 million users. These changes involve the replacement of DEBIN with Immediate Transfers (TIP), a decision which has been criticized by the Argentine Chamber of FinTech. The Chamber argues that DEBIN has proven to be both highly efficient and secure (with minimal fraud rates of 0.02%), while, in contrast, TIP has demonstrated limited success in trials and may potentially have adverse effects on user experiences, as well as an elevated risk of fraudulent transactions.

Bloomberg, 09/15/2023, Juan Pablo Álvarez: Las fintech cruzaron al Banco Central por normativa que afecta a billeteras virtuales

Other news 

Latam Fintech, 09/11/2023, Lemon: Fintech de DeFi Lemon permite convertir dólares en cripto a través de Sardine en Colombia

Latam Fintech, 09/11/2023, Belvo: Fintech de Open Finance Belvo y MiBanco se alían para impulsar el acceso al crédito en Colombia

Chócale, 09/11/2023, Sofía Alvarez: Itaú anunció creación de una plataforma para transformar la gestión financiera de las empresas

Global FinTech News 

Alza Launches Affordable Financial Tools for Immigrants 

Founded in 2021, Alza has emerged from stealth mode after quietly securing $6.6 million late that year, in a round led by Thrive Capital. Alza seeks to provide financial services to Latin and Central American immigrants in the United States who comprise 20% of the U.S. population and contribute $2.8 trillion annually to the US economy. Alza will offer cross-border remittances to over 20 countries in Latin and Central America through its app, offering three transfer methods: bank transfer, cash pick-up, and debit card transfer.

TechCrunch, 09/13/2023, Staff: Alza emerges from stealth to offer affordable and inclusive financial tools to immigrants

French FinTech Swan secures $40 million

Swan has raised €37 million in a series B investment led by Lakestar, a European venture capital giant, bringing its total funds raised to €58 million. Swan intends to use the investment to expand its operations in the Netherlands and enter the Italian market in 2024. The startup focuses on simplifying the integration of banking and financial services into existing platforms, offering embedded financial solutions to businesses in as little as two weeks. The company also plans to broaden its product offerings, including payment collection methods and lending capabilities, targeting industries such as travel, insurance, and business-to-business marketplaces. Embedded finance is predicted to represent 40% of payments in the coming years and is projected to become a $384.8 billion market by 2029.

CNBC, 09/13/2023, Ryan Browne: Early Revolut backer Lakestar leads $40 million investment in French fintech startup Swan

Citi Partners with BondbloX for Digital Bond Trading and Investment

Citi is partnering with BondbloX, the world’s first fractional bond exchange using distributed ledger technology, to provide Citi clients access to bond trading opportunities. This partnership enables clients to trade bonds with Citi’s support, enhancing transparency and accessibility in global bond markets. The bank aims to invest in digital financial market infrastructure, working with BondbloX to simplify and transform bond trading and investing.

Fintech Global, 09/15/2023, Staff: Citi to become first digital custodian on BondbloX Bond Exchange

Other news

Fintech Global, 09/15/2023, Staff: European banks collaborate on new fraud fighting tool for instant payments

Fintech Global, 09/15/2023, Staff: Databricks valuation skyrockets to $43bn after $500m funding round

Fintech Futures, 09/11/2023, Tyler Pathe: Adyen lands UK banking authorisation from FCA and PRA

TechCrunch, 09/13/2023, Rita Liao: Telegram adds self-custodial crypto wallet worldwide, excluding the US