Hi all, Julie here.

As an increasing number of us are now vaccinated, Fintech Today is finally hosting its first event in over a year, a small happy hour! For those of you that live in Austin or will be in the area the first week of June, fill out this 3 question survey and we’ll keep you in the loop! Exact day of the week/location still TBD. FTT+ subscribers will be prioritized as we’re capping headcount at 20.

In other news, the podcasts continue! Check out my latest episode with Craig Lewis from Gig Wage. I loved talking to this inspiring Black founder who’s shaking up the payroll industry.

The News

SoFi Adds Crypto Rewards to Credit Card

A couple of days ago, SoFi became the first Challenger Bank to allow its credit card customers to redeem reward points directly into cryptocurrency via SoFi Invest! It comes the same week that Gemini and Mastercard announced a partnership to offer a crypto rewards credit card this summer.

JPMorgan Trying to Make Fintech Friends

Robinhood has switched to using JPMorgan Chase to handle money transfers into customers’ accounts, vs Ohio’s Sutton Bank which it had been using. The brokerage start-up emailed customers this week to say it is now using JPMorgan to process transactions for cash management accounts. Let’s see which banks Robinhood chooses for its upcoming public offering and if this move worked after Jamie Dimon recently slammed fintech companies in his annual shareholder letter.

Paxos Funding Round

Paxos, the crypto startup that offers a slew of services connecting traditional players to the cryptocurrency markets, announced a new funding round at a $2.4B valuation. This is the company that was picked to provide the infrastructure for PayPal’s crypto offering, and I’ve heard Wealthfront has talked to Paxos about using it to offer crypto to its customers as well. The $300M round was led by Oak and previous investors Declaration Partners, PayPal Ventures, Mithril Capital and others also participated.

Chinese Central Bank Digital Currency Updates

I missed this earlier this week, but Ant Group and Tencent recently promoted an alliance with the People’s Bank of China to create a digital yuan. From my understanding, this is the first time the tech giants have talked about helping the PBoC on this project. A poster at a recent Chinese summit showed that Ant Group launched a digital yuan trial in Shanghai in December 2020. Also at the Summit, the Digital Currency Research Institute of the PBoC told attendees of the signing of an agreement with Ant Group to progress with building a technical platform for the digital yuan.

CB Insights Q1 Preview Report

CB Insights is out with its latest fintech report recapping the first 2-months of 2021 and it’s wild. TLDR: Europe saw a massive increase in funding (180%), M&A activity hit new highs, and fintech is on pace to grow 39% quarter-over-quarter. Here’s one slide:

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Today's Partner, Public

Looking for your next job? Public.com is hiring 👀

Public.com, the social investing network, has had a big year. The company recently announced a Series D funding round and surpassed its 1M member milestone.

Check out these open roles, and head to their careers page for even more.

Career Corner

A fun job posting from Square today as well!

  1. Product Marketing Lead, Cash App: Cash App is hatching a Product Marketing function and looking for a seasoned Product Marketing Lead to build and scale the team. This team will be responsible for crafting and executing on scalable and measurable go-to-market strategies and campaigns for Cash App’s growing portfolio of financial products and services. Cash App is consistently among the Top Finance Apps in the US and is focused on making money more relatable, instantly available, and universally accessible for everyone. Apply today!

Community Highlights

Congrats to FTT Community Member Naftali Harris of Sentilink (which protects businesses from fraud) for winning LendIt's pitch competition!

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