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The Economic Times has published new findings that suggest that investment funds are now most interested in business-to-business (B2B) fintech startups due to their strong foundational metrics such as profitability, unit level of economics and customer acquisition costs.
Fintech startups apparently understand the tightening requirements for those with funds to invest, and that investors no longer are willing to pump capital into big ideas, but are looking for more solid business fundamentals, so have tweaked themselves to cater to these requirements.
In the past two years, significant investments have been made into B2B fintech and now, more are looking to tap into that type of funding. Online credit startups have been the big winners since mid-2018, but there are now others in the sectors of treasury management, supply chain as well as corporate pay roll.
This urgent need for startups to scale up are also timely, as the non-banking financial crisis (NBFC) in India creeps into online lending companies, while digital payment solutions eat up into fundings without clearing a way to profitability.
According to treasury management firm IBSFintech‘s founder CM Grover, Indian B2B startups take longer to scale, have niche business sectors and do not grow exponentially, but are very attractive to investors because they have taken the time to develop strong technology platforms, can scale faster globally and can turn profitable with less funding than consumer startups:
“Within the B2B space, fintech is transforming into a lucrative area for the investors community and Indian startups are attracting global funds.”
“Venture capitalists and other investors are focused on the rate of addition of new businesses, revenue growth from existing clients and their stickiness.”
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The Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) courts have reported they will be collaborating with the government supported Smart Dubai initiative to form a task force with a goal to implement a blockchain platform that enhances the country’s legal system.
The project has been dubbed the ‘Court of Blockchain‘, with the government concluding that decentralization would benefit the legal system by streamlining the sector and easing the protocol for sharing information. It hopes to build the network itself on a blockchain, utilizing smart contracts for courts to share data. The need for such time-consuming tasks as document duplication will be eliminated, the DIFC said.
A press release regarding the task force cites the future of the two partners as handling public and private blockchain disputes, as well as verifying regulatory and contractual terms of smart contracts, utilizing their combined expertise.
The first steps for the partnership will include research and development to configure court data onto the blockchain, allowing real-time authentication for institutions in order to improve communication efficiency between actors across the legal system.
The DIFC is the primary entity that handles civil and commercial financial disputes relating to Dubai.
The Smart Dubai initiative
The task force is part of the country’s Smart Dubai initiative, a plan to push the emirate to the forefront of technological innovation. Pursuing the various use cases for blockchain is a big part of the research; the Smart Dubai Office’s director general, Dr Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr, said that it plans to run ”100% of applicable government transactions on blockchain by 2020“.
Dr Bishr acknowledged that such a strategy would require strong institutions to uphold such disruptive policies, noting that the partnership with DIFC courts would help support the changes. She described the completed blockchain legal platform as ”the world’s first disruptive court”, boldly stating this as a pursuit of the true power of blockchain technology.
The Smart Dubai initiative is set to position the country as a global technology leader by 2020.
Another aspect of the strategy includes Dubai’s tourism business to business blockchain marketplace Tourism 2.0, which connects businesses in the tourism sector with one another across the country.
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