Santander acquires controlling interest in trade finance software house Mercury TFS

Santander | March 13, 2020

Banco Santander is to acquire a majority 50.1% stake in Spanish trade finance software house Mercury TFS through a €30 million investment. Santander has used Mercury TFS’s services in Spain, Mexico, Chile and Germany for years, helping customers to manage their entire trade finance activity online or via mobile phone. The bank's businesses in the UK and Portugal will begin using it at year-end through Global Trade Services (GTS), Santander's global trade platform. The head of Santander's global payments services, Javier San Félix, comments: “The investment accelerates our plans to build a service platform for SMEs and international companies to better serve our customers worldwide. We are also helping to globalise Mercury TFS, a software company with huge potential and a team with enormous talent, by reinforcing their technical and commercial teams and complementing their already broad product range.”

Spotlight

Identity theft and fraud are real concerns for your account holders. There are more ways than ever for your account holders to be attacked and whether fair or not, they expect their financial institutions to be protecting them. A 2013 ABA report cited that bank and credit union prevention measures stopped about $13 billion in fraudulent transactions in 2012…yet there is still much more that can be done.


Other News
PAYMENTS

eFactor Network and PrimeRevenue Expanding Access to Finance for Agribusiness Companies in Latin America

PrimeRevenue | June 28, 2022

FIRA (Trust Funds for Rural Development), a second-tier development bank that offers credit and guarantees among other products to the agriculture, livestock, fishing, forestry and agribusiness sectors in Mexico announced a new partnership with PrimeRevenue, Inc., the leading global provider of technology-enabled working capital solutions eFactor's digital solutions, powered by PrimeRevenue's technology, will help streamline the funding of FIRA with its network of Banking and Non-Banking financial intermediaries (IF's). The foregoing will facilitate FIRA funding in the eFactor Marketplace, which is estimated to close with more than $7.5B USD in 2022. This innovative model of connecting Bank with Bank, in this case, FIRA with its network of FIs and NBFIs, is created to facilitate factoring programs for clients related to the rural, agricultural, forestry and fishing sectors, as well as localities with a population of up to 50,000 inhabitants. This is what we are seeking: to specialize and deepen services to the agribusiness sector with a leading technology company. It is an alliance where FIRA wins because it extends services with the help of technology, and we believe that eFactor wins to the extent that it can extend its services of value for the agribusiness." Jesús Alan Elizondo Flores, Managing Director of FIRA. With this alliance, FIRA extends its financial services to small, medium and large producers, for working capital and factoring. Once migrated to the FIRA portfolio, they will be able to use the resources through the eFactor Network technology's platforms. About PrimeRevenue As a pioneer in global B2B payments, the PrimeRevenue SurePay Platform connects the entire supply chain by improving working capital and automating digital payments. Thousands of companies around the world leverage one streamlined platform to increase payment visibility, enhance control, and improve cash flow. PrimeRevenue is headquartered in Atlanta, with offices in London, Prague, Hong Kong, and Melbourne. About eFactor Network eFactor Network is a fintech company, leader in working capital financing in Mexico, started in 2009 with the vision of helping large purchasing organizations improve their working capital by extending payment terms without increasing the burden of their supply chain, as well as to serve its suppliers by giving the option of obtaining an advance payment at attractive financing rates. It has alliances with development banks such as IFC World Bank, IDB Invest, Bancomext, BLADEX and PrimeRevenue; today it has more than 15,000 clients and a presence in 20+ countries where they pay company suppliers in various currencies.

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BITCOIN AND CRYPTO

Online Fundraising Platform, Classy, Launches Crypto Giving Powered by Coinbase Commerce

Classy | June 20, 2022

Today, Classy, an online fundraising platform that provides easy and intuitive technology for nonprofits, announces the launch of Crypto Giving. Through an integration with Coinbase Commerce, nonprofit organizations on Classy's platform can receive donations for multiple types of cryptocurrency, as easily as they can accept donations through credit cards, ACH, PayPal or Venmo. Classy's Crypto Giving product allows nonprofits to tap into a new cohort of philanthropic supporters looking to make a difference by donating their cryptocurrency. Crypto Giving makes it easy for them to donate and equally as easy for a nonprofit to accept the donation. Unlike other cryptocurrency offerings for the nonprofit sector, Classy's offering is built directly into the core giving platform, meaning the option to give in cryptocurrency like Bitcoin or Ethereum, lives right on the organization's donation page and is available across multiple campaign types. And because Crypto Giving is built directly into Classy Pay, Classy's nonprofit payment processing tool, transaction reporting happens directly in-product, alongside all other donations. This offering for Classy's customers comes at a time when cryptocurrency donations have seen an uptick in mainstream activity, such as $60M in cryptocurrency donated as a result of the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine. While the world of cryptocurrency is evolving quickly, Crypto Giving positions nonprofits to tap into this network of donors as it becomes increasingly ubiquitous. The addition of cryptocurrency to our portfolio of payment options is representative of Classy's continued efforts to develop the most impactful and purposeful fundraising technology, No other nonprofit fundraising solution has this type of functionality, across multiple campaigns, built natively into their platform. Nonprofits can now tap into new networks of donors and drive higher conversion rates, all with an easy back-end experience that provides almost immediate data." Christopher Himes, CEO of Classy. At launch, cryptocurrency donors will also be given the option to help offset the environmental impact of their donation by making a one-off individual environmental offset donation via Offset Alliance. Offset Alliance is a certified B Corp that helps make it simple to take measurable and meaningful climate action. Crypto donations have become an increasingly popular and effective way for nonprofits to raise funds. Accepting crypto as an additional donation option allows nonprofits to reach a wider base of donors, and offers consumers more flexibility when donating to causes they care about. We're thrilled that Coinbase Commerce is powering Classy's Crypto Giving solution and we're excited to see more donors drive positive impact through crypto." Coinbase Commerce Product Manager Roy Zhang. About Classy Classy, an affiliate of GoFundMe, is a Public Benefit Corporation and giving platform that enables nonprofits to connect supporters with the causes they care about. Classy's platform provides powerful and intuitive fundraising tools to convert and retain donors. Since 2011, Classy has helped nonprofits mobilize and empower the world for good by helping them raise nearly $4 billion. Classy also hosts the Collaborative conference and the Classy Awards to spotlight the innovative work nonprofits are implementing around the globe.

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FUNDING

USQ Expands Investment Platform with PREDEX Acquisition

USQ, Chatham Financial | August 02, 2022

Union Square Capital Partners, LLC, announced today it acquired the management of PREDEX, a real estate-focused interval fund. PREDEX (Ticker: PRDEX) has $163 million in AUM as of July 27, 2022, bringing total assets of USQ interval funds to approximately $400 million. “True diversification matters, and most investors have been reminded of that over the first half of this year,” said Thomas Miller, Chief Executive Officer of Union Square Capital Partners. Since both funds were launched, they have consistently demonstrated that non-correlation to the broader markets while still delivering strong risk-adjusted returns is possible, both having a three-year correlation of just -0.02 to the S&P 500 Index as of June 30, 2022. During the same period, the USQ Core Real Estate Fund (Ticker: USQIX) delivered an annualized return of 10.46%, while PRDEX delivered an annualized return of 12.09%. USQ’s first fund, USQIX, has a primary investment objective to generate a return comprised of both current income and long-term capital appreciation with moderate volatility and low correlation to the broader markets. USQ implements this strategy by investing in the core private equity real estate funds that comprise the NCREIF Fund Index — Open-end Diversified Core Equity (“NFI-ODCE”). PREDEX likewise serves as a gateway to private core real estate but implements a slightly different approach that allows for a portion of assets to be held in funds outside of the NFI-ODCE Index. “We are excited to join the USQ team and feel they are a perfect partner to support growing the PREDEX fund,” said J. Grayson Sanders, founder of PREDEX. “We are excited to join the USQ team and feel they are a perfect partner to support growing the PREDEX fund,” said J. Grayson Sanders, founder of PREDEX. The expansion of the USQ strategies is aligned with long-term plans for the firm. “This acquisition highlights our commitment to growing our asset management business through both organic growth and strategic acquisitions,” said Matt Henry, Managing Partner and Founder of USQ and Chief Executive Officer of Chatham Financial. The performance quoted represents past performance. Past performance does not guarantee future results. The current performance may be lower or higher than the performance data quoted. The investment return and principal value of the Fund will fluctuate; an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Performance data current to the most recent month end may be obtained by calling 1-833-877-3863 for USQIX or 1-877-940-7202 for PRDEX. Fund returns reflect actual fee waivers and reimbursement of expenses for the time periods represented. Had fees and expenses not been waived and reimbursed, returns would have been lower. See each fund’s prospectus for more information on current fees and expenses. About USQ USQ, a wholly owned subsidiary of Chatham Financial Corp., is an investment management firm providing access to inventive strategies for real asset investing. The USQ platform leverages in-depth knowledge of real estate financing complexities to offer modern investing approaches spanning the needs from registered investment advisors to institutional investors. Union Square Capital Partners, LLC brings low-cost, institutional private real estate to wealth managers. About Chatham Financial Chatham Financial is the largest independent financial risk management advisory and technology firm. A leader in debt and derivative solutions, Chatham provides clients with access to in-depth knowledge, innovative tools, and an incomparable team of over 600 employees to help mitigate risks associated with interest rate, foreign currency, and commodity exposures. Founded in 1991, Chatham serves more than 3,000 companies across a wide range of industries — handling over $750 billion in transaction volume annually and helping businesses maximize their value in the capital markets, every day. To learn more, visit chathamfinancial.com.

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CORE BANKING

BforBank Chooses Temenos on Google Cloud to Power Future Expansion

BforBank | May 17, 2022

Temenos (SIX: TEMN) today announced that BforBank, the fully digital bank of the Crédit Agricole Group, has selected Temenos open platform for composable banking to support future expansion. The bank is moving from an on-premise implementation to using Temenos core banking solutions on Google Cloud to tap new growth opportunities and drive efficiencies at scale. A pioneer in digital banking, BforBank launched in 2009, offering a new approach to savings, life insurance, mutual funds and e-brokerage to the French mass affluent market. The online bank has since expanded to provide a full suite of retail banking services, with accounts, payments and lending products, including mortgages. Providing a simple and highly personalized experience “empowering customers to become their own private banker” has enabled BforBank to differentiate in an increasingly competitive market. Since its inception, Temenos core banking software has underpinned the bank’s back-office operations. As banking becomes more collaborative, moving to a fully cloud-native, API-first stack on Google Cloud will give the bank hyperscale agility, flexibility, and scalability to launch new services faster at a lower cost. The banking world is changing fast. After 12 years of successful operations and ahead of new strategic initiatives, we wanted to challenge our initial choices. We initiated a complex process and tested several software vendors with proof of concept on Google Cloud. Temenos was just the obvious choice, having invested relentlessly during the past years to deliver the most open and secure cloud banking platform for composing and deploying banking services at scale.” Pascal Luigi, Deputy CEO, BforBank. We have built a trusted partnership with BforBank and its parent Credit Agricole over many years. As BforBank looks to the future, we are delighted to build on this relationship to support its growth ambitions. To lead in the new banking world requires an open, cloud-native approach, enabled by AI, Open APIs, and modern DevOps practices, and this is what Temenos delivers. Being selected as BforBank’s cloud banking platform shows the bank’s confidence in Temenos to drive innovation and create new opportunities.” Max Chuard, CEO, Temenos. The banking industry is increasingly seeing that cloud technology is not just a driver of efficiency, but an enabler of change. Through our partnership with Temenos, we look forward to powering BforBank’s digital transformation which will enhance its banking services with highly connected and personalized interactions for customers at scale.” Zac Maufe, Head of Financial Services, Google Cloud. About Temenos Temenos AG (SIX: TEMN) is the world’s leader in banking software. Over 3,000 banks across the globe, including 41 of the top 50 banks, rely on Temenos to process both the daily transactions and client interactions of more than 1.2 billion banking customers. Temenos offers cloud-native, cloud-agnostic and AI-driven front office, core banking, payments and fund administration software enabling banks to deliver frictionless, omnichannel customer experiences and gain operational excellence. Temenos software is proven to enable its top-performing clients to achieve cost-income ratios of 26.8% half the industry average and returns on equity of 29%, three times the industry average. These clients also invest 51% of their IT budget on growth and innovation versus maintenance, which is double the industry average, proving the banks’ IT investment is adding tangible value to their business.

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Spotlight

Identity theft and fraud are real concerns for your account holders. There are more ways than ever for your account holders to be attacked and whether fair or not, they expect their financial institutions to be protecting them. A 2013 ABA report cited that bank and credit union prevention measures stopped about $13 billion in fraudulent transactions in 2012…yet there is still much more that can be done.

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