Digital SME lender Mynt challenges “Big Banks” in Sweden

Posted on

Last January, during FinDec’s launch party, I had a pleasure to meet Baltsar Sahlin (picture left), CEO of fintech Mynt, which provides loans for small businesses.

Baltsar said that in 2019, Mynt will focus on their product and will need more input on PR and customer communication and together with Blockchain PR, would be ready to reach a bigger consumer-base beyond Sweden.

So, welcome Mynt to the Blockchain PR family!

Mynt app

Baltsar and his team started Mynt in 2017 because small businesses shy away from seeking financial support in the traditional banking system due to slow application processes and high service fees. Mynt came to cater to those seeking a digital, fast and fair way to get business funding.

Here is a quick interview with Baltsar:

Ana Paula: So Baltsar, Mynt provides loans for small businesses but how is Mynt different from other fintech companies providing the same service?

Baltsar: We allow companies to get a revolving credit, all online in our system. There is no other service like ours, that can give a small business a revolving line of credit, in Sweden, or Europe for that matter. We can integrate our service in accounting systems or invoicing systems. Our platform is built ground up and is easy to integrate. Mynt is aiming to be the most automated product there is for small business financing.


“Mynt is aiming to be the most automated product there is for small business financing. “

Baltsar Sahlin, CEO at Mynt

AP: Being a small business owner myself, I’m always looking for financial products that offer lower interest rates, how does Mynt positions itself?

B: We are a cheaper than other traditional lending institutions offering small business loans – thanks to our data driven credit scoring. There are about 50 or so companies doing invoice financing or business loans. We can remove companies that are not creditworthy with our algorithms, and in return offer better and fairer rates for companies that do qualify for a loan.

AP: Applying for a loan is always a daunting process but you mentioned that all the credit scoring and application process are done online which makes it much easier – How does that work?

B: We have a product, that allows companies to be in control. While we are happy to talk to our clients and potential clients, we also have a fully digital product that lets the company do everything themselves if they want. You can sign up and get a credit within 3 minutes, all online in our system.

For more about Mynt click here

Main picture: Mynt team

Fintech + Decentralized: community hub FinDec launches in Sweden

Posted on

For years, Sweden has dominated the global innovation landscape and it is no different with the ongoing technological revolution where companies like Klarna and iZettle were put on the map. Although, Sweden has attracted two-thirds of the Nordic fintech investments, there hasn’t been a comprehensive national ecosystem.

This January, FinDec came to life as a physical and digital gathering place for Sweden’s fintech community, aiming to build a stronger ecosystem. The name FinDec is a reference to “Fintech” and “Decentralized” and will support fintech in general, including verticals for Regtech, Insurtech and Blockchain. Even before the launch, about 50 affiliated startups and established players have signed up, and strategic partnerships have been established with Helsinki Fintech Farm, Oslo Fintech Hub and Copenhagen Fintech.

Behind FinDec are industry veterans with extensive experience from the financial sector and tech industry. Among these are Mats Holmfeldt (Paynova, Resurs, Intrum, Swedbank, SEB), Anette Nordvall (business angel), Lars Arvidson (Ericsson), Stig Johansson (Finansinspektionen), and blockchain experts Daniel Zachrisson and Jens Frid to name a few.

In addition to coming investments in co-working, offices and physical gatherings, Findec will also launch a digital platform during the first quarter in order to be able to service all companies in the country with the same information and accessibility to networks, events, reports, mentors, advisors and investors.

Blockchain PR is a starting a content collab with FinDec

For more info about FinDec click here

Main photo: FinDec’s launch party at Embassy House

Malta Blockchain Summit: 8,500 attendees ignited the blockchain island

Posted on

I was proud to take part of the Malta Blockchain Summit with Blockchain PR – The summit was a huge success, here is a quick summary of the event.

The inaugural edition of the Malta Blockchain Summit has been a resounding triumph. Held on the 1st to 2nd November, at the Intercontinental Hotel, St. Julian’s – the Summit saw intense interest, from both local and global quarters, with 8,500 attendees turning up for the event.
The success of the show means the Summit will likely move to a larger venue better equipped to handle the scale of a growing Summit.

The Summit marked its entry as a key player on the island’s blockchain calendar, with the official launch of Malta’s DLT regulation acts announced during the Regulatory Conference. The three pieces of legislation moved swiftly through parliament, with approval conferred in July and August, before officially coming into effect on the first day of the Summit.

The new DLT regulation bills to mark Malta’s induction to a global hall of fame as the Blockchain Island are: the Malta Digital Innovation Authority Bill, Innovative Technology Arrangements and Services Bill, and the Virtual Financial Asset Bill.

The launch of the bills comes in tandem with relocation from major players in the crypto sphere, such as Binance, OKEx and ZBX, and government promise to make the aptly dubbed Blockchain Island a hub for blockchain excellence.

John McAfee and Sophia

With notable denizens of the industry, such as cryptocurrency evangelist and business guru, John McAfee, blockchain father and co-founder, W. Scott Stornetta, Hanson Robotics creation, Sophia the humanoid robot, and the Honourable Joseph Muscat, Prime Minister of Malta, addressing riveted audiences, the summit carried an aura of prestige and quality.

“I came to talk about the early work that we did, laying the foundations pre-Bitcoin for the blockchain. It is a little frenzied and very crowded. I think they succeeded a little too well in attracting people here.” said W. Scott Stornetta.

“I think it is an excellent summit. The quality of the attendees and the people presenting is excellent, it is well organised. Eman Pulis, the Founder of the Malta Blockchain Summit, is tremendous. But basically I came, so that I could talk, which I did. I want to tell the world, as I see it.” said John McAfee.

A competitive Hackathon for developers was overseen by a panel of some of the most influential movers and shakers in the industry. The judging table made place for esteemed individuals such as Scott Stornetta, Charles Hoskinson, Ilya Smagin, and Lucas Park.  

Blockchain Charity Lottery took first place and a coveted prize of €25, 000, with TPass and Tensegrity coming in at second and third place and winning €15,000 and €10,000 respectively.

A heated ICO Pitch lit up the stage on both days of the Summit, as 35 ICO’s battled it out for invaluable mentorship from a line-up of savvy investors, industry exposure and a share of the $100,000 prize. Startups Rise and AEToken took first and second place on Day 1 and Tatau and GoMama grabbing the crown on the second day of the Pitch.

A new government AI strategy was announced during a press conference held at the Malta Blockchain Summit. The Junior Minister for Financial Services, Digital Economy and Innovation, Hon. Silvio Schembri launched a task force which will design a national strategy on AI and explore a citizenship test for robots – placing Malta amongst the top 10 nations in the world to do so.  Malta.ai will work in collaboration with SingularityNet, the company behind Sophia, the humanoid robot’s AI.

The Summit ended with a number of lavish dinners, a spectacular closing night event and a grand evening tour of Malta’s fortified harbour during the Crypto Cruise.

Eman Pulis

“I wish to thank everyone who attended the Malta Blockchain Summit for the overwhelming feedback! This week the Blockchain community accepted me and my team as part of the family. I look forward to contribute and help drive this technology forward by doing what I love the most – events!” said Eman Pulis commenting on the monumental success of the Malta Blockchain Summit.

 

 

 

Main photo: Malta’s Prime minister Joseph Muscat opening the conference.

www.maltablockchainsummit.com

3 easy points to understand what makes Malta the “Blockchain island”

Posted on

Malta has earned a well-deserved title of “Blockchain island” –  it is the first jurisdiction in the world to introduce blockchain regulations. The Maltese government views the blockchain technology as a whole, while other countries are typically looking at crypto and blockchain for short-term gains.  It’s fair to say that Malta legislators understand what the blockchain technology can offer in the long run.

In July 2018 when the Maltese parliament passed the regulatory bills, Silvio Schembri, Junior Minister for Financial Services, tweeted:

These 3 bills provide comprehensive legal framework that addresses a number of problems faced by the industry. But what are they and what makes them such special piece of legislation? Here is a quick summary of each bill:

The first one is the Malta Digital Innovation Authority Act (MDIA Act), and it establishes the Malta Digital Innovation Authority and certifies DLT platforms. This law will focus on internal governance arrangements and will outline the duties and responsibilities of the Authority to certify DLT platforms to ensure credibility and provide legal certainty to users wishing to make use of a DLT platform.

The second is the Innovative Technology Arrangement and Services Act (ITAS Act), deals with DLT arrangements and certifications of DLT platforms. This bill is primarily concerned with the setting up of exchanges and other companies operating in the cryptocurrency market.

And the third law, known as the Virtual Financial Assets Act (VFA Act), establishes the regulatory regime governing ICOs, cryptocurrency exchanges, wallet providers, etc.

Additionally, these bills reflect the European Union (EU) laws onto Maltese laws.  There are 3 basic core principles that the bills abide to – market integrity, consumer protection and industry protection. The main difference here  is that the bills have a principles-based approach, rather than a rules-based approach. Hopefully, they will flourish amidst a highly-unregulated environment.

That is why Malta is so attractive to the biggest players in the industry, hence Binance and OKEx already set up shop there.

Blockchain PR is at the Malta Blockchain Summit

Follow Ana Paula Picasso Twitter and LinkedIn for live updates

 

Blockchain PR teams up with ICO advisory firm VOX

Posted on

It’s been less than one month since I launched Blockchain PR and there are some exciting news on the horizon – I’m proud to team up with startup and ICO advisory firm VOX.

To me it seemed like a natural progression, and here is why. I started Blockchain PR because companies that use the blockchain technology need a specialized marketing strategy. Companies need someone that understands their needs and the dynamic of the sector.

New ICO projects are created everyday and fundraising is a big challenge. That’s why my partnership with VOX makes sense – they will come in with their advisory expertise. By outsourcing your fundraising to us you will jump the hurdles of finding relevant investors.

“At VOX we believe that startups are the cornerstone of innovation. ICO is simply one way to attract investments, so we are agnostic: both equities or tokens are valid and valuable approaches”, adds Stefano Virgilli, CEO at VOX.

VOX has a dedicated team to contact and engage investors, crypto funds, venture capitals and funds all over the world. With over 2000 outgoing messages per months, they are able to pitch your project (both startup and ICO) to at least 30 interested parties every 4 weeks. This is not a sales team, but an investor relations group.

For more information, contact us here

Main photo: Stefano Virgilli at VOX Singapore