Private Equity – How to balance risks versus opportunities

Private Equity – How to balance risks versus opportunities This year’s Oxford Symposium (13-14 December) on Risk Management in Private Equity asks how investors can balance risks versus opportunities in order to maximize risk-adjusted returns – in other words, risk management as a value add. This article gives insights into the focus topics of the symposium and provides food for thought to investors on how to maximize risk-adjusted returns.     Mind the... [more]

Brexit – The great disorder under the Heavens?

Brexit – The great disorder under the Heavens? It looks that the financial industry bet the wrong way on the biggest market event since the 2008 financial crisis. The Brexit referendum’s outcome has already been called ‘the greatest Black Swan event of the millennium’ (personally, I believe that this unexpected result rather falls into the category of what we practitioners refer to in our daily work as ‘king... [more]

Trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit

Trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit   Private equity is estimated to be less than 2% of all assets managed internationally. It is – at least in theory – an inherently contrarian asset class. But being countercyclical and contrarian is difficult. For illustration, a few days ago I read an article that predicted the ‘denominator effect’ to return. The news was dated April 1st, so I... [more]

The Private Equity Risk Stalemate

The Private Equity Risk Stalemate Recently I had a longer debate with the founder of a software company who argued that there is no market for sophisticated solutions (like value-at-risk) for quantifying private equity risks. I respect this person’s experience and judgment and, sadly, I tend to agree. I use the word ‘sadly’ as risk management (in the sense of balancing threats versus opportunities) is... [more]

Three Things to Remember when Investing in Quants: an Interview with Michael Richter

Three Things to Remember when Investing in Quants: an Interview with Michael Richter High net worth individual investor and 40 year financial services veteran Michael Richter shares his insights about due diligence on quants. Three things to remember when investing in quants Operational due diligence - how does your manager segregate controls Half lives, hypotheses and what to look out for before you invest Ask these questions when getting into the black box The... [more]

Disrupting Foreign Exchange with Blockchain

Disrupting Foreign Exchange with Blockchain Last week Lykke announced a competition to build a new and superfast foreign exchange and settlement platform based on blockchain. Its Swiss founder is Richard B. Olsen. He was a fintech founder long before that buzzword entered our vocabulary. In the eighites, he established a real time financial information system and in the nineties, a Forex trading platform startup that... [more]

Brexit Fears Defied by Fintech Startup Yoyo

Brexit Fears Defied by Fintech Startup Yoyo

The British mobile payment app has defied Brexit fears by fundraising an impressive £12 million. The successful fundraising round also highlights the strength in venture capital investment, according to the Financial Times who broke the story on Monday. The fundraising will be aimed at supporting the firm’s European and US expansion.   Big fundraising news for Brexit Britain   There [...]

Australia & Japan to Increase Fintech Cooperation

Australia & Japan to Increase Fintech ...

Australian financial authorities have announced a completion of a framework that will see them start cooperating with their Japanese counterparts. The framework is aimed at promoting innovation in the financial services sector, bringing the fintech sector in both countries ever closer to each other.   Details of the cooperation agreement   The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) announced the [...]

Private Equity Investment Up by 64% in India

Private Equity Investment Up by 64% in India

Private equity investment in India is booming, according to the latest report by Grant Thornton. The report shows PE investment jumped by 64% in value terms in May. The region attracted $663 million worth of private equity investment during the month, driven by big-ticket investments.   Deal value improving, but deal numbers declining   While the deal value increased in [...]

How Are European Banks Investing in Fintech?

How Are European Banks Investing in Fintech?

CB Insights’ research in European banks investment in fintech makes an interesting read. The research company analysed private market fintech investments by assets under management all the way from 2012 to the current year and noticed banks are keen on fintech investments. With the current rate of investing, funding in European-based fintech firms might surpass $2.6 billion this year.   [...]

Private Equity Struggling to Raise Funds in the Middle East

Private Equity Struggling to Raise Funds in the ...

Private equity and venture capital funds are not performing strongly in the Middle East, according to the latest reporting. MENA Private Equity Association published its annual report, which shows a 41% drop in private equity and venture capital funds last year. In terms of the region’s winner, UAE attracted the most interest from private equity funds.   The report’s findings [...]

Could France Become Europe’s Innovation Hub?

Could France Become Europe’s Innovation Hub?

The French voted Emmanuel Macron for president earlier in May. The young and progressive Macron managed to excite the French and not least the financial sector. Macron’s background in finance and his passion for technology has led many to believe big things are about to happen in France’s fintech sector. Could the country become Europe’s innovation hub, especially as Britain [...]

Report: Returns Tighten for Private Equity

Report: Returns Tighten for Private Equity

The latest Global Private Equity Barometer shows private equity returns to have decreased from last year. Coller Capital’s reporting also shows private equity investors believe fintech opportunities will continue to increase in the future. However, investors don’t seem impressed by blockchain technology.   Returns are diminishing   According to the report, 62% of surveyed private equity investors earned a net [...]

The European Commission to Reboot its CMU Plan

The European Commission to Reboot its CMU Plan

The European Commission has revealed it would be rebooting its Capital Markets Union (CMU) plan. The Commission hopes it will strengthen Europe’s financial systems at a time when Brexit is looming over the continent.   The CMU was originally adopted in 2015 with the aim of helping businesses access investment across European border. There were 33 measures in the original [...]

Plynk Raises €25m and Plans to Expand Outside Ireland

Plynk Raises €25m and Plans to Expand Outside ...

Irish money messaging app Plynk has secured €25 million in its recent Series A round. The investment round was led by Swiss Privée Ltd, which is a private investment trust. The fintech firm’s next step is to launch the product in the UK and Europe.   The fundraising round   The €25 million investment round was led by the Swizz [...]

Can Fintech Conquer the B2B Sector?

Can Fintech Conquer the B2B Sector?

When it comes to investing in the financial sector, venture capital and private equity have long been less keen on interesting in B2B companies. But McKinsey & Co’s latest research suggest things might be changing and investors are now targeting financing solution for both buyers and suppliers, together with automated account management tools. Can fintech conquer the B2B sector?   [...]

Fintech’s New Challenger Bank Raises £32m

Fintech’s New Challenger Bank Raises £32m

Fintech is set to change the financial industry and it’s been especially focused on changing the traditional forms of banking. The online peer-to-peer lender Zopa has taken another crucial step to disrupting the traditional banking sector by raising £32 million. Zopa is preparing to launch its challenger bank and taking the fight directly to the old guard.   Wadhawan Global [...]

Mid-Market M&A Pricing In Europe Increasing

Mid-Market M&A Pricing In Europe Increasing

According to the Argos Mid-Market Index, the price for mid-market companies in Europe is on the increase. Mid-market M&A pricing rose by 1.2% in the first quarter of 2017. Private equity funds were paying increasingly high prices in these situations, states the index collected by Epsilon Research and Argos Soditic.   What does the index show?   According to the [...]

Malaysia Opens a Fintech Sandbox

Malaysia Opens a Fintech Sandbox

Malaysia is ramping up its forces in the global race for the newest fintech innovation. The Asian country has launched its first fintech sandbox with the help of the central bank. The regulatory sandbox will be open to both foreign and local startups.   Enhancing its fintech sector   Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) had earlier started focusing its efforts in [...]

Japanese Lender to Launch a Fintech Venture

Japanese Lender to Launch a Fintech Venture

Traditional financial service firms are playing catch-up. The world is changing around them thanks to fintech revolution and the firms are trying to hold on. The solution for many has been to be part of the revolution, rather than just watch it go by. The Japanese lender, Mizuho Financial Group, is the latest to throw its hat in the ring. [...]

TransferWise’s Bold Move into Financial Services

TransferWise’s Bold Move into Financial Services

TransferWise has announced it will be introducing a new foreign exchange account. The new ‘Borderless’ account will mark the fintech startup’s first step into financial services and showcases the divergence between disruptive fintech and traditional financial firms.   TransferWise has so far attracted over $116 million in venture capital funding and last May, the fintech startup received a valuation of [...]