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Fexco Announces Corporate Sponsorship of Tonga Rugby Team



  • Sponsorship builds upon over 14 years of Fexco support for the Tongan Community building on its support of the Pacific Games later this year.
  • As rugby celebrates its 100th year in Tonga in August 2023, Fexco commits to fund Tongan preparations for the 2023 Rugby World Cup and beyond.

NUKUʻALOFA, Tonga, Aug. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Irish financial technology and business services company, Fexco Group (“Fexco” or “the Group”), and its currency brand, No1 Currency are set to further extend its support of rugby in the Pacific Islands.  Fexco is announcing an expansion of its commitment to the development of rugby through a new corporate sponsorship deal with the Tongan national rugby union (“Tonga rugby”) ahead of the 2023 Rugby World Cup.



The partnership reinforces both Fexco and No1 Currency’s commitment to nurturing rugby at a grassroots level, and the support for Tonga rugby in its preparations for the World Cup, aligns with the Group’s four-decade objective of making a positive impact in the communities where it operates.

In addition to the World Cup support, Fexco will also assist Tonga in their Oceania Rugby Men’s Championship campaign and associated friendly games. Through the long-term support of rugby which is culturally important to Tonga, and the Pacific Islands, Fexco aims to make the game more accessible to anyone who wants to play and bring communities together.

Recognising the funding challenges faced by Tonga rugby, Fexco’s sponsorship will provide crucial support for the team’s travel to France, as well as supplying necessary kits and training materials for their participation in the Rugby World Cup.

As part of the sponsorship agreement, Fexco will proudly display its logo, representing the Fexco Group, on the back of the Tonga Rugby kit’s shoulders. Furthermore, its renowned currency exchange brand, No1 Currency, will be prominently featured across the rear of the shorts.

Neil Hosty, Fexco CEO said today:
“Fexco is pleased to announce its sponsorship of the Tongan national rugby team, which expands on our ongoing support for rugby in the Pacific Islands. For over 40 years now, the Group has been committed to making a positive impact in its communities, through the funding of local sports clubs and other local organisations. We are proud to extend this commitment to the Kingdom of Tonga from the Kingdom of Kerry in Ireland. We hope that this sponsorship will mark the expansion of its relationship with Tongan rugby that will see Fexco support the game from grassroots right up to professional level. We also look forward to launching similar initiatives across other locations in the region.”

Tongan rugby CEO, Peter Harding, welcomed the announcement:
Rugby is a huge part of the Tongan culture, drawing immense support from communities across the islands. However, we have faced challenges in securing funding. That is why we are thrilled to have Fexco onboard as our sponsors for the 2023/24 season. This sponsorship will play a crucial role in financing our preparations for the upcoming Rugby World Cup and establishing development structures to foster the game’s expansion throughout the country, benefiting players from all levels of our society.”

Headquartered in Killorglin, Co. Kerry, Fexco operates in 29 countries, including Tonga and the wider Pacific region, where it has maintained a prominent presence for over two decades. Fexco specialises in money transfer, currency exchange, and international payment services, offering its expertise to governments, non-profit organisations, businesses, and individuals through its No1 Currency brand.

Rugby occupies a vital role in Tongan culture as the national sport, commanding a devoted and passionate fan base. Nevertheless, due to the country’s small population and competition from neighbouring Pacific nations, the sport has encountered financial hurdles at both national and community levels.

Rugby was introduced to Tonga in the early 20th century by sailors and missionaries, leading to the establishment of the Tonga Rugby Football Union in late 1923. Notably, August 4th, 2023, will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the first rugby game played on Tongan soil. Tonga has achieved remarkable victories in Rugby World Cup history, including their unexpected 19–14 win over France in the 2011 World Cup. Additionally, on November 24, 2012, Tonga secured their first victory over a traditional rugby power on a European pitch with a 21–15 win against Scotland at Pittodrie Stadium.

As the last constitutional monarchy among Pacific Island countries, the Kingdom of Tonga holds a unique place in the region.

Fexco’s Presence in South Pacific
For close to two decades, Fexco has been dedicated to supporting communities and providing sponsorship that drives empowerment, innovation, and inclusive growth on a global scale. By investing in the communities, it serves, Fexco creates an environment where businesses and individuals can thrive together.

This announcement further extends Fexco’s commitment to community support and sponsorship initiatives in the Pacific region. Alongside backing Tonga Rugby, Fexco/No1 Currency will also undertake the role of the official foreign exchange provider for the Pacific Games, a continental multi-sport event that occurs every four years, bringing together athletes from islands spanning the Central and South Pacific Ocean. These games will take place scheduled in November 2023 and will be hosted in the Solomon Islands.

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About Fexco

Recognised as one of the world’s original and most established fintech players, Fexco employs over 2,600 people across its suite of companies headquartered in Killorglin, Co. Kerry located in the South West of Ireland. Founded in 1981, Fexco now has operations in 29 countries across Europe, the Middle East, Asia-Pacific, North America, and Latin America.

Fexco serves some of the world’s biggest brands across multiple industries, predominantly in the payments and FX sectors, through a wide range of innovative products and services including Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC), Multi Currency Pricing (MCP), Shopping Retail FX, and Clear FX. Fexco also offers bespoke Managed and Advisory Services as well as a full suite of payment management solutions through its Corporate Payments business.

Since inception, Fexco has been driven by an entrepreneurial and innovative spirit. This ethos has brought the company to new regions and industries of growth, connecting customers with exciting new opportunities. Through its commitment to partnership and innovation, the company has built an international network of customers. To find out more visit

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Web3 Startups Raise Nearly $1.9B in Q1 2024 Despite Overall Downtrend in Crypto VC Interest




Venture capital funding for cryptocurrency and blockchain projects has seen a notable resurgence in the first quarter of 2024, marking its first quarterly rise since 2021. Crunchbase data released today indicates that Web3 startups secured nearly $1.9 billion in funding across 346 deals during this period. This represents a substantial 58% increase from the previous quarter, offering a glimmer of hope amidst the ongoing downward trend in overall crypto VC interest.

The recent surge in funding can be attributed to investors adopting a more long-term perspective on Web3, as opposed to the hype-driven “tourist investors” predominant in recent years. Chris Metinko, the author of the report, notes that investors are shifting their focus to the AI sector, indicating a change in investment strategy. There is a growing interest in supporting the foundational infrastructure of the decentralized internet, rather than solely concentrating on crypto wallets and lending platforms, which attracted significant investments during the peak period of 2021 to 2022.

While large funding rounds were relatively uncommon in Q1, several notable investments stood out. Exohood Labs, a company integrating AI, quantum computing, and blockchain, secured a remarkable $112 million seed round at a valuation of $1.4 billion. EigenLabs, an Ether token “restaking” platform, raised $100 million in a Series B round led by a16z crypto. Additionally, Freechat, a decentralized social network leveraging blockchain technology, secured $80 million in a Series A round. These investments, among others, contributed to the increase in valuations and the emergence of four new Web3 unicorns in Q1.

Despite the recent progress, the future trajectory of Web3 remains uncertain. Metinko suggests that the next few quarters will be pivotal in determining the industry’s direction. While investors anticipate a rebound in investment as the decentralized internet evolves, it may take another year for venture capital activity to stabilize after the exuberance of 2021. Factors such as the approval of U.S. spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds and the upcoming Bitcoin halving could also influence the market, given the rising prices of Bitcoin and Ether.

A noteworthy example of significant funding in the Web3 space is Monad Labs’ recent successful funding round, which secured $225 million led by Paradigm. Monad Labs is a layer-1 blockchain compatible with Ethereum, offering faster transaction processing. This funding round harkens back to the golden era of crypto funding in 2021-2022, when L1 solutions attracted substantial investments.

Earlier this year, Balance, a digital asset custodian based in Canada, announced that it had once again reached $2 billion in assets under custody (AUC) amidst the recent market recovery. Similarly, Korea Digital Asset (KODA), the largest institutional crypto custody service in South Korea, has experienced remarkable growth in crypto assets under its custody, expanding by nearly 248% in the second half of 2023.

Analysts at Bernstein Research project that crypto funds could reach an impressive $500 billion to $650 billion within the next five years, representing a significant leap from the current valuation of approximately $50 billion. This forecast underscores the growing optimism and potential for substantial growth within the crypto industry in the coming years.


The post Web3 Startups Raise Nearly $1.9B in Q1 2024 Despite Overall Downtrend in Crypto VC Interest appeared first on HIPTHER Alerts.

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ASIC cracks down on blockchain mining firms




Three blockchain mining companies – NGS Crypto, NGS Digital, and NGS Group – along with their directors, Brett Mendham, Ryan Brown, and Mark Ten Caten, are facing legal action from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) for allegedly operating without a license, in violation of Australia’s Corporations Act. ASIC initiated legal proceedings against these entities on April 9, citing concerns about their non-compliance with financial regulations and their solicitation of Australian investors.

According to ASIC, the NGS companies promoted blockchain mining packages with fixed-rate returns to Australian investors, encouraging the transfer of funds from regulated superannuation funds to self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs) for conversion into cryptocurrency. Approximately 450 Australians invested a total of around USD 41 million in these packages, raising concerns about potential financial losses.

The legal action filed by ASIC alleges that the companies violated section 911A of the Corporations Act, which prohibits companies from providing financial services without a valid Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL). ASIC is seeking interim and final court orders to prohibit the NGS companies from offering financial services in Australia without an AFSL.

ASIC Chair Joe Longo emphasized the importance of investors carefully considering the risks before investing in crypto-related products through their SMSFs. Longo stated that ASIC’s actions send a message to the crypto industry about the regulator’s commitment to ensuring compliance with regulations and protecting consumers.

In a separate development, the Federal Court appointed receivers for the digital currency assets associated with the NGS companies and their directors to safeguard these assets amid concerns about the risk of dissipation. Mendham was also issued a travel restriction order, preventing him from leaving Australia.

While a court date for the proceedings has not been set, ASIC’s investigation is ongoing, with the regulator continuing to gather evidence and build its case. It is worth noting that the investigated companies share a similar name with NGS Super, a legitimate Australian pensions provider, leading to potential confusion among investors. NGS Super clarified that it is not involved in selling cryptocurrency or related products and has taken legal action to protect its trademark and members’ interests.


The post ASIC cracks down on blockchain mining firms appeared first on HIPTHER Alerts.

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Crypto and Blockchain Weave Deeper Into the Biometrics Space – Identity News Digest




AuthID Inc. has formed a strategic partnership with the National Notarial Centralized Verification System (NNCVS) to integrate biometric identity verification into NNCVS’s online notary platform. NNCVS, a provider of nationwide online services for notaries, aims to transition from a local, in-person framework to a more secure, digital model. By leveraging AuthID’s platform, NNCVS will authenticate the identities of notarial agents and their clients using biometric checks that compare selfies with ID document photos. This enhancement ensures heightened security throughout users’ interactions with the service.

iVALT has introduced a mobile app called OnDemandID, designed to enable users to verify the identity of individuals during phone calls, video calls, or online interactions with a single click. The app employs multiple verification elements, including biometrics, device ID, and location-based parameters like geofencing and time windowing, to prevent deepfake attacks and identity fraud. OnDemandID prioritizes user privacy by storing biometric data locally on the device and refraining from tracking user movements. Additionally, iVALT offers integration into existing enterprise mobile apps, providing a solution to enhance caller verification processes within corporate environments.

Keyless, a company specializing in secure facial recognition, has partnered with EnQualify, an AI-powered Know Your Customer (KYC) verification provider, to enhance online identity verification. Keyless’s privacy-centric ZKB technology will integrate with EnQualify’s AI for initial user verification, enabling a seamless and secure authentication process. This collaboration eliminates the need for repetitive steps and data storage, offering a faster and more user-friendly verification experience while ensuring robust security measures.

Australian fintech Waave has launched its Wallet app to enhance security and convenience for online payments. Integrated with Waave’s Pay by Bank system, Wallet utilizes fingerprint or facial recognition for secure authentication, eliminating the need for passwords and card details. This approach addresses concerns about online fraud, providing a streamlined payment process for consumers and merchants alike. Additionally, Wallet will introduce expense tracking features later in 2024, further enhancing its utility for users.

BeatBit Wellness Lab has introduced the CUDIS ring, a wearable device focused on user-controlled health data management. Powered by Solana blockchain technology, CUDIS tracks biometric data and offers personalized health insights using AI algorithms. Users can contribute anonymized data to a research network and earn rewards, emphasizing data ownership and privacy. The CUDIS ring integrates securely with other Solana and Web3 products, offering users a comprehensive health monitoring solution within the decentralized ecosystem.

Worldcoin has unveiled World Chain, a new blockchain platform designed to prioritize verified human users over bots, aiming to reduce network congestion and transaction fees. Integrated with the Worldcoin protocol’s Proof of Personhood, World Chain provides verified users with priority blockspace and gas allowances. This Layer 2 solution, secured by Ethereum, offers developers access to a large pool of verified users for deploying utility applications. World Chain is set to be open source and permissionless, with plans for community-based governance in the future.

New South Wales (NSW) has launched an Australia-first trial to test digital birth certificates, involving over 18,000 children associated with specific educational institutions. Led by the NSW Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages in collaboration with the Department of Customer Service, the pilot explores the use of digital certificates with the same legal validity as traditional paper versions. Digital birth certificates aim to simplify administrative tasks and offer enhanced security and convenience, particularly in disaster-prone areas where paper documents could be compromised.


The post Crypto and Blockchain Weave Deeper Into the Biometrics Space – Identity News Digest appeared first on HIPTHER Alerts.

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