Fintech Startup Zeta Looks Forward To Tap Into The Foreign Soil Soon- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

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Co-founded by Bhavin Turakhia (CEO) and Ramki Gaddipati (CTO), Zeta currently provides its platform and products to BFSI issuers in India, Asia and LATAM. Zeta has partnered with banks like RBL Bank, IDFC First Bank, and Kotak Mahindra Bank.
In a detailed interaction with Express Computer’s Gairika Mitra, Bhavin Turakhia, CEO and co-founder, Zeta tells us how technology is continuing to be the backbone of his organisation.
How do you think is the fintech sector going to see an upsurge in the near future?
Fintech is still at a nascent stage in India. You can expect every aspect of banking to expand by the proportion of consumers that they mean to cater. So, when we talk about general purpose lending or payment ecosystems or deposits and investments, all of these require a greater adoption rate. We will see further innovations and increasing growth in these dimensions. The overall Fintech sector in India is on an upward graph.
India is the 2nd largest player in the Fintech space, second only to the US. This has largely been driven by two factors: friendly government policies and a largely untapped market in the country. With a digitally young population like ours, we are witnessing a positive push in the segment and greater opportunities for players to venture into space. Continued efforts by the government and the entrepreneurs will only take us further. 
What is the exclusiveness of your startup, that’s unique from other gigantic players in the market?
Zeta is an umbrella platform that provides full-stack, cloud-native, API first offerings that include a digital core and a payment engine for issuance of credit, debit, and prepaid products. This enables legacy banks and new-age fintech companies to launch modern retail and corporate fintech products. Zeta focuses on enabling fintech platforms, banks, and neo-banking platforms to provide meaningful and innovative services to both the top and bottom of the pyramid.
It facilitates financial services with better information. No banking platform has been built from scratch to service new-age use cases. We have built a universal issuance platform that provides for that, to fundamentally change the way finance will be used. With Zeta, the client gets a strong platform that can help them launch innovative products to cater to various use cases and that is what differentiates us from others in the market.  
What is the latest mode of technology that you are catering to?
Zeta’s purpose is to reinvent core and commercial banking products. Offer modern banking experiences to your customers in the most agile and flexible manner.
Last year we launched Fusion, an API-based Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) offering for fintech. It provides the infrastructure that fintech may need to build financial or payment products in one place. Fusion allows fintech to instantly access a pre-integrated banking ecosystem, which includes access to banks, card networks and manufacturers, payment networks and many more such services critical to building financial products.
This year we launched Tachyon & Cipher in January. Tachyon is a modular, mobile-first, banking platform that enables rapid product deployment, and provides a modern UX that helps banks increase customer engagement, retention and revenue.
On the other hand, Cipher is the most advanced ACS for consumer authentication. It is an elastically scalable solution that enables higher payment success rates. It is future-ready with EMV 3DS certified, along with being scalable and secure. Its various features like Swipe2Pay, SuperPin, Powerful APIs, Advanced SDKs, Superior Integrations and Risk-based Authentication and many more state-of-the-art features. 
Coming to the financial perspective, are you a bootstrapped venture? If not, kindly elucidate on the nature and amount of funding raised.
Zeta has been a bootstrapped company since its inception in 2015. Only in 2019, we raised our first round of strategic investment from Sodexo BRS at a valuation of $300 million.
What are your immediate and long-term milestones like?
Currently, we are looking at growing or business in India. We are also looking at increasing the total headcount to 650 by the end of March 2021, and half of the incremental talent will be hired overseas across functions. We will continue to look at India as a key for its engineering and product development activities, but will also hire talent for this function overseas. At present, we have major banks like Kotak Mahindra Bank, RBL Bank, IDFCFIRST Bank as clients and we are in various stages of conversation with other key players as well. 
Zeta is also looking at expansion in the Southeast Asian markets followed by the US and Europe in time to come.  Watch this space for more!
Lastly, any word of advice for the wannapreneurs?
Entrepreneurs are the future of the world, with more and more bright and creative minds coming into the business, are creating more opportunities and shaping the Indian economy. I have had the opportunity to learn along the way and I still continue to learn from others and their stories. If there is a single piece of advice, I can give to anybody which I believe is to never compromise on the quality of talent that you hire.  Hiring people who have the talent to create their own initiatives is key. I still spend a lot of time myself on recruitment and interviews, and I have three key personal qualities– “smart”; “gets things done”; and “humility-slash-niceness”.
New entrepreneurs should stay focused and believe in their ideas. They should learn to be resilient and keep growing without holding themselves back even if the struggle was tiring. Build a goal and thrive towards it, maintain a disciplined life and it will lead you towards the result you seek.

If you have an interesting article / experience / case study to share, please get in touch with us at [email protected]

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‘Sharia fintech’: Startups race to tap Indonesia growth by aligning with Islam – Finance – Hardware- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Like millions of other Indonesians, Gandi Iswara had for years carried a wad of currency notes for dropping into donation boxes after prayers at mosques in suburban Jakarta.
From late last year, though, the 35-year-old engineer switched to a more convenient option: whipping out his mobile phone, firing up a digital payment app from Google-backed GoPay and tapping the QR code stickers that are now affixed to the boxes.
His digital conversion took some time, as Iswara initially held the view that all rewards and discounts offered by e-wallets conflicted with Islam.
“At first, I thought e-wallets resulted in usury, which is forbidden by Islam. But after a while I found them convenient in daily life,” he said.
Winning over conservative Muslims like Iswara in the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country is both a challenge and multi-billion dollar opportunity for fintech firms that are riding its mobile internet boom and aim to sell financial services.
Of Indonesia’s 270 million population, half lacks bank accounts but most now have mobile phones.
Questions about compliance with Islamic law are a significant hurdle for the adoption of digital payments and other fintech services, industry executives say.
Known as Sharia, the law strictly prohibits charging interest, or “riba”, and clerics in Indonesia disagree on whether the popular cashback rebates and discounts given by digital wallets qualify. Social media videos in Indonesia on whether e-wallets are “haram” – prohibited by Islam – or incorporate “riba” rack up hundreds of thousands of views.
Indonesia’s top Muslim clerical body has even issued an edict deeming virtual money acceptable, as long it met specific conditions.
To showcase the compliance of their services with Islam, fintech firms are organising forums with Islamic scholars and sponsoring religious festivals. Newer startups are tailoring services for Indonesia’s growing body of “born-again” Muslims, known as the “hijrah” movement at home.
GoPay, which is part of ride-hailing firm Gojek, has partnered with the Indonesian Mosque Council since November to enable digital donations, including “zakat”, or compulsory alms giving, in its 800,000 mosques, CEO Aldi Haryopratomo said. “Zakat” alone amounts to over $500 million annually in Indonesia.
“It has made it much easier for people to pay alms,” said Budi, chief administrator of Jakarta’s Istiqlal mosque, the largest in Southeast Asia, referring to digital payments services.
Rival LinkAja, which was formed by a consortium of Indonesia’s top state-owned firms, has launched similar donation efforts. It is now readying LinkAja Sharia, which will offer a range of financial services specifically targeted at conservative Muslims and only accept money from Islamic banks.
Backed by companies including telco Telkomsel and Bank Mandiri, LinkAja is currently seeking to raise $200 million in outside financing, sources told Reuters. The company declined to comment on its funding.
Broadening appeal
The scale of ‘sharia-fintech’ in Indonesia is small, so far, with Islamic fintech startups disbursing about 1 trillion rupiah ($73.15 million) in sharia-compliant loans in 2019, a four-fold increase from 2018, according to the Indonesia Sharia Fintech Association.
But with all forms of Islamic banking accounting for only 6% of Indonesia’s $580 billion in banking assets, there is room for growth.
The sector is also getting a policy push. The country’s vice vice-president, cleric Ma’ruf Amin, took over Indonesia’s Tempemail Islamic Finance Committee in January and has cited the growth of Islamic fintech as a key national priority.
Some of the startups say they are finding their appeal extends beyond Muslims.
One of them is peer-to-peer lender ALAMI, created by three ex-bankers, which has disbursed over $7.5 million in sharia-compliant financing to small and medium enterprises since May, and plans to become a digital bank.
CEO Dima Djani said that although conservative Muslims are its main target, others also are choosing it as an ethical banking option.
“They see the fact we are focused on sharia principles as a sign of integrity,” he told Reuters.
Muhamad Fajrin Rasyid, president of Bukalapak, one of Indonesia’s top e-commerce companies which offers a sharia-compliant investing service, concurs.
“Many of our customers are from other religions,” he said. “Some people tell us that sharia is not only for Muslims, it represents ethical financing.”

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US urges European countries to tap Nokia, Ericsson, and Samsung for their 5G needs – Blog – 10 minute

The big picture: The US is trying to convince its allies in Europe that using Huawei’s 5G tech is no different than using that of its competition, minus the security risks of trusting a company with alleged to the Chinese government.
It’s no secret that the US doesn’t trust Huawei, to the extent that it’s not letting American carriers buy Chinese telecom infrastructure of any kind, including 5G. Earlier this month, the DOJ charged Huawei for racketeering and stealing trade secrets, which made matters even worse.
This week, the US has urged European countries to consider companies like Nokia, Ericsson, and Samsung to cover their 5G needs. During a visit to Lisbon, deputy secretary for communications and information policy Robert Strayer said there’s a misconception out there that Huawei’s 5G tech is more advanced than its competitors’.
The Trump administration says it has evidence that Huawei can access the equipment it has built at any time for spying purposes, while the company defended itself by arguing that the US has a long history of spying.

Strayer told reporters “there is no way to fully mitigate any type of risk except the use of trusted vendors from democratic countries,” adding that manufacturers like Ericsson and Nokia in particular are using an open architecture that ensures better compatibility between equipment built in Europe and the US.
The EU allows member countries to choose what vendors they trust with their 5G infrastructure, and Germany has already said it isn’t worried about Huawei. The UK is no longer a member of the EU, but it also opted to offer Huawei a limited role in its 5G network. Strayer is trying to make a case that countries planning to use equipment from the Chinese tech giant should be prepared to deal with the costs of replacing it in case it is compromised.
Last December, a report found that Huawei has been propelled by no less than $75 billion in incentives from the Chinese government, fuelling more suspicions that the company is operating under the strict control of the latter. The US is on a quest to convince its allies that Huawei can’t be trusted, and it’s even considering the possibility of acquiring significant stakes in companies like Nokia and Ericsson, even though the chances of that happening are slim to none.

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RBA looks to rid Visa, Mastercard of forced routing for tap payments – Finance – Networking- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Australian regulators will consider intervening to stop banks from automatically directing “tap-and-go” card payments through the world’s largest payment processors Visa and Mastercard, the central bank said on Wednesday.
Banks must stop automatically directing debit card payments through the two global networks, and instead give retailers the cheaper option to use local network EFTPOS, Philip Lowe, the governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA), told reporters.
“Regulating here is not the preferred option but it is a fallback option if we don’t see the required change,” he said after a speech in Canberra.
Global card schemes MasterCard and Visa, alongside the major four banks, dominate card payments systems in Australia. EFTPOS is owned by domestic financial institutions and retailers.
The RBA says debit card payments, Australia’s most frequently used method, processed through Visa or Mastercard cost retailers more than twice as much as using EFTPOS.
The retailers’ association estimates this adds up to extra costs of between $300 million and $500 million each year.
“We have made it very clear to the banking industry that we expect them to develop the functionality to allow the merchant to choose which payment rails it goes through, the international schemes or the EFTPOS schemes,” Lowe added.
“If that process doesn’t work then we would have to consider a regulatory solution.”
Visa and Mastercard were not immediately available for comment.
The banks had promised to develop systems to facilitate the cheaper route for retailers, Low said, adding that his preference would be not to have to intervene.
The RBA is reviewing payments regulations to see what strategic issues need to be tackled, from the impact of new payment technologies and new entrants to regulatory technology and an electronic form of banknotes.
“One of the possible reasons for the major banks dragging their feet on least-cost routing is that they each have very extensive relationships with the large international schemes – we will be exploring this in the review,” Tony Richards, the head of payments policy at the RBA, was quoted as saying in the Australian Financial Review on Wednesday.
A spokesman from Commonwealth Bank of Australia declined to comment.
A spokesman for NAB said the bank started letting its merchant customers choose their payment network in April 2018, adding, “We continue to roll out this service across our client base throughout this year.”
Westpac Banking Corp and Australia and New Zealand Banking Group were not immediately available for comment.

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Retailers form fightback group against tap fee gouging – Finance – Hardware – Networking- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

Australia’s already reputationally challenged banking sector is set to cop another caning over poor behaviour and endemic sneaky fee gouging, with four key retail groups moving to publicly shame institutions and card schemes over what they claim are tap-and-go rip-offs.
After a decade of paying steep premiums to accept tap transactions, groups representing grocers, petrol stations, small businesses and high street stores have issued an ultimatum to banks over forced transaction routing, a practice now being effectively banned by the Reserve Bank of Australia.
Dubbed the “Fairer Merchant Fees Alliance”, the formation of the group marks a sharp escalation in ongoing hostilities over how banks and payments providers are increasingly foisting higher costs on businesses now dependent on electronic and online transactions.
The new group comprises the Australian Convenience and Petroleum Marketers Association (ACAPMA), the Australian Retailers Association (ARA), the Council of Small Business Australia (COSBOA) and Master Grocers Australia (MGA).
The broad membership reach of the group means that banks could soon face a highly damaging counter-top campaign similar to those meted by the pharmacy sector and pubs and clubs over regulatory issues that politicians live in fear of.
The group’s main gripe is that even though the RBA has mandated that merchants must now have a say what networks tap transactions get processed by, banks are dragging out upgrades that would allow merchants to choose to default to cheaper payments providers.
Known as ‘Least Cost Routing’ the issue essentially boils down to a fight between local low cost payments stalwart eftpos, Mastercard and Visa and the banks that issue tap cards.
Mastercard and Visa for years pushed the line that tap-and-go was essentially their proprietary payments technology, a myth that was helped along by banks underinvesting in eftpos because the US schemes offered institutions far more transactional clip through steep interchange fees.
It also didn’t help that eftpos came late to the tap-and-go functionality party, by which stage consumers had defaulted to the more convenient payment method over sticking their card in a terminal, selecting an account and then proving a PIN number.
But with plastic cards rapidly moving to glass and digital wallets, the RBA moved relatively to prevent eftpos becoming domestic legacy roadkill in the same way as Australia lost Bankcard to entrants from overseas, giving merchants a definitive say over which rails tap payments ride on.
The issue the four aggrieved retail groups are pushing is that banks are, in their own self-interest, stalling on switching-on functionality that would them dump Mastercard and Visa’s more expensive rails for eftpos’ cheaper ones.
The new group puts the collective fee sting at hundreds of millions of dollars a year, though the an exact figure is difficult to estimate because banks blend different fees and structures in their deals with merchants to disguise individual cost elements.
Small businesses is particularly ropeable about the lack of progress.
“We’ve formed the Alliance to push hard on this,” COSBOA chief executive Peter Strong blasted
“The fee gouging is harmful to businesses, and the banks should be doing much more to educate their customers, give them options and save money for everyone.”
Australian Retailers Association executive director Russell Zimmerman, the man Australian’s see on their televisions when news bulletins cut to Christmas shopping stories, reckons fee gouging is getting existential.
“With several retailers advising that they are insolvent, and many Australian retailers concerned about reduced profits, dealing with exorbitant fees forced on them by the banks is a problem they should not have to face,” Zimmerman said.
“Australian retail needs the banks to step up, do the right thing for the retail industry, and offer Least Cost Routing to all retailers large and small.”
Master Grocers chief executive Jos De Bruin is also sheeting home the message that if banks don’t stop bleeding merchants there could soon be fewer business customers.
“The cost of not implementing Least Cost Routing is significant and unnecessary – with the current decline in retail spending, merchants are facing numerous headwinds and don’t need this as well.”
There are also strong signs big retailers are moving to claw back the steep clip US card schemes charge.
In November iTnews revealed grocery behemoth Coles had switched millions of debit payments made on Australian bank-issued cards to run across the Eftpos network to reduce transaction costs.

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YouTube Advertising: How to tap into cultural moments- Tempemail – Blog – 10 minute

If you happened to be in England last summer, you will remember two things: First, it was really rather hot. Second, though, was an appropriate companion to the weather: The World Cup.
Skinner and Badiel’s Three Lions, in which the lyrics “football’s coming home” start in a whisper, growing to a braying crescendo, was the soundtrack of the summer. Among the division of Brexit, of politics polarised, of a nation certain only of uncertainty, the song and its video brought us together to create unforgettable shared cultural moments that will be cherished by many.
Video has this power to create shared cultural moments. Millions of people view a video within a given timeframe for a myriad of reasons: shared feelings, iconic moments in time, the release of a long-awaited song. These are what James Cornish, vice president of international sales at Vevo, terms ‘societal moments’.
“Think about England in the football World Cup last year,” he says. “We could pinpoint the moments that consumption of Skinner and Badiel’s Three Lions went through the roof. We can see in real time content aligning with the state of the nation or cultural happenings. These moments correlate directly with whatever is most talked about that day and we have the ability to tap into that.”
Translate what that means for advertisers; Vevo makes your brand more memorable. Vevo’s research with 1,000 participants showed those that watched an ad against a Vevo music video were 31% more likely to remember an ad vs. watching an ad alongside user generated content or google preferred content.
Reshaping advertising around ‘fandom’
Vevo, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, offers something unique to advertisers looking to leverage said cultural moments. Official music videos are distributed through Vevo to YouTube and a host of other platforms. Arguably, Vevo is the point from which popular music culture grows.
“The excitement generated around new releases is huge,” says Cornish. “It creates huge standout moments that shape the internet and conversation on the day a video launches.” But even these numbers have grown exponentially. Cornish offers the example of when Adele released ‘Hello’ in 2015 to a record 28m views in a single day, compared to this year, when Taylor Swift released ‘ME!’, generating some 65m views in the same timeframe.
“It gives advertisers the opportunity to leverage those new videos from different artists on release day. We know we’re going to create a huge cultural moment with highly-engaged fans and can tailor advertising around that. The scale of the different audiences, the virality of content we have – it’s unmatched.”
Over the last six years Vevo has witnessed a staggering 300% growth in daily views. And while these opportunities are both voluminous and there for the taking if an advertiser so desires, these are not Vevo’s only appeal to brands looking to be a part of shared cultural moments.
Brand safety
Since the YouTube brand safety scandal erupted in 2017 – whereby ads were appearing next to questionable content – advertisers have desperately sought environments they know won’t suggest controversial affiliations. Many major brands still haven’t returned to the platform for fears of inadvertently funding terrorism. Tempemail reported back in March this year that the tech giant might never be able to guarantee “100% safety” for brands on YouTube.
Vevo, however, can offer brands just that. “I guess the whole furor over brand safety has really helped us translate the value of our proposition into the market from an ad perspective,” says Cornish.
Unlike the volumes of unvetted, user-uploaded content on YouTube – some 300 hours of video every minute by some counts – Vevo’s platform-within-a-platform is more reminiscent of the curated nature of television, offering brands a hand-picked environment sheltered from the uncertainty of the unfiltered Wild West.
“We aggregate professionally licensed videos only,” insists Cornish. “This is premium content which gives traction to advertisers but does so around content that is inherently brand safe. And not coincidentally, we have the best engagement on the [YouTube] platform.”
Talking of controversial affiliations, the French won the World Cup, and that’s that. But next time England might, and advertisers reading this will know how to tap into those moments in the safest way possible, on Vevo.

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