In today’s top Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) news, European Union startups raise a record $121 billion; Microsoft’s $16 billion Nuance deal is under review by the EU; Germany’s Volkswagen is considering taking Porsche public; restaurant OS GrubTech notches $13 million in a Series A funding round; Dutch automaker Stellantis targets $22.5 billion in new software by 2030; and more.
Spurred by Europe’s fast-growing tech sector, startups in the region have raised a record $121 billion in funding this year, almost three times the $41 billion brought in last year.
The EU’s antitrust authority will take a closer look at Microsoft’s plan to purchase artificial intelligence (AI) and speech technology company Nuance Communications for $16 billion. The European Commission’s competition bureau will ask customers and competitors to fill out a questionnaire listing their concerns about the deal.
Volkswagen is exploring a possible initial public offering (IPO) of luxury brand Porsche AG as an option to pay for its pricey transition to a focus on software and electric vehicles (EVs).
GrubTech, an all-in-one operating system for restaurants and cloud kitchens has raised $13 million in a Series A funding round. It plans to use the money to continue advancing its solutions and further grow its footprint in new markets.
Netherlands-based automaker Stellantis said it expects threefold increases in its connected vehicles — featuring GPS, infotaintment systems, driver assistance capabilities and other tech — from 12 million today to 34 million by 2030 to add $22.5 billion in annual revenue from software services and subscriptions.
European payments and transaction platform Worldline has acquired 80% of Eurobank Merchant Acquiring, which has a 20% market share of the Greek acquisition market.
Sam Seaton, CEO at Moneyhub tells PYMNTS that the U.K.-based open finance platform is helping businesses digitize the manual, labor-intensive credit card reconciliation process, while looking forward to the mandatory implementation of sweeping via Variable Recurring Payments (VRPs) next year that will push open banking into the mainstream.
According to What U.K. Consumers Expect From Their Grocery Shopping Experiences, a PYMNTS and ACI Worldwide collaboration, British consumers have been increasing their use of online shopping for groceries for close to two years since the pandemic began in March 2020.
Open banking provider Yolt is expanding its B2B platform across Europe after obtaining a PSD2 license from De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB). The move allows Yolt to conduct open banking activities, including Payment Initiation Services (PIS) and Account Information Services (AIS), under its DNB license.
Intel is betting that a spinoff of its own autonomous vehicle unit will, in turn, boost value for its own investors. And in the process, the spinoff lets Wall Street place its bets more firmly on the emergence of high tech on wheels. To that end, the tech giant Intel is gunning to list shares in the self-driving automotive business, Israel-based Mobileye, by the middle of 2022.
Bahrain-based open banking platform Tarabut Gateway has joined forces with telecommunications company Zain Bahrain to provide what the companies said is the first use case of open banking payments via telco app in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).
Modern card issuing platform Marqeta has furthered its partnership with Klarna to expand into several new countries with buy now, pay later (BNPL) services, virtual cards and other payments-related features. The new countries include the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands.
Stricter rules and more oversight are needed to curb the risk of bond funds and finance (DeFi), the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) said in its December Quarterly Review.
Madeline Aufseeser of ACI Worldwide tells PYMNTS that with the growing uncertainty around the spread of the pandemic, U.K. grocers and brands will have to find ways to bridge the gap between in-person and digital shopping opportunities, using technologies like tokenization to make the multi-channel shopping experience more personable.
Despite a $10 million investment from global BNPL giant Afterpay, Tariq Sheikh, founder and CEO of Postpay tells PYMNTS that the Dubai-based BNPL platform remains committed to growing and scaling across the MENA and wider GCC region on its own, using its first-of-its-kind BNPL virtual card solution to differentiate itself from the competition.
DeFi’s decentralization is an “illusion,” according to a new report from BIS. The latest BIS quarterly review takes a skeptical look at DeFi’s governance structure, which relies on automated voting by token holders to make any rule changes or code upgrades.