Australia is developing new digital wallet regulation; Axel Springer Buy Politico
In today’s ExchangeWire news summary: Australia Plans Tighter Regulations for Digital Payment Systems; Politico is bought by Axel Springer; and Dukaan raised US $ 11 million.
Australia reflects on new digital payments law
Australian government considering new laws increase regulation of digital payment services provided by leading technology companies. Services like Apple Pay, Google Pay, and WeChat Pay are not defined as payment systems in the country, which means the current regulatory system does not apply to them.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said he would “carefully review” plans for increased restrictions, as well as other recommendations made in a government-commissioned report. Frydenberg wrote in the Australian Financial Review that government inaction on the issue will mean that “Silicon Valley alone [â¦] determines the future of our payment system â.
A key recommendation is that the Australian government should have the power to define tech companies as payment providers, a responsibility that currently rests with the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA). The report also suggests that government and industry form a blueprint for the broader payments ecosystem and develop a single, integrated licensing framework for digital payments.
According to the RBA, payments made through digital wallets have quadrupled from 2% in 2016 to 8% in 2019. The Commonwealth Bank of Australia, which has implored regulators to become more proactive about the potential ramifications of digital wallets, estimates that transactions made through these systems reached A $ 2.1 billion (Â£ 1.1 billion) in March 2021, an increase of more than 100% year-over-year .
Politico bought by Axel Springer
Axel Springer SE will buy Politico in a deal that will see the German media giant also acquire 100% ownership of Politico Europe and the publisher’s technology news website, Protocol. The deal, which was announced late last month (26e August), is worth over US $ 1 billion (Â£ 722.8 million) and will close in the fourth quarter of 2021 according to an anonymous source close to the case.
Prior to the deal, Axel Springer owned 50% of Politico Europe, after partnering with the US publisher to launch the European version of their website in 2014. The move also follows a series of purchases by the giant media, including Business Insider in 2015. and a controlling stake in newsletter publisher Morning Brew Inc. in 2020.
The deal follows the trend of consolidating media companies, with many publishers merging to compete with tech giants, who currently claim the lion’s share of brands’ advertising budgets. These deals include the purchase of HuffPost by BuzzFeed last year and the respective acquisitions of Refinery29 by Vice and New York Media by Vox Media in 2019.
Dukaan raises $ 11 million
Indian startup Dukaan has raised US $ 11million (Â£ 7.95million) in a pre-Series A funding round. Funding was led by 640 Oxford Ventures, with participation from Venture Catalyst, HOF Capital, Old Well Ventures, LetsVenture and 9Unicorns, alongside pre-existing investors such as Lightspeed Partners and Leopard Ventures.
Founded last year, the Bangalore-based company helps merchants build online stores and sell products digitally with little more than an email address or phone number. Once merchants verify their contact details and provide their business name, their digital store is ready to use, said Suumit Shah, co-founder and CEO of Dukaan.
The startup is looking to break into the so-called Indian âneighborhood marketâ, which is made up of small, local retailers. So far, the market has resisted attempts by domestic ecommerce heavyweights Reliance and Flipkart, as well as world leader Amazon, to infiltrate the space.
Dukaan claims to have helped complete over 1.5 million transactions since its inception, and according to some investors, the company has raised more than US $ 17 million (Â£ 12.3 million) in total, reaching a valuation of US $ 71 million (Â£ 51.3 million). It is understood that the company plans to use the new capital to expand its offering and further strengthen its presence.