Visa And Georgia’s Tbc-Backed Neobank – Space Announce Strategic Partnership

Visa signs partnership agreement with FTSE250 TBC Bank’s Space, the first Georgian neobank,to develop innovative banking solutions in Georgia andbeyond in the growing digital payments landscape

Visa And Georgia’s Tbc-Backed Neobank - Space Announce Strategic Partnership

TBILISI, 14 NOVEMBER 2019 – Visa, the world’s leader in digital payments, and Space, the first fully digital bank in Georgia, today announced they have signed a partnership agreement to jointly develop innovative banking services and expand digital banking footprints in new geographies.

Space is a startup backed by TBC Bank and was launched in 2018 with just three employees. They now have more than 70 employees, and have amassed a portfolio of more than 160,000 consumers. The bank operates as an innovative banking laboratory, and has successfully introduced financial services in new formats in Georgia. These include online bank account opening, remote KYC, courier card delivery by electro scooters, and the ability to manage all banking services through a mobile app.

Through the partnership, Visa will work with Space to jointly develop innovative, user-centric and secure banking solutions and help Space in their ambitions to expand to other countries focusing on CISSEE (Commonwealth of Independent States and Southeastern Europe).

Nikoloz Kurdiani, the Deputy CEO of TBC Bank said,“Space has the ability to transform everyday banking experiences by making them easier and better. When we launched Space, we wanted to move beyond the traditional banking approach and outdated technology to create a new type of bank in Georgia that would be better at responding to modern customers’ needs. Now, we are ready to go global. Therefore, it is critically important for us to have gained Visa as our strategic partner. Space has proved that its innovative and ambitious vision is realistic and that it is ready to accomplish bigger goals.”

Yevgen Lisnyak, Senior Director and Head of Strategic Partnerships, Fintech & Ventures (Visa, CISSEE), added:At Visa we believe in the power of partnership to bring our profound experience and innovative solutions to emerging payment players like Space. Being in the center of Fintech ecosystem, we aim to share our knowledge, best practices and network of technological partners with Space to achieve mutual goals in expanding the reach of digital financial services. Today, we are witnessing a rapid transformation of the financial banking sector, where new players are playing a significant role. Neobanks are agile, consumer-centric, flexible and innovative, offering modern consumers completely new financial solutions and digital banking experience. We are excited to be able to support fintechs to navigate the payments landscape in the Caucasus region to achieve their business growth and international expansion ambitions”

About Visa Inc.

Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is the world’s leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, reliable and secure payment network – enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company’s relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of connected commerce on any device, and a driving force behind the dream of a cashless future for everyone, everywhere.  As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce. For more information, visit www.corporate.visa.com, www.visasoutheasteurope.com, https://www.facebook.com/VisaGeorgiaGE;

About Space

For the first time in region, thoroughly digital banking service – Space has launched. Space, powered by TBC Bank, is aka Neobank, that doesn’t have any branch offices or physical spaces, and exists just on mobile phones. Space is user friendly and aims at giving simple, transparent and rapid daily financial service. Space, the first ever digital bank in Georgia and in the region, was launched in May, 2018 and it has already achieved more than 400,000 downloads and 160,000 registered customers (As of 31 September, 2019). Aim of Space bank is to deliver a full daily banking mobile service with superior customer experience by putting special focus on differentiating by design, customer care, price transparency and instant service delivery. Space is available on App Store and Google Play.

SMEs hoarding record levels of cash amid Brexit turmoil – and it’s costing them billions a year

  • SMEs now hold an estimated £333 billion in cash deposits – a record high
  • But SMEs are set to miss out on £3.7 billion in interest this year because their money is languishing in low-paying savings accounts
  • This may also be damaging to the UK economy as it relies heavily on the performance of SMEs, says Flagstone

UK small and medium-sized businesses are holding record levels of cash as uncertainty surrounding Brexit persists – and it is costing them billions of pounds a year, new analysis reveals.

In the last 12 months, SME’s cash reserves have increased by more than 3% to £333 billion – the highest level on record – according to analysis of UK Finance figures by the Centre for Economic and Business Research (CEBR) on behalf of Flagstone, the UK’s largest cash deposit platform.

Much of this growth has been from deposits into instant-access accounts. Indeed, nearly 58% of all SME cash reserves are now being held in instant-access accounts, suggesting that firms want quick access to their money.

However, by doing this firms are missing out on billions of pounds of interest as these accounts typically pay the lowest interest rates.

With SMEs currently holding £191 billion in instant-access accounts and receiving an average rate of 0.41 % [1], they are on track to earn £566 million in interest in the coming year, CEBR’s analysis found. However, if they were to switch to a market leading instant-access rate of 1.40% [2], they would earn £2.7 billion in total in the next year – £2.1 billion more than they are currently expected to earn.

Further, UK SMEs currently hold £141 billion in fixed-rate deposit accounts earning on average 0.86%, meaning they are expected to earn £1.2 billion in the next 12 months. But if SMEs instead switched to the market-leading 1.95% one-year fixed rate, they would collectively earn £2.8 billion in interest in the coming 12 months – £1.6 billion more than they would have otherwise.

It means, in total, firms are expected to miss out on £3.7 billion in interest in the next year because their money is languishing in low-rate savings accounts.

That extra £3.7 billion would be enough to fund for a year the salaries of more than 123,360 additional workers on the UK average annual salary of £29,588[3].

Separate research conducted by YouGov on behalf of Flagstone reveals why SMEs are reluctant to shop around for a better rate for their cash.

Almost four in ten (39%) of the 500 firms surveyed said the hassle of opening an account is the greatest barrier stopping them from moving their money followed by 34% of firms who said the perceived risks of depositing money with a challenger or non-high street bank was the biggest deterrent.

Andrew Thatcher, Co-Founder and Co-Managing Partner of Flagstone, said: “It’s clear that firms are worried about what effect Brexit will have on their business and are hording cash in case the waters become choppy. However, whilst this may be a sensible move, our study reveals that firms aren’t choosing the best home for their cash. Often, firms are getting sub-optimal rates of interest when they could be getting much higher returns on their cash by shopping around.

“The research shows that savings apathy doesn’t just affect individual savers, but also the nation’s businesses too. Each year SMEs are missing out on billions of pounds of interest because they’re failing to shop around for a better deposit rate for their cash reserves. Firms that forego this extra cash could be missing out on the chance to grow their business by hiring extra staff or investing in productivity improvements.”

“The solution a platform like Flagstone provides is that it not only consistently keeps business owners and financial directors in the path of the best rates, but it also removes the barriers to switching, providing a simple way to increase income and reduce risk. If you are an SME or charity with excess cash at bank it makes no sense not to at least consider a service such as Flagstone and choose from one of hundreds of deposit products at the touch of a button to earn more money.”

[1] All figures on current SME cash holdings and average interest rates are Bank of England data, analysed by the Cebr

[2] Correct as at 4 November 2019

[3] Employee earnings in the UK: 2018, released by ONS on 25 October 2018. Annual figure calculated by multiplying median full-time gross weekly earnings (£569) by 52

Flagstone

Flagstone is an FCA authorised and regulated fintech company (FCA reference numbers 676754 and 605504) located in London and founded in 2013. Flagstone’s online cash deposit platform enables companies, charities and individuals to earn more interest and reduce risk through diversification. Completion of a single application gives the client access to over 550 deposit accounts from 38 different banks and enables them to research and open accounts in just a matter of keystrokes. The platform puts clients in control of their cash, giving them access to market-leading and exclusive rates from a growing panel of UK banks, consolidated reporting and regular new rate alerts to ensure that their cash is working as hard as possible for them 24/7. For more information, see www.flagstoneim.com or watch a short film explaining what we do and how it benefits clients by clicking here.  

All of the UK banks on the Flagstone platform are authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the PRA. Deposits placed with any of these banks via the Flagstone platform are afforded exactly the same Financial Services Compensation Scheme protection (i.e. £85,000 per individual depositor per authorised institution) as if the client placed the deposit directly with the bank.

G-Core Labs and Wasabi Technologies partner to offer superior cloud storage and CDN services for the media and entertainment business

Boston, MA / Amsterdam, NL. Wasabi Technologies, the hot cloud storage company, today announces a partnership with G-Core Labs, an international provider of cloud and edge solutions for content delivery, hosting and security. Now Wasabi customers can leverage company’s cloud storage with G-Core Labs global content delivery network (CDN), whilst G-Core Labs expands the geography of its cloud storage in Europe, North America and Asia by offering  Wasabi.      

The integrated solution particularly benefits customers with applications that require large file sizes to be transported and stored with high performance such a media storage, gaming, e-commerce and online services. The partnership will significantly reduce costs for customers, while increasing their speed of operations and making it easier for them to scale internationally. It will also provide fault-tolerant data warehousing and content delivery network functionality with Wasabi’s 11x9s data durability and G-Core Labs CDN average response time of less than 30 milliseconds.

Dmitry Samoshkin, vice president of products at G-Core Labs commented: “By simultaneously providing high-quality cloud storage and accelerating the loading and delivery of multimedia content and business information, G-Core Labs and Wasabi are together offering ground-breaking, integrated solutions.Whether you are a fast-growing online multimedia service provider, a game developer, bank or medical company, your business requires a high-performance content delivery network that makes it easy to scale. This is what this partnership is offering – at market-leading prices.”   

“Through this partnership, customers can take advantage of G-Core Labs’ market leading content delivery network services in combination with Wasabi’s hot cloud storage offering” stated David Friend, CEO of Wasabi. e

“The G-Core Labs CDN is easily accessible for Wasabi customers in Europe, Russia and Asia as it has been integrated through our S3 API. Together, we are enabling customers to get ahead of the competition by cutting storage costs and ensuring faster, more reliable data delivery.”

Wasabi delivers a truly agile and cost-effective storage hub for hybrid and multi-cloud media workflows. This is built on a revolutionary file system and architecture, with multiple data centres across the United States and in Europe.

Wasabi writes and reads data faster than competing cloud storage services and the company has transformed the cloud storage market by offering a single tier of ultra-high performance storage with no charges for data egress or API requests.

About G-Core Labs

G-Core Labs is an international cloud and edge leader in content delivery, hosting and security solutions for any business, headquartered in Luxembourg, whose global infrastructure is included in the Guinness Book of Records.

G-Core Labs provides a wide range of services for customers of all industries that develop their business online. The company’s services include managed hosting, content delivery network (CDN), advanced media platform for professional broadcasts and streaming of any complexity, protection against DDoS attacks of any level, cloud content storage etc. G-Core Labs built its own global infrastructure on all continents (over 100 nodes in reliable Tier 3 data centers) with the best CDN performance in Europe, Russia and the CIS.

The company’s clients are leading international and regional brands in the field of telecommunications, finance, media, video games developers and publishers, including MTS, Beeline, Megaphone, Tinkoff Bank, Wargaming holding (World of Tanks, World of Warships, World of Warplanes), american publisher of games RedFox Games, TV channel “78”, etc.

 On content delivery network (CDN)

G-Core Labs created its own global content delivery network on five continents to solve the difficult problem of instantly transmitting the heaviest type of content — high-quality online games, with peak loads on the system. The infrastructure created was tested by millions of users playing at the same time and became the owner of the Guinness record.

G-Core Labs provides instantaneous transfer of content, speeding up customers’ websites and online stores and offering highly-efficient security.

G-Core Labs network is ready for any peak traffic, as the total network bandwidth exceeds 7 Tbit/s. G-Core Labs has about 4,000 peering partners, in addition to agreements with major operators and an ISP license.

CDN by G-Core Labs has the best performance in Europe, Russia and the CIS according to Citrix.com, a leader in independent monitoring and optimising CDN performance, in the following parameters:

  • The best throughput (the amount of data that a site transmits in fixed time)
  • The best response time (actual request processing time, plus the delay in transmitting information over the network and messages delay in the queue)
  • The best time of files downloading.

Furthermore, CDN by G-Core Labs allows for:

• More than 1 million full HD videos to be watched at the same time

• Over 2.1 million simultaneous requests to be sent to the site per second

• Five million song downloads per second

• More than 20 million tracks to be listened to at the same time

About Wasabi Technologies

Wasabi is the hot cloud storage company delivering disruptive storage technology that is 1/5th of Amazon S3 and faster than the competition with no fees for egress or API requests. Unlike first generation cloud vendors, Wasabi focuses solely on providing the world’s best cloud storage platform. Created by Carbonite co-founders and cloud storage pioneers David Friend and Jeff Flowers, Wasabi is on a mission to commoditize the storage industry. Wasabi is a privately held company based in Boston, MA. Follow and connect with Wasabi on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and our blog.

Financial Sector Turning Backs On Younger Workers As Employers Prefer ‘Loyal’ Older Generations

November 2019

More than a third of business owners in the finance sector would choose to recruit an older worker than a younger candidate with exactly the same skills and experience, according to new research.

In a national survey, more than a third (36%) of 1,000 SME business owners across a range of sectors including education, healthcare, IT, manufacturing, hospitality and tourism said that they would sooner recruit a 55-year-old than a 24-year-old, with 35% of business owners in the finance sector saying the same. Just a quarter (25%) of finance business owners preferred a 24-year-old with the same CV. Issues raised by business leaders about so-called ‘snowflake’ and ‘Millennial’ employees included ‘lower productivity’, ‘higher absence rates’ and ‘a poorer grasp of the English language’, instead preferring ‘loyal’ older workers, according to data gathered by the UK’s most trusted business healthcare provider, Benenden Health.

The study, which also surveyed 1,000 employees, found that nationally more than half (56%) of Generation Z employees (aged 16-23) felt they have been overlooked for roles due to their age compared to 47% of Millennials (aged 24-38), 29% of Generation X (aged 39-54) and a third (34%) of Baby Boomers (aged 55-72). More than a third of employees surveyed in the finance sector felt they had been overlooked for a job due to their age.

However, when it comes to attracting and retaining a workforce, the findings have shown a major discrepancy between what employers and employees see as a priority, with 56% of employees in the financial sector stating that a strong health and wellbeing scheme would increase their likelihood to stay with a business.

Health and wellbeing packages are starting to command increasing importance for employees, with nearly half of all respondents in the finance sector (48%) saying a strong health and wellbeing benefit would increase their likelihood to join or stay with a business. Nationally, Generation Z employees (aged 16-23) revealed they would be willing to sacrifice a whopping third of their salary to receive a healthcare package that fits their personal needs.

Yet, despite this, nearly two thirds (64%) of SMEs surveyed in the finance sector reported that they don’t have a healthcare package in place for employees above statutory allowances, with 57% of those without one claiming they don’t believe it is necessary and nearly half (46%) saying they don’t believe or weren’t sure a strong health and wellbeing package is valuable in recruiting and retaining employees.

In addition, more than a quarter of financial businesses (26%) revealed that they have never consulted workers on what they would value in a healthcare package, despite employees having different priorities depending on their age. Nationally, younger workers revealed that they place value on mental health support, counselling sessions and life skill lessons, whereas older generations said regular medical checks and flexible working were top of their list of potential healthcare benefits.

Helen Smith, Chief Commercial Officer of Benenden Health, commented: “Our research has highlighted some interesting statistics on the attitudes of employers towards a multigenerational workforce. The finance sector appears to be one of the more progressive industries in regard to hiring younger workers, but there is still a preference for older workers, even those with the same skills and experience as younger candidates. Unlocking the potential of a multigenerational workforce is the key to harnessing skills and talents of different generations.

“Our research found that healthcare is becoming increasingly valued by financial workers with nearly half (47%) of employees in the sector willing to sacrifice over 30% of their salary – indicating that businesses should be offering tailored health and wellbeing plans to meet the varied needs of a modern workforce and attract a talent multigenerational workforce

“Younger generations told us that mental health support is of great importance to them, but these priorities change over time. Generation X workers often have the dual commitment of looking after children and parents so flexible working is valued by them, and with employees working longer than ever, ensuring your older workers are catered for as well – through regular eyesight and hearing tests, and ergonomic offices, for example – is vital to maintaining a strong modern workforce.

“At Benenden Health we firmly believe that a healthy workforce is a productive and motivated workforce and having these open conversations with employees and tailoring a healthcare approach to suit will put businesses in prime position for recruiting, retaining and maximising talent.”

Benenden Health is a not-for-profit society with a UK-wide membership of over 815,000, founded in 1905 to bring people together to help pay for medical care when they might need it. Today, it has a mission to support businesses by providing affordable healthcare that helps keep employees healthy and valued and businesses thriving.

To download Benenden Health’s guide to managing the needs of a multigenerational workforce, go to: https://www.benenden.co.uk/health-through-your-life
 

Top five sectors least likely to hire younger generations:

Out of 1,000 SME employers, it was found that these five sectors are the least likely to hire a 24-year-old over a 55-year-old

  1. Manufacturing (11% preferred a 24 year old to a 55 year old with the same CV)
  2. Education (15%)
  3. Tourism and Leisure (19%)
  4. Retail, Hospitality and Catering (19%)
  5. Healthcare (24%)

Veriff hires a top executive from Stack Overflow and opens an office in New York

Veriff hires a top executive from Stack Overflow and opens an office in New York
Guy Zerega

Online verification company Veriff hires Guy Zerega, a former Executive Vice President of Revenue of Stack Overflow. Zerega serves as the Senior Vice President of Sales at Veriff being in charge of building the company’s global sales organization and business expansion.

Zerega spent the last 8 years at a programmer-specific Q&A portal Stack Overflow leading the sales organization as their Executive Vice President of Revenue and working to make the internet a better place. 

According to Guy Zerega, Veriff SVP of Sales, the mission of a safer internet aligns perfectly with Veriff’s intention to make trust scalable and reliable the online world. “In a couple of years, the idea of online identity verification will become commonplace. I see  tremendous potential for Veriff to dramatically change the online verification processmeanwhile building and improving trust on the Internet.”

According to Kaarel Kotkas, Veriff CEO and founder, it’s exciting to welcome Guy to Veriff’s team. “Guy brings over 20 years of sales, sales leadership, and building world-class sales and customer success teams globally to Veriff. He has lots of experience in opening new offices, market expansion and that’s what he is also going to focus on in Veriff. Together with Guy we can turn Veriff into a verb the fastest.”

Zerega started at Stack Overflow eight years ago being the employee number 38. Over the years, he built the company’s sales team from 3 to 135 people with three revenue streams. He has sold products and services in many different environments ranging from start-ups to the Fortune 50 companies. Under his leadership, Stack Overflow also opened overseas offices in London and Munich. 

“I am looking forward to doing the same at Veriff, it’s super exciting. Opening the New York office and setting up a sales team in the US is a crucial first step for the further global expansion,” Zerega added. 

Stack Overflow is a programmer-specific Q&A portal, where developers can ask their programming related questions by combining the idea of a Q&A site with voting and editing. With more than its 10 million users, Stack Overflow has grown into a trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

About Veriff

Veriff is a global online verification company that protects businesses and their customers from online identity fraud by making sure that a person is who they claim to be. With the help of artificial intelligence, Veriff analyses thousands of technological and behavioural variables in seconds, verifying people from 190+ countries. Founded in 2015, Veriff serves a global portfolio of internet businesses including fintech companies, sharing economy providers and marketplaces in London, New York, San Francisco, Berlin, Vienna, and other major cities. Veriff is an alumnus of the startup accelerator Y Combinator and has raised €7.35m ($8.3m) in funding. Veriff employs over 300 people in Tallinn, Estonia. 

GRENKE launches new ‘Solutions’ strategy in UK

  • New company promise is ‘Fast. Forward. Finance.’
  • GRENKE becoming fastest growing financing specialist in the UK due to new solutions approach.
  • Customer centric and consultative, providing businesses across the UK access to a mixture of financial solutions ideally suited to their business challenges.

Guildford, 11 November 2019 – 2019 has certainly been the year for GRENKE. Launching its new brand, website and solutions sales approach, GRENKE is realising its mission to combine innovative finance solutions with speed, simplicity and shared entrepreneurship.

As the fastest growing asset finance company in the UK, the company has opened 10 branches in 12 years, with its 11th opening in Newcastle in 2020 and their headcount growing a third in the last year.

Additionally, the long term commitment has also seen a Head Office move into a new larger premises, three times its predecessor. The significantly increased space allows GRENKE to also introduce their first apprenticeship scheme in 2020, with 6 placements. A key investment for their business future, encouraging young talent to learn from specialist Sales and Administration Teams.

What has been the key to their ongoing growth? Firstly, the placement of its new Managing Director of Sales, David Horton in 2018, who focused on simplifying the sales strategy. He ensured that GRENKE maximised the use of new sales platforms to increase the sales team engagement with the customers and leads. He also increased the diversification of the assets that GRENKE currently finance – opening up to new markets and resellers.

Secondly, the roll out of GRENKE’s new solutions approach. Seeing the business working collaboratively across business units and offering businesses a fully rounded service  to help realise their plans.

Their fresh design, state-of-the-art website provides clear orientation towards customer-focused solutions, with the financing specialist preparing for dynamic developments in the fields of digitalisation and automation.

‘Our new brand promise “Fast. Forward. Finance.” places added value for our customer’s front and centre. At GRENKE, resellers and organisations can find everything they need to cover their financing requirements – whether leasing or factoring – in a whole range of different situations. This means that they can benefit even more comprehensively than ever before from GRENKE solutions.’ David Horton – Managing Director Sales.

On the new website, resellers and potential customers can now find solutions tailored to precisely the challenges they face. This is why GRENKE has developed typical case scenarios that effectively address the specific needs of different target groups, for example from the service sector, retail, trade, healthcare and manufacturing industries.

Despite the evolution of its brand, digital solutions and sales approach, the financing specialist is continuing to emphasis the value of close relationships. This benefits not only resellers, customers and employees, but also shareholders and investors.

Their strategy for the future? Make it even easier for Companies of all sizes to put their creative ideas into practice – without having to worry about complex financing. GRENKE will take care of their business finance needs so they can focus on boosting their business – regardless of which industry they come from.

About GRENKE Group

The GRENKE Group is a global financing partner for companies of all sizes. As a one-stop shop for customers, GRENKE’s products range from flexible small-ticket leasing and demand-driven bank products to convenient factoring. Fast and easy processing and personal contact with customers and partners are at the centre of GRENKE’s activities.

Founded in 1978 in Baden-Baden, the Company operates in 32 countries and employs more than 1,600 staff worldwide. GRENKE UK founded in 2002, based in Guildford, Surrey and employs more than 100 staff.

GRENKE shares are listed in the MDAX on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (ISIN DE000A161N30).

Further information about GRENKE and its products is available at www.grenke.co.uk

100% of banking and finance bosses say they act on employee feedback

But trouble is brewing as only two-thirds of staff believe it ever happens

Nottingham, UK, 13th November 2019: 100% of the UK’s banking and finance employers claim to act on staff feedback, but only 67% of employees agree, research by People First, the HR solutions provider, has found.

Exploring the attitudes of 250 bosses and 250 employees across the UK, the research found just two-thirds (66%) of staff believe their bosses measure their satisfaction, even though 95% of employers claim to.

The research also revealed a growing sense of disconnection among new entrants to the workforce with only 50% of 18-24s believing feedback leads to action.

In addition, only 56% of employers in the banking and finance sector report the results of employee feedback monitoring to the wider company. More than seven-in-ten (71%) of those acting on what employees tell them say they do so at board level only.

“Trouble is brewing because although employers say they put feedback into action, it doesn’t ring true with workforces,” said Mark Williams, Senior Vice President Product, People First. “This is just not good enough. Feedback needs to translate into action.

“If there is no feedback loop, it can do more harm than good, annoying employees and discouraging them from taking part in future.”

Indicating the importance of principles and beliefs among workers, the research found nearly half the workforce (49%) will accept or reject a job on values. The figure rises to more than three-quarters (67%) of Gen Z respondents.

Eight-in-ten bosses (80%) measure employee satisfaction through employee surveys, while 61% use structured review meetings. More than half (53%) use informal conversations and exactly half use focus groups.

“Banks and financial institutions don’t just need to listen to and understand employees so they can pick up warning signs of disenchantment, they must act on feedback,” added Williams. “An ad-hoc approach is no good. That’s the same for gauging how employees feel about their own work and the company’s values and for putting that feedback into practice.

“This is an area that companies must tackle head-on in a much more thought-out and systematic manner, taking time to deploy the most effective and appropriate solutions to nurture employees throughout their time with a company.”

Pound boost as hung parliament and Corbyn risks reduce on Farage-Johnson pact

11 November 2019

The pound will receive a welcome boost after Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party will not be pitted against Conservatives in almost 320 seats in next month’s election, affirms the boss of one of the world’s largest independent financial organisations.

The upbeat message from Nigel Green, founder and CEO of deVere Group comes as the Brexit Party’s leader Nigel Farage will stand aside in all 317 seats won by the Conservatives in the 2017 general election, fighting only seats held by other parties in the 12 December general election.

Mr Green notes: “Nigel Farage has given the Prime Minister a massive boost in the election as he stands down candidates from his Brexit Party.

“In turn, this will give a welcome boost to the Brexit-battered pound, which has consistently been something of a Brexit bellwether.”

He continues: “The move reduces the likelihood of another hung parliament, which would have led to more parliamentary paralysis and more crippling delays on Brexit.  

“All of this would have generated yet more, intensified uncertainty – something financial markets loathe.  This is why the pound has jumped on the news of the informal Johnson-Farage pact.

“Looking ahead, a Conservative majority would give the government the enhanced ability to move on with the Brexit process. 

“Wealth, jobs and opportunity-generating businesses – both in the UK and internationally – have been crying out for certainty. There is the hope a majority government could lift the fog of Brexit that’s been hampering investment and confidence.

“Should a Conservative majority be returned next month, I believe that the pound will reach $1.35.”

Mr Green goes on to add: “The pound will also be given a boost as the agreement is a serious hammer blow for Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party.

“His anti-business rhetoric, and high tax and low-profit policies would lead to considerable and sustained selling of the pound.”

Last week, the deVere CEO noted: “I believe we can realistically expect a Corbyn government would trigger an exodus of the country’s most successful and wealthiest individuals who contribute significantly both directly and indirectly to the British economy.”

Nigel Green concludes: “Sterling’s outlook will become increasingly bullish over the next few weeks if the Conservatives continue to do well in the polls in the run-up to the election.”

GDP growth at slowest for a decade

Could SME growth catalyse an economic surge?

Leading SME investment experts – IW Capital and the UKBAA – discusses the importance of supporting thesmall business economy.

It has been announced today that Britain’s economic growth rate has reached its lowest level in almost a decade, after the ONS announced that year-on-year growth fell to 1%. However, a narrowing trade deficit fueled by growing exports of both goods and services offered encouragement for firms trading outside the UK. What more can be done to ensure that the UK’s globally facing private sector will provide the growht and ambition to thrive and support a growing economy?
 
SMEs make up 99.9% of private sector businesses and so supporting entrepreneurs to start businesses as well as providing vital growth finance is clearly of the utmost importance to the overall health of the UK economy. Small firms also employ over 16million people in the UK and has recently grown at a faster rate than the overall job market.

Luke Davis, CEO of IW Capital, reacts to the news:

“The small business community and its success is as important to the economy as any change in Government in the near future. With an economic contribution of over £2trillion, the success of the UK economy as a whole may in future hinge on the prosperity of SMEs, start-ups and high-growth firms. There are a fantastic range of innovative, growing SMEs that we work with that are likely to drive our private sector forward in the coming years. And it certainly seems that private equity, through routes such as the Enterprise Investment Scheme, as well as other alternative finance options will be key to the business community in the future of a growing economy.

“As entrepreneurs and investors look to capitalise on new opportunities that are bound to exist in the next few years, growth finance will be key to making the most of that. The predicted growth of the economy should be marked as a statement of intent by investors looking to support small businesses that make up our fantastic SME arena and wider private sector economy.”

Jenny Tooth OBE – CEO of the UK Business Angels Association said:

“The SME sector is full of ambitious entrepreneurs looking to ignite economic growth in their respective regions within the UK. With SMEs making up 99.9% of all businesses in the UK, it is essential that they continue to deliver vital growth. With manufacturing output decreasing, we need to make sure that small businesses in other sectors are given the full confidence they need to continue to thrive.  Although we may be going through murky political waters, the business community of the UK must stand together. Investors, whether they be institutional or private, such as angel investing, have never been so important to the sustainability of British SMEs.”

Congrid promotes the development of PropTech in Finland and internationally

Congrid promotes the development of PropTech in Finland and internationally

RecoTech is an event focusing on key technological innovations in the real estate and construction industry in the Nordic countries. This official side-event of SLUSH will be arranged on 20 November at the Train Factory in the Vallila district of Helsinki. The event is jointly organized by RAKLI, PropTech Finland, Nordic PropTech Initiative and Rond Production House

RecoTech is an event focusing on key technological innovations in the real estate and construction industry in the Nordic countries. This official side-event of SLUSH will be arranged on 20 November at the Train Factory in the Vallila district of Helsinki. The event is jointly organized by RAKLI, PropTech Finland, Nordic PropTech Initiative and Rond Production House. Commercialisation of new business models and technologies is vital for the whole industry. Property industry technology, PropTech in brief, is emerging as a new hit investment target among capital investors. PropTech refers to the technology applications and platforms that link innovative technology services, service providers and users. PropTech makes information more easily accessible and enables its sharing in digital formats, which improves data flow and transparency. Congrid wants to promote PropTech development in Finland and internationally. The company has developed a software platform for the management of quality and safety in construction projects. Congrid’s software improves data flow and cooperation on construction sites by making the required information available to all the project parties in real time. Congrid’s goal is to promote quality management in building projects through information, enabling the various project parties to understand what was built and why. The purpose of RecoTech is to showcase PropTech expertise and key trends and innovations of the industry to businesses, start-ups, investors and professionals in the industry. An increasing number of PropTech companies come from Finland, as according to a survey by Unissu, the number of PropTech start-ups in Finland is the highest in Europe on a per capita basis. Congrid participates in the ReCoTech event for the third time and in cooperation with PropTech Finland. In addition to Congrid, other participants in PropTech Finland’s event stand include GBuilder, Exquance, Frostberry, Chaos, Cityfier, Assetti, Duuers, Hyperin, Realx and Realsource. The event features major players and influencers in the industry as keynote speakers, including Mike Butcher of TechCrunch, David Malott of AI Space Factory and Bruce Oreck, former US Ambassador to Finland. About Congrid: Congrid was founded in 2013 by a team of construction site managers who had become frustrated with the use of pen, paper and Excel-files to control the quality and safety of construction sites. Congrid’s cloud-based software offers users one platform to handle quality and safety management on any construction project, reducing quality costs, improving safety and maximising site productivity. Customers include major developers, construction firms, contractors and subcontractors in the Nordic region. www.congrid.com.

Commercialisation of new business models and technologies is vital for the whole industry. Property industry technology, PropTech in brief, is emerging as a new hit investment target among capital investors. PropTech refers to the technology applications and platforms that link innovative technology services, service providers and users. PropTech makes information more easily accessible and enables its sharing in digital formats, which improves data flow and transparency. 

Congrid wants to promote PropTech development in Finland and internationally. The company has developed a software platform for the management of quality and safety in construction projects. Congrid’s software improves data flow and cooperation on construction sites by making the required information available to all the project parties in real time. Congrid’s goal is to promote quality management in building projects through information, enabling the various project parties to understand what was built and why.

The purpose of RecoTech is to showcase PropTech expertise and key trends and innovations of the industry to businesses, start-ups, investors and professionals in the industry. An increasing number of PropTech companies come from Finland, as according to a survey by Unissu, the number of PropTech start-ups in Finland is the highest in Europe on a per capita basis. 

Congrid participates in the ReCoTech event for the third time and in cooperation with PropTech Finland. In addition to Congrid, other participants in PropTech Finland’s event stand include GBuilderExquanceFrostberryChaosCityfierAssettiDuuersHyperinRealx and Realsource

The event features major players and influencers in the industry as keynote speakers, including Mike Butcher of TechCrunch, David Malott of AI Space Factory and Bruce Oreck, former US Ambassador to Finland. 

About Congrid

Congrid was founded in 2013 by a team of construction site managers who had become frustrated with the use of pen, paper and Excel-files to control the quality and safety of construction sites. Congrid’s cloud-based software offers users one platform to handle quality and safety management on any construction project, reducing quality costs, improving safety and maximising site productivity. Customers include major developers, construction firms, contractors and subcontractors in the Nordic region. www.congrid.com.