Crypterium Launches Virtual Card

Earlier this month at FinovateFall Digital, it was heartening to hear a number of fintech founders and CEOs highlight the blockchain and cryptocurrencies among the technologies they are most excited about in 2021. While a number of other enabling technologies such as AI and machine learning are in the spotlight right now and others, such as 5G and the IoT are waiting impatiently in the wings, innovations in digital assets and cryptocurrencies have seemed less common in 2020 compared to years past.

That makes the news of Crypterium’s new virtual card – and Apple Pay compatibility – all the more welcome for those who believe the best days for cryptocurrencies are still to come. The Estonia-based company, founded in 2017 and making its Finovate debut one year later, announced this week the availability of its new Crypterium Virtual Visa Card. The new free option gives users the ability to chose between a physical, plastic card, a virtual card, or both, and enables them to make all their contactless purchases with the convenience of a single virtual card on their mobile device. Cardholders can load their cards daily from €2 to €5,000, and have immediate access to their funds.

The company noted that it plans to enable users to integrate their virtual card with Google Pay as well. A timeline for this update was not specified.

Crypterium helps make cryptocurrencies practical by enabling users to load their digital wallets – and now their virtual cards as well – with Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin, and use those cryptocurrencies to transact with more than 42 million retailers. The company has 500,000 users worldwide, operates in more than 180 countries, and has processed more than 50 million payments.


Entersekt and ndgit Partner to Boost Open Banking

A partnership between two Munich, Germany-based firms – identity verification innovator Entersekt and open banking platform provider ndgit – will make Entersekt’s authentication and smart messaging solutions available on ndgit’s Marketplace. The marketplace offers a curated environment for financial services companies to access a variety of fintech solutions.

Entersekt partners with banks and other enterprises around the world to fast-track their digital enablement journeys, helping them respond to changing consumer preferences while meeting their compliance obligations with confidence,” Central Europe country manager for Entersekt Uwe Hartel said. “We are proud to join forces with ndgit, which has a very similar outlook. Together, we can drive innovation in open banking, securely.”

More than 30 banks and businesses around the world use ndgit’s API platform to digitize their operations and take advantage of the opportunities in open banking. In 2017, the company implemented the first open banking system for Switzerland, earning the Euro Finance Tech Award that year for best fintech bank partnership. At ndgit’s most recent Finovate appearance at FinovateEurope last year, the company demonstrated how its platform powered a PSD2-enabled digital loan application with minimal data entry and a fully secure risk profile.


Here is our look at fintech around the world.

Asia-Pacific

  • Hong Kong-based financial infrastructure company Airwallex secures an additional $40 million in an extended Series D round.
  • PayMongo, a Philippines-based online payment platform, announces a $12 million Series A round led by Stripe.
  • South Korea’s Kakao Pay plans to be the first mobile payment fintech in the country to go pubic.

Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Will South African banks make paper checks a thing of the past?
  • Vodacom Tanzania opens its M-Pesa API to encourage developers to build new use cases for its mobile payment service.
  • Nigeria’s Jumia teams up with Airtel Kenya to enable consumers to make online transactions using Airtel Money.

Central and Eastern Europe

  • Germany fintech Deposit Solutions goes live in the U.S. with its savings portal SaveBetter.com.
  • Romanian card processing firm Romcard / Supercard (formerly Wirecard Romania) is acquired by Portuguese payments company SIBS.
  • Polish ecommerce platform Allegro earns valuation of $11.2 billion in Warsaw’s biggest IPO to date.

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • National Bank of Bahrain introduces its Tap & Go contactless payment service at POS terminals and cards.
  • The Fintech Times features Noha Shaker, founder and Secretary-General of the Egyptian Fintech Association as part of its MENA Women in Fintech Series.
  • Are banks stifling fintech innovation in Israel’s financial services industry? Crowdfund Insider reviews concerns from the country’s Competition Authority.

Central and Southern Asia

  • Quartz takes a look at Amazon’s interest in the mobile payments market in India.
  • Pakistan-based fintech and logistics hybrid PostEx secures “six-figure, pre-seed investment” from angel investor Farhan Abbas Sheikh.
  • HatchX, the first fintech accelerator in Sri Lanka, showcases seven startups that are building insurance, payments, and credit solutions.

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Facial recognition technology from FacePhi is helping senior citizens in Argentina collect their pensions without fear of fraud.
  • Euromoney looks at the potential impact of Chile’s new financial portability law on the country’s digital banking industry.
  • Argentina’s Ualá, a mobile payments startup backed by George Soros and Steve Cohen, goes live in Mexico.

Photo by Erik Karits from Pexels