Starling Bank passports to Europe, first stop Ireland

 London-based Starling Bank is continuing to gather momentum. After a staggered launch of its current account kicked off in March, the digital-only bank is announcing imminent expansion to Europe, starting with the Republic of Ireland where it has attained a so-called “banking passport”. Read More

Yoyo Wallet raises £12M Series B led by Metro Group to expand in Europe

 The race to digitise the loyalty card just got a shot in the arm with the news that Yoyo Wallet, the European-based mobile payment and customer loyalty platform, has raised a £12 million Series B round, led by the US wholesale and food retail giant Metro Group. The round is joined by the UK-based Woodford Investment Management and Touchstone Innovations. The deal is subject to FCA approval.… Read More

TechCrunch Tel Aviv Pitch-Off: Here are your startups and judges!

 On June 28 in Tel Aviv, we’re hosting the TechCrunch Meetup + Pitch-Off in Tel Aviv — and it’s gonna be a blast! We have a great lineup of judges who are going to listen to the soon-to-be-announced startup pitches and crown the winner of the Tel Aviv Pitch-Off. Tickets are still available, so grab yours today. In addition to a few on-stage interviews, you’ll get to see… Read More

Australia wants Five Eyes to squeeze tech firms on encryption

 The political rhetoric against strong encryption continues to crank up. Reuters reports today that Australia will be pushing for greater powers for countries to tackle the use of encrypted messaging services by terrorists and criminals at an upcoming meeting of ministers from the so-called ‘Five Eyes’ intelligence network. Read More

Facebook expands its hate-fighting counterspeech initiative in Europe

 Facebook has launched a third counterspeech initiative in Europe, partnering with the not-for-profit Institute for Strategic Dialogue for the launch of the Online Civil Courage Initiative (OCCI), which is aimed at tackling online extremism and hate speech. Read More

ABBYY’s new version of TextGrabber is a super useful OCR and translation app

ABBYY has been being doing optical character recognition software since forever, but it’s now brought its software to the mobile. If you want to capture text and make it actionable (click on links or ping out to map directions) this is an extremely useful app. It’s new ABBYYs TextGrabber 6.0 for iOS has just gone live on the Apple App store and it has real-time recognition… Read More

The company called Blockchain raises $40 million

 Blockchain (the company) just raised a $40 million Series B funding round led by Lakestar. Blockchain has been working on the most popular bitcoin wallet in the world. You can open a wallet on the company’s website or through its mobile apps. GV, Nokota Management, Digital Currency Group and existing investors Lightspeed Venture Partners, Mosaic Venture Partners, Prudence Holdings,… Read More

Sean Parker has left Spotify’s board; Padmasree Warrior, Thomas Staggs join in lead up to IPO

 As Spotify inches its way to a public listing, the streaming music company — which now has 140 million users — has made some significant changes to its board of directors. Sean Parker, the early supporter and investor who once founded digital music service Napster and helped usher Facebook into the world, has left Spotify’s board of directors, along with Klaus Hommels,… Read More