The FinTech Five – 4th December 2021

Blog, News

Welcome to the FinTech Five, the part of the week where we take a closer look at the best articles, news, and features from over the past week from our FinTech Wales members.

1. Sonovate & XPO strike exclusive funding partnership to resolve payment disconnect between brands and their influencers

 Sonovate, the embedded business finance lender, and XPO, the digital payments app for social media content creators (or ‘influencers’), have agreed a strategic partnership that sees Sonovate named XPO’s exclusive funding partner. Under the terms of the partnership, Sonovate becomes XPO’s sole funding partner, helping to ensure the thousands of influencers that use XPO to manage their payments get paid by the brands that use them in full and on time, every time. Combining Sonovate’s industry-recognised embedded finance tools and XPO’s easy-to-navigate app, the partners help influencers to get paid within as little as 24 hours after completing a job. 

The first financial intermediary of its kind, XPO pays out to content creators on behalf of the brands using them, including TikTok, Nike, Experian, BooHoo and Estee Lauder. Since launching its app in summer 2021, XPO has helped creators collectively save five years of waiting time. The market for influencers is growing extremely fast. Industry figures suggest influencer marketing today is worth approximately $14 billion globally*, and predict that by 2022 the market will be twice the size it was in 2019**.

 Richard Prime, co-founder and co-CEO at Sonovate, commented: 

“XPO is building up a significant first-mover advantage in a market that is massively underserved and hugely scalable. The traditional 90-day payment cycle of businesses simply doesn’t chime with a modern gig worker’s expectation of near-immediate invoice settlement. Increasingly, businesses recognise the benefit of using gig workers, such as influencers, to help them engage new customers, but too few of them are set up operationally and financially to handle changing payment expectations. We’re delighted to support XPO to bridge the gap in this market with a commonsense solution that works for all.

Lotanna Ezeike, co-founder & CEO of XPO, added: 

“Younger people’s desire for greater ownership over what they do and how they spend their working lives has been a big driver behind content creation as a career path. Brands are alive to this shift and are working out how best they can work with content creators and get the best from this generation of young people determined to work differently. Our partnership with Sonovate provides brands with an attractive alternative to managing multiple influencers a month and the huge admin issue that this creates. Not only do we manage the flow of finance, but we facilitate communication between brands and influencers, ensuring a good working relationship.”

Visit Sonovate’s website here. 

2. Welsh Fintech Export Market Visit to Dubai Expo

Next, Welsh Government invites Welsh Fintech and Cyber Security companies to participate in its export market visit to Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Why UAE/ Dubai Expo?  

The UAE is a vibrant economy, which is consistently in the top 10 markets for Welsh Exports. More specifically, Dubai is one of the world’s top ten FinTech hubs, which is being driven by transformational change in the Financial Services sector across the whole region of the Middle East, Africa and South Asia.

This change has been accelerated during the pandemic by increased demand from both private and commercial customers, especially in strategic industries like banking, communications, transport and storage.  And this is matched by the willingess of local and International banks to meet the challenges with innovative FinTech and Cyber Security solutions.

Why Attend?

This visit offers an opportunity to showcase your company, gain valuable contacts and develop your Exports in this region.

By participating in this visit, you will benefit from:

  • Cost effective means of visiting the market.
  • Network and engage with key businesses and decision makers in the market
  • Sharing knowledge and information with other mission participants
  • Assistance with travel arrangements through appointed travel agent
  • Attend networking events
  • Inclusion in any marketing material

The deadline for application is 15th January 2022. 

Click here for more information on eligibility and how to apply. 

3. It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas with the help of Yoello

Next this week, Yoello are delighted to be powering some of the UK’s most loved Winter Wonderlands this year in Cardiff, Swansea, Nottingham and Birmingham!

Winter Wonderland will be bringing the festive cheer to each city, and Yoello will be behind the scenes powering payments and ensuring that everything runs smoothly.

With social distancing being a non-negotiable at these kinds of events, Yoello features like remote payments, click and collect and QR code menus can help Winter Wonderlands stay on top of their obligations.

Read the full article here for more information and to find out how Yoello works at big events. 

4.  The Wales Technology Awards are back!

Next, Technology Connected, after having brought you two very successful Wales Tech Weeks digitally- can now finally bring you their highly-anticipated Wales Technology Awards, returning  physically for 2022. 

Join the celebration on Thursday 24th March 2022 at City Hall, Cardiff as the spotlight is shined on the Welsh Technology Industry, its innovative companies and most of all its amazing individuals. 

With new Award categories and a new simpler application process, enter your organisation or nominate that “outstanding” individual today.

Technology Connected invites ALL organisations in Wales operating in the technology industry to enter the Wales Technology Awards 2022, you do not have to be a Technology Member to apply.

Don’t forget to follow @technologyconnx to keep updated! 

5. Know your power! Power your future with CWIC and Sero

Last but not least this week, Sero have announced that construction of their ‘Know Your Power’ mobile facility is well underway.

Ever since the Construction Wales Innovation Centre (located in the University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s Innovation Quarter, Swansea) appointed Sero to design and build this facility, the whole team at Sero have been lining up to get involved.

Whilst on campus in Swansea the space will be used to demonstrate and compare how carbon reducing technologies can be used in both new build and retrofit.

The most exciting part of this project is that it is fully mobile. Sero has lots of plans, from visiting other educational facilities and campus’, to visiting trade shows, new housing developments and maybe even the occasional builders’ merchants. To not only show what current technologies are available, but how multiple technologies can work in harmony with one another via the Sero Intelligent Energy System, potentially speeding up any home’s pathway to Net Zero.

Sero will demonstrate PV, cutting edge Solar Glass, Underfloor Heating, and the facility will include:

  • A Ground Source Heat Pump
  • An Air Source Heat Pump
  • Battery Storage and EV Charging
  • 2 Hot water cylinders, one where you can choose and monitor how much water is heated at any time.
  • A Mechanical Ventilation Heat Recovery Unit.
  • Plus loads more!

Most of the equipment will be operational allowing students and academic partners to carry out research using Sero’s advanced data and environmental monitoring. Information that is currently being rolled out across Sero new build sites, and across Wales through the Optimised Retrofit collaboration.

Gareth Evans, Head of CWIC said: 

“Construction has a significant role to play in ensuring we meet decarbonisation targets, at CWIC see that more and more of the workforce need focused support as our construction industry makes a significant drive towards net zero.  Our innovative Know your Power module is set to become a valued asset for construction students and the industry alike, ensuring that trades and professions of all experiences pan-Wales have an opportunity to feel confident and capable working within a changing world of net zero technology and practices.”

Read the full article on Sero’s website here. 

Until Next Time…

That’s it for this month’s Friends of FinTech Five. For more information on any of our Friend Members, visit our members directory and discover what’s new from the organisations helping the financial technology community to succeed throughout the region.

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