Top tech startup news stories you need to know this Tuesday, July 31
Good morning! Here are some of the top tech startup news stories for today, Tuesday, July 31.
Jack Ma’s giant financial startup Ant Financial is disrupting the Chinese banking system. Ant Financial, formerly known as Alipay, is an affiliate company of the Chinese Alibaba Group, is transforming how Chinese run their daily finances. It was founded by Jack Ma in 2014. Ant, according to Stella Yifan Xie of the Wall Street Journal, “has become the world’s biggest financial-technology firm, driving innovations that let people use their phones for buying insurance as easily as groceries, enabling millions to go weeks at a time without using physical cash.” Its online payments platform completed more than $8 trillion of transactions last year—the equivalent of more than twice Germany’s gross domestic product. It’s currently valued at $150 billion.
Blockchain startup Ultrain raises $20 million at $200 million valuation. Ultrain, the next generation public-blockchain technology venture, has raised a $20 million for the development of Ultrain technology and business ecosystem, and the building of global community. Founded in 2017, Ultrain is a next generation public-blockchain technology venture that focuses on building a high performance decentralized blockchain platform through its programmable tech-infrastructure. The startup is now valued at $200 million. The funding was led by top global venture capital firms and crypto funds, including Danhua Capital (DHVC), Sky9 Capital, FBG Capital, Ceyuan Venture, 8 Decimal Capital, and others.
Crypto startup Coinbase hires first chief compliance officer to legitimize crypto in the eyes of institutional investors and regulators. Coinbase, the popular cryptocurrency trading platform, has hired Pershing veteran Howowitz, formerly global head of compliance at Pershing. The hire is “one more important step” to legitimizing crypto in the eyes of institutional investors and regulators who have been hesitant about security and headline risks. Coinbase said the hire reflects its commitment to compliance, as well as its recognition that companies require seasoned teams to deal with regulatory requirements in different countries.Before Pershing, Horowitz led compliance and anti money laundering programs at Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, and Salomon Brothers, and was a banking regulator with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
Massachusetts startup Willow launches online brand for adult diapers. According to estimate, people in the U.S. spend about $4 billion on adult diapers every year. Founded by Will Herlands, Willow is a Somerville, Massachusetts-based startup that is aiming to adopt the strategy of direct-to-consumer brands like Warby Parker and Dollar Shave Club to an overlooked segment of consumers–older adults struggling with incontinence or lack of voluntary control over urination or defecation. Willow is scheduled to launch its website and online marketing campaign on Tuesday.
Bitcoin mining startup Bitmain reports a net profit of $1.1 billion in just 3 months (Q1 2018). Bitmain Technologies (Bitmain), the Beijing, China-based manufacturer of Bitcoin mining hardware and other related services, reported a net profit of $1.1 billion in the first quarter of 2018, according to report from Fortune and Bloomberg citing an email obtained from a source close to the company. Reaping huge profit is not new to the company. Back in 2017, the company posted an eye-popping returns in 2017.