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Circle Launches Comprehensive NFT Platform & Marketplace Payments Solution

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Circle Launches Comprehensive NFT Platform & Marketplace Payments Solution

Circle, a global financial technology firm that provides payments and treasury infrastructure for internet businesses, today announced a comprehensive payments solution for non-fungible token (NFT) marketplaces and storefronts that enables them to accept credit card and crypto payments alike in order to attract more mainstream audience adoption. Circle today also unveiled forthcoming features that will be made available over the coming months, including support USDC, BTC and ETH payments, NFT custodial services, and yield-generating Circle accounts for NFT market operators.

Circle simplifies buying and selling by enabling platforms to accept credit card payments alongside crypto

NFT marketplaces have surged in popularity over the past 12 months, but broad-based mainstream adoption is lagging due to the complexity of payment transactions, which usually require the use of cryptocurrencies. Circle’s NFT solution simplifies buying and selling by enabling platforms to accept credit card payments alongside crypto, all with a seamless user experience. This makes NFT transactions easier by encouraging greater engagement, platform expansion and support for creators worldwide through the marriage of traditional payment rails and leading digital dollar stablecoin USD Coin (USDC).

NFTs have seen a meteoric rise in recent months – as platforms like NBA Top Shot skyrocket in popularity (Top Shot has seen a 400% increase in sales over the past 30 days) and digital art becomes mainstream (iconic auction house Christie’s recently offered the first purely digital artwork with the auction of Beeple’s Everydays for $69M). In February 2021 alone, sales volume across major NFT marketplaces grew nearly 800%, to more than $200M.

“This is not only an important and valuable trend for marketplaces and creators, it represents incredible demand from customers – for collectibles, artwork, moments, and really anything that can be tokenized on the blockchain,” said Jeremy Allaire, Circle Co-founder and CEO. “Circle looks forward to supporting the industry – creators, platforms, marketplaces, storefronts and customers – with our solution for enabling a user-friendly, mainstream payments experience with the power of crypto connectivity and USDC.”

With Circle’s payments and treasury infrastructure, NFT marketplaces and storefronts can create a seamless user experience for buyers and sellers alike:

  • Build upon Circle’s Payments, Payouts and Digital Dollar Accounts APIs to process transactions and use the Circle Account to maintain a scalable treasury infrastructure on the backend, making platform management easier than ever.
  • Choose to offer traditional and crypto payment options, or abstract crypto entirely from the user – all in service of greater convenience and efficiency alike.

Over the coming months, Circle plans to release a range of features aimed at NFT marketplaces, storefronts and platforms:

  • Support for BTC & ETH payments. NFT markets will be able to easily accept BTC and ETH as payment and payout methods, allowing both crypto HODLers and new mainstream users to pay with fiat and crypto.
  • Storage, Custody and Transfer of NFT assets. Circle’s digital asset account infrastructure and APIs will enable NFT markets and properties to easily store NFT assets with best-in-class digital asset custody services, while also enabling their customers to transfer standard NFTs in and out of their markets and services.
  • Treasury and Yield Services. NFT markets are digital asset native businesses, and with funds and treasury accounts held with Circle, NFT developers can take advantage of Circle’s new high-yield digital dollar accounts*, enabling idle working capital to earn between 4-8% APY on USDC.

These new areas of focus are just the beginning as Circle continues to build and partner with the leading projects, developers and brands that are innovating in the NFT commerce space.

This comes at a time of explosive growth for USDC, whose market cap is more than $10B and has more than doubled in 2021 alone. Dollar stablecoins like USDC have quickly become the preferred currency of NFT marketplaces and storefronts as they offer a convenient funding source for end users as well as the ability to streamline their operations and stay crypto-native as needed. In the future, Circle plans to expand its roadmap by accepting ETH payments as well as providing custody for NFTs.

Acquisition

Cano Health Acquires University Health Care for $600 Million and Increases 2021 Adjusted EBITDA Guidance to Over $100 Million

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Cano Health Acquires University Health Care for 0 Million and Increases 2021 Adjusted EBITDA Guidance to Over 0 Million

Cano Health, Inc. (“Cano Health”) (NYSE: CANO), a leading value-based primary care provider for seniors and underserved communities, and University Health Care and its affiliates (“University”), a private medical provider dedicated to comprehensive, dependable medical services in local communities, today announced Cano Health has acquired University and its affiliates for $600 million. The bolt-on acquisition to Cano Health’s proprietary population health management platform leverages Cano Health’s high quality operational and clinical care services to improve health outcomes for University patients while strengthening the company’s position in the fragmented Florida market.

Cano Health also now estimates full year 2021 adjusted EBITDA between $100 million and $110 million and reaffirms its full year 2021 membership guidance of 154,000 to 162,000 members and revenue guidance of between $1.4 billion and $1.5 billion.

“This transaction is a significant step forward for Cano Health and our patients, as it will allow us to bring our brand of affordable, high quality primary care to more patients in the Florida market and accelerate Cano Health’s profitable growth,” said Dr. Marlow Hernandez, Co-founder, Chairman and CEO of Cano Health. “University is a premier provider of value-based care, and we are thrilled to welcome the world-class University team to the Cano Health family. Our model has proven effective at providing industry-leading outcomes while controlling costs, and we look forward to delivering care at a larger scale than ever before.”

“Protecting the legacy of our family-owned business, our relationships with providers, and our deep ties to the local community has always been important to us. Our priority every step of the way was the wellbeing of our patients and the job security of our employees,” said Maggie Quevedo, Co-Founder of University.

Michael Quevedo, President of University and son of its Co-Founders commented, “In Cano Health, we immediately recognized a partner who shares our values and can help us build upon the legacy left by my father, Felix Quevedo, Sr.  My brother Felix Quevedo, Jr., and I, together with our family and the entire University team, look forward to building America’s Primary Care with Cano Health. We are confident that our shared vision enables a winning combination for our patients, employees, and partners.”

Strategic Rationale

University’s services align with the Cano Health model, which provides members access, quality, and wellness through a high-touch and high-tech model of care. Both companies share a similar culture, and both companies’ staff seek to build lifelong bonds with their members. Estimated standalone full-year 2021 University revenue is approximately $355 million and adjusted EBITDA is $37 million.

With this combination, Cano Health expects to continue to grow by serving its combined approximately 143,000 members in 88 medical centers, with over 1,000 staff and affiliate providers across the country.

Combining with University will:

  • Add approximately 24,000 Medicare Advantage members.
  • Increase Cano Health’s capitated Medicare organic membership and revenue growth due to a significant increase in clinical capacity and leveraging of Cano Health’s robust brand in the markets in which University operates.
  • Create synergies by adding affiliate providers to the CanoPanorama platform and medical center operations.
  • Improve University’s medical claims expense ratio through operational enhancements such as Cano@Home, a 24/7 urgency line, and care management programs.
  • Leverage Cano Health’s proprietary population health management technology platform (CanoPanorama), delivering improved health incomes to a larger set of patients.
  • Expand Cano Health’s leading market share in Florida, the number one Medicare Advantage market in the US.
  • Deliver on Cano Health’s strategic objective to build, buy, and manage medical practices. Cano Health continues to pursue three key initiatives to realize the massive opportunity in value-based primary care: 1) organic growth, 2) new market entry and 3) targeted acquisitions.

Financial Terms

  • Cano Health acquired University with $540 million in cash and $60 million in equity. The transaction was financed through cash on hand and common equity issued to University’s shareholders.

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Drone Express Partners with FarEye To Launch Intelligent Drone Deliveries in the United States

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Drone Express Partners with FarEye To Launch Intelligent Drone Deliveries in the United States

Drone Express, a commercial drone delivery service and a division of TELEGRID Technologies, Inc., has partnered with FarEye, an Intelligent Delivery Management Platform, to power autonomous drone deliveries for leading retailers in the United States.

As the e-commerce delivery economy rapidly increases, retailers are under pressure to evolve faster in the last mile to meet the growing demand while providing a great customer experience. These expectations lead to driver shortages, complexities in carrier partnerships, and order fulfillment in the retail market. Autonomous drones have been identified as a viable, more sustainable and cost-efficient alternative mode of delivery to ensure the overall customer experience is not negatively impacted by these challenges.

Drone Express operates as a logistics company, working with companies to strategically introduce drone package delivery into their supply chains and service offerings. The company has partnered with FarEye to enhance the drone delivery customer experience. FarEye provides Intelligent Delivery Orchestration solutions helping retail enterprises provide new delivery experiences. End-to-end visibility is achieved by optimizing routes resulting in a positive customer experience.

In May, Drone Express and the leading grocery retail provider in the United States announced a pilot to offer a drone delivery service as part of the grocery retailer’s continuing efforts to transform e-commerce. The first grocery retail store is expected to offer the drone delivery service in early summer.

“The time has come for drone deliveries to become the new reality. Retailers are facing new pressures due to the delivery boom and consumer demand and are showing interest in innovative delivery solutions like autonomous drones. Customers are used to Amazon-Prime-like experiences where they can schedule and track their deliveries in real-time. We are excited to take this market-first offering to retailers in partnership with Telegrid and transform modern-day retail deliveries,” said Gaurav Srivastava, Co-founder at FarEye.

With the combined capabilities of Telegrid and FarEye, retailers can achieve:

  • Contactless deliveries with the help of drones
  • Delightful customer experience keeping customers informed at every step of the delivery journey
  • More flexibility to the customer to pick date and time of deliveries
  • Improved on-time delivery performance by avoiding traffic delays
  • Faster ways to fulfill same-day and same-hour deliveries
  • Improved sustainability utilizing an alternative delivery method reducing overall carbon emissions
  • Reduced operating costs by savings in driver and fuel costs

“Our landmark drone technology means consumers can now order a Gatorade to the soccer field, sunscreen to the beach, aspirin to the office or chicken soup for a sick friend,” said Beth Flippo, Chief Technology Officer, TELEGRID Technologies, Inc. “We are excited to partner with FarEye. The company plays a critical role in shaping the delivery experience to customers with optimized routing and real-time tracking. Together, we are moving commercial drone delivery beyond hype and making it a reality.”

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Singapore based eCommerce platform Lazada launches public bug bounty program upto $10,000 with YesWeHack

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Singapore based eCommerce platform Lazada launches public bug bounty program upto ,000 with YesWeHack

Focused on vulnerabilities of personal data, Lazada will pay out up to US$10,000 in rewards to ethical hackers

Southeast Asia’s leading eCommerce platform Lazada announces the launch of a public bug bounty program with YesWeHack to identify vulnerabilities, after running a successful 18 month-long private program. Since January 2020, Lazada has been working with ethical hackers to detect security vulnerabilities in its IT environment as part of a private bug bounty program, and is now opening the program to the entire cybersecurity community.

With the launch of this public Bug Bounty program, Lazada is making a statement to the eCommerce industry, and highlighting the priority it places on security and transparency for its customers and partners, by offering security researchers up to US$10,000 per bounty.

Protecting customer data is a top priority

Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Singapore, Lazada is one of the leading e-commerce platforms in Southeast Asia and was acquired by Alibaba Group in 2016. The company, which has operations in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, also offers logistics, retail technology and payment services solutions, in addition to LazMall, the region’s largest virtual mall with over 18,000 brands.

Since the launch of its private bug bounty program, Lazada has worked with over one hundred ethical hackers to surface vulnerabilities, and has awarded over US$150,000 in bounties to security researchers. This includes a pre-launch event for the public program conducted that saw hackers from the YesWeHack community identify vulnerabilities in 48 hours.

“Given the importance of data and personal information, Lazada takes great care in protecting our customers and we have worked to patch these vulnerabilities, to ensure a safe shopping platform. With the evolving nature of data security, as well as the aggressive nature of hackers who exploit technology to steal data, we believe in working with the larger cybersecurity community to strengthen our IT ecosystems,” says Alan Chan, Chief Risk Officer of Lazada Group.

“Since working with YesWeHack, we have improved our security by enhancing our Secure Software Development Process, to avoid the same type of vulnerability coming up again. It has been very useful to verify with the wider researchers that our security monitoring can catch exploitation of vulnerabilities.”

Up to US$10,000 reward for reports on critical vulnerabilities

Lazada is now taking additional steps in providing transparency and security to its customers, by transferring the areas previously tested in the private program to a public program. This allows cybersecurity researchers from all over the world to participate in the program and report vulnerabilities to the eCommerce platform.

Furthermore, special attention will be paid to vulnerabilities that affect personal data and have severity levels of “high” or “critical.” For submitted reports on critical vulnerabilities, Lazada will pay out up to US$10,000 to security researchers. More information of the public bounty program can be found here.

“By launching this latest public bug bounty program, we are sending a clear message to everyone, that we value the importance of data in our possession. We believe in the expertise of the YesWeHack community and are excited to continue to work with ethical hackers in identifying new attack methods and countering them. This is about protecting our data, protecting our employees and protecting our customers against vulnerabilities,” says Franck Vervial, Head of Cyberdefence at Lazada.

“YesWeHack is delighted to partner with Lazada and expand our market in Asia, ensure their e-commerce platform and its customers are protected against increasingly sophisticated cyber threats,” says Kevin Gallerin, Managing Director, APAC at YesWeHack. “The switch to a public program follows over 18 months of collaboration, during which our global community of researchers has demonstrated its effectiveness and broad spectrum of skills. By reaching out to a broader community, Lazada strengthens its security, champions transparency and data privacy and protection. Ultimately, building and maintaining the trust and experience of the several million users across APAC.”

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