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Fintech focus: Western Union in Thailand; EVO Payments enters Chilean market

S&P Global Market Intelligence rounds up financial technology companies' recent product launches, partnership announcements and fundraising activity, as well as regulatory developments in the fintech space. Please send tips to Rachel.Stone@spglobal.com. For more fintech news, click here.

Payments

Western Union Co. launched its online international money transfer service in Thailand.

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EVO Payments Inc. and Chile's Banco de Credito e Inversiones SA formed a 10-year joint venture, making EVO Payments the first international merchant acquirer to enter the Chilean payments market.

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Dealer Pay will integrate its software-as-a-service payment acceptance platform into Payment Data Systems Inc.'s technology through a partnership.

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Discover Global Network, the payments brand of Discover Financial Services, signed a partnership with cloud and payments company Sage to provide more payments options to cardholders in the U.K. and Ireland.

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Comdata Inc. launched a solution to help employees manage their finances better and to provide more convenient payments options. Fintwist is available online and through a mobile app.

Comdata is a subsidiary of FleetCor Technologies Inc.

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Holders of Visa Inc. travel prepaid cards visiting the U.S. from Southeast Asia can now conduct surcharge-free transactions at more than 40,000 Allpoint Network ATMs.

Debit cardholders from select financial institutions will receive the same benefit.

Cryptocurrencies

More initial coin offerings, or ICOs, may be eligible for "no-action" relief, said Director of Corporation Finance William Hinman at the SEC's Fintech Forum on May 31. In April, Wall Street's top regulator issued a no-action letter for a digital asset issued by TurnKey Jet Inc., in conjunction with an updated digital asset framework.

Last week, Hinman said that even if some aspects of the TurnKey project were not fully developed, the SEC may still have provided no-action relief, addressing one criticism that the no-action was so specific that it does not help other ICO projects know if they need to register as a security. Hinman also reiterated a previously stated view that cryptocurrencies are capable of shifting from being a security to not being one. The agency is reviewing a number of filings for distributed ledger technology-based digital assets, Hinman added.

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Ernst & Young LLP, one of the world's largest consultancy firms, released a new set of protocols for enabling private transactions on the Ethereum blockchain. The project, dubbed Nightfall, aims to provide a way to facilitate private transactions on the shared Ethereum network.

Banking and lending

Atlanta-based Cadence Bank NA and Omaha, Neb.-based First Bankcard Center teamed up to provide a credit card for the former's large commercial, midmarket, small business and consumer customers.

First Bankcard is a subsidiary of First National Bank of Omaha.

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Dubuque, Iowa-based Heartland Financial USA Inc. rolled out an online account for business deposit products, which will enable customers to open checking, savings and money market accounts online.

Insurance and healthcare

Genpact Ltd. and auto insurer Root Insurance Co. partnered to optimize the claims processing efficiency of the latter and to improve customer experience and drive competitive growth.

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State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. and United Services Automobile Association teamed up to test how blockchain can improve the speed of the auto claims subrogation process.

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Ride-hailing giant Uber Technologies Inc. partnered with startup Inshur Inc. in the U.K. to allow its drivers to select and pay for an insurance policy in the app, UKTN reported.

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Aon PLC and CoverWallet Inc., a digital insurance company that targets small businesses, teamed up to expand in Australia. Aon also made a strategic investment in CoverWallet, though the financial terms were not disclosed.

Data and information management

BoardProspects Inc., a subsidiary of Osprey Capital LLC, agreed to provide its members with access to Nasdaq Boardvantage under a partnership with Nasdaq Governance Solutions.

Nasdaq Boardvantage allows directors to manage their materials across desktop, tablet and smartphone apps, according to a press release.