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Bleckwen Raises $10m and Appoints David Christie as CEO

Vlad Poptamas

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Bleckwen, a provider of real-time analytics software for fraud detection & prevention in payments, has come out of stealth to announce a $10 million first funding round. The funding will be used to support Bleckwen’s international expansion and the continued development of the company’s exciting software capabilities in AI-based fraud detection. The company’s expertise is strategically focused on the wider anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorism financing (CTF) context. Bleckwen recently spun-off from Ercom, the French cybersecurity firm. The round was led by Ring Capital, a Paris-based venture capital firm and existing investors, including TempoCap, Bpifrance and Ineo, alongside senior management.

Built with banks, for banks, Bleckwen’s real-time, dynamic behavioural analytics & explainable AI-engine is well placed to detect the surging fraud threats in payments, such as authorised push payment fraud or the “human hack” which is growing by circa 60% year-on-year, driven by the surge in real-time payment networks globally. The platform also protects banks from the emergent risks of open banking under PSD2, where banks will no longer have full control of the end-to-end user experience and security perimeter, presenting a completely new threat dimension.

Over the last year, the company has also strengthened its management team with the hire of David Christie, a 20-year veteran in financial services, previously the COO of Euronet’s money transfer business, which included the brands Ria, HiFX and XE. David is also Chairman of VitessePSP and investor in Shieldpay, bringing with him a wealth of experience implementing and operating both fraud and AML systems in payment businesses.

David is also joined by Matt Knowles, who was recently appointed Chairman of Bleckwen. Matt was previously CEO of HiFX, and together he and David successfully scaled HiFX into a world leading international payments company prior to its successful sale to Euronet.

David Christie, Bleckwen’s CEO, commented: “Nearly $4 trillion is stolen and laundered through banks annually – circa 3% of global GDP. Existing technologies are just not cutting it in the fight against this scourge of society. Something else needs to be done and at Bleckwen, we have made tremendous progress over the last two years as part of the Ercom Group, developing solutions to bring the fight to these criminals.”

“This fundraising is confirmation of our ‘scale-up readiness’ and the support from  Ring Capital and our existing investors is testament to our expertise in productising class-leading AI-based analytics in the fight against financial crime for banks. Using Bleckwen’s software, we are seeing false positive ratios drop by over 95%, the time taken to resolve alerts fall by over 50%, and a reduction in fraud loss ratios by over 60% – as compared with incumbent legacy-based rules systems.”

“Working very closely with our customers, which include a tier-1 global bank, we have developed a market-leading, payment-type agnostic, real-time capability to meet their fraud detection and prevention requirements at industrial scale. Bleckwen’s software can also dynamically adapt to ever-changing customer behaviours and profiles. We have also significantly strengthened our senior management team and operational infrastructure and will be opening offices in the UK and the US in 2019.”

Matt Knowles, TempoCap Partner and Bleckwen Chairman, commented: “Having co-founded and scaled an international payments company that processed $20 billion annually, I have extensive real-world experience of the challenges faced by both fintechs and banks in of the domain of fraud detection and AML. I have been deeply impressed by Bleckwen’s advanced use of machine learning technology to radically increase fraud detection over current solutions, but, as importantly, substantially reduce the volume of false positives (which build friction and cost into the customer journey). We see significant potential to commercialise this technology across banks, fintechs & other multi-national enterprises to help combat fraud and AML risk across all payment types.”

Nicolas Celier, co-founder of Ring capital, commented: “Bleckwen has appeared to us as the unique combination of state-of-the-art AI technology, built by a leading French data team, together with top international management with a solid track record of scaling up Fintech companies worldwide. Ring knew Bleckwen before the spin-off and has contributed to design this deal in order to help Bleckwen grow and scale.”

Thierry Sommelet, Managing Director at Bpifrance Growth Capital – Head of Technology, Media, Telecom, said: “Bleckwen is uniquely positioned to help the fast-moving payments ecosystem improve clients’ protection and transaction efficiency, thanks to a leading-edge AI technology and experienced management. We are very happy to see David Christie and Matt Knowles join this adventure, as well as Ring Capital. We are confident that they will collectively thrive in driving the company on its new phase of growth.”

Bleckwen was recently awarded Fintech of the year at the EBAday 2019, an event run by the Euro Banking Association – an expert-led forum for the European payments industry with nearly200 member banks. Selected out of a category of 16 other finalists, the company received the prestigious award based on the innovative and dynamic nature of its market-leading AI-powered platform.

 

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Artificial Intelligence

Power Tools Market Size Worth $40.9 Billion by 2027 | CAGR: 4.2%: Grand View Research, Inc.

Vlad Poptamas

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The global power tools market size is anticipated to reach USD 40.9 billion by 2027, expanding at a CAGR of 4.2%, according to a study conducted by Grand View Research, Inc. Demand for compact, flexible, and mobile tools is increasing in the industrial as well as residential applications. Power instruments play a crucial role in reducing manual efforts, especially in heavy duty applications; this is projected to have a positive impact on the market.

Key suggestions from the report:

  • Based on product type, wrenches are expected to exhibit a significant growth owing to several household and professional applications and affordable prices
  • The electric mode of operation segment dominated the market with the share of 64.3% in 2019. The high revenue share is attributed to the increasing adoption of cordless instruments as they are ergonomic, mobile, and portable
  • Based on application, industrial segment dominated the market in 2019 and is expected to continue its dominance throughout the forecast period. Rising number of construction activities across the globe is anticipated to drive the segment growth
  • Asia Pacific held the largest market share in 2019 owing to the growth in infrastructure and construction activities in the region

Read 112 page research report with ToC on “Power Tools Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (Drill, Saws, Wrenches, Grinders, Sanders), By Mode Of Operation (Electric, Pneumatic), By Application, By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2020 – 2027” at: https://www.grandviewresearch.com/industry-analysis/power-tools-market

Increasing use of the instruments in residential applications is projected to escalate the market towards growth trajectories. The surge in popularity of the Do-it-Yourself (DIY) technique is observed as a trend globally. Moreover, the unavailability of household workers has forced people to take up DIY jobs for household repair and maintenance. House repair, gardening, etc. is easier with the help of user-friendly and ergonomic tools which has led to increased demand for these products. Rising disposable income of the people is also a major factor influencing market growth.

Increased use of fastening instruments in the automotive and construction industry has led to significant adoption of the instruments in the industrial application. Increasing sales of commercial vehicles and growing urbanization drive the demand for the instruments in the automotive and construction sectors. Power instruments offer enhanced efficiency making them the preferred choice of workers in the industrial sectors.

The outbreak of the pandemic COVID-19 has impeded market growth in the first quarter of 2020, especially in North America and Europe. The pandemic has led to the slowdown of the manufacturing industries across the globe. However, the revival of industries and the adoption of tools in non-industrial sector are projected to upkeep market growth over the forecast period.

Grand View Research has segmented the global power tools market based on product, mode of operation, application, and region:

  • Power Tools Product Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 – 2027)
    • Drills
    • Saws
    • Wrenches
    • Grinders
    • Sanders
    • Others
  • Power Tools Mode of Operation Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 – 2027)
    • Electric
      • Corded
      • Cordless
    • Pneumatic
    • Others
  • Power Tools Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 – 2027)
    • Industrial
    • Residential
  • Power Tools Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 – 2027)
    • North America
      • U.S.
      • Canada
    • Europe
      • U.K.
      • Germany
      • France
    • Asia Pacific
      • China
      • India
      • Japan
    • Latin America
      • Brazil
      • Mexico
    • Middle East & Africa
  • List of Key Players of Power Tools Market
    • Emerson Electric, Co.;
    • Hilti Corporation;
    • Ingersoll-Rand PLC;
    • Koki Holdings Co., Ltd.;
    • Makita Corporation;
    • Robert Bosch;
    • Stanley Black & Decker;
    • Techtronic Industries.

Find more research reports on HVAC & Construction Industry, by Grand View Research:

  • High Voltage Cables MarketGrowth in offshore wind farms, increasing investments in grid interconnections along with increasing investments in transmission and distribution systems are the major factors driving the market.
  • Heat Exchanger MarketThe rising trend for efficient thermal management in chemical, oil and gas, power generation, food and beverage, and HVAC and refrigeration industries has been a primary factor driving the market.
  • Europe Industrial Air Filtration Market The need to control industrial air quality across a range of end-use industries is a key factor anticipated to drive market growth.
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Caris Precision Oncology Alliance Welcomes Penn’s Abramson Cancer Center

Vlad Poptamas

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Caris Life Sciences®, a leading innovator in molecular science focused on fulfilling the promise of precision medicine, today announced that the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania has become the 38th member of the growing Caris Precision Oncology Alliance (POA). The POA is a collaborative network of leading cancer centers with a commitment to precision medicine. These centers work together toward a common goal to advance molecular science, enhance research and scholarly activities in precision oncology, and establish new standards for molecular testing in oncology.

The Abramson Cancer Center is a pioneer in cancer research and treatment, with a distinguished history of paradigm-shifting contributions to the scientific community on the genomics of cancer. The Abramson Cancer Center harnesses the expertise of 314 Penn Medicine faculty members across 47 academic departments in its pursuit of new and ground-breaking therapeutic advancements for cancer patients. In recent months, the Center has published several studies advancing the use of liquid biopsy in cancer care across multiple tumor types.

“The Caris Precision Oncology Alliance is focused on collating the latest scientific developments in genomics in order to help ensure the availability of individualized data to oncologists and patients and to further advance the integration of molecular profiling into all aspects of cancer care,” said Chadi Nabhan, MD, MBA, FACP, Chairman of the POA. “Caris is proud to welcome the Abramson Cancer Center into our collaborative network and we look forward to their contributions as we deliver on our commitment to support precision medicine in clinical practice.”

Through the POA, Abramson Cancer Center will partner with other notable cancer centers and academic institutions to broaden patient access to precision cancer care, have early access to Caris MAI (Molecular Artificial Intelligence) offerings and establish evidence-based standards for cancer profiling and molecular testing in oncology. By leveraging the comprehensive genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic profiling solutions available through the Caris Molecular Intelligence® platform, physicians from the Abramson Cancer Center will be able to prioritize therapeutic options and determine which clinical trial opportunities may benefit their patients. Additionally, the Center’s researchers will partner with other Alliance members to contribute to and publish data, as well as advance collaborative clinical trials. These researchers will join colleagues in 15 distinct working groups, each focused on advancing research and precision oncology in a specific disease area.

“The highly collaborative scientific community at the University of Pennsylvania understands that major advances in cancer research often are the result of dedicated teamwork and combined expertise,” said Robert H. Vonderheide, MD, DPhil, Director of the Abramson Cancer Center. “We are excited to join the Caris Precision Oncology Alliance and further our shared mission to promote clinical trials that harness the power of clinical-genomic data, as well as to expand the role of molecular testing in cancer care, with the ultimate goal of altering progression of this disease in patients.”

The Caris Precision Oncology Alliance comprises 38 academic, hospital and community-based cancer institutions, including 13 NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers. The Alliance now includes over 2,000 physicians, spanning more than 425 locations, who provide services for over 330,000 people with cancer each year. Caris Precision Oncology Alliance members also have access to the Caris Pharmatech oncology trial network, which can help reduce the time it takes to identify and connect appropriate patients with novel targeted cancer therapies in clinical development.

“The Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania continues to transform the cancer treatment paradigm through new and innovative research initiatives,” said Brian J. Brille, Vice Chairman of Caris. “The expanding Caris Precision Oncology Alliance is driven by its mission to enhance the application of molecular profiling across the oncology community through its partnership with nationally recognized institutions like the Abramson Cancer Center.”

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Wuhan Development Zone attracts nearly 90 bln yuan in post-epidemic investment promotion

Vlad Poptamas

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Wuhan held the first post-epidemic large-scale investment promotion activity in south China’s economic hub Shenzhen on July 1. Market entities of the two places signed 13 projects involving next-generation automobiles, artificial intelligence, automobile aftermarket and other fields, with a total investment of 89 billion yuan. The signing of these projects highlights the unique investment advantages of Wuhan Development Zone and injects new vitality into accelerating the region’s post-epidemic recovery and creating a new highland for gathering capital and wisdom, according to the Publicity Department of Wuhan Development Zone.

The Hilton Hotel in Shenzhen’s Shekou District, where the event was held, was teeming with guests Wednesday. Peng Hao, head of Wuhan Development Zone, made a detailed introduction on the region’s investment advantages, highlighting its science and technology innovation headquarters base in particular.

Attending enterprises include senior management from Sky-well New Energy Automobile Group Co. Ltd., Sunac China Holdings Limited, Huawei and other locally headquartered leading firms in industrial, real estate and other sectors.

Wuhan Development Zone is a national development zone with strong comprehensive competitiveness in the country’s central and western regions. With an annual output of more than 1 million cars and 17 million air conditioners, it is the main venue, engine and pillar for Wuhan’s industrial and economic development. In recent years, Wuhan Development Zone has continuously promoted industrial transformation and upgrading, developed a diversified industrial support system, and stepped up investment promotion and capital introduction. Statistics showed that in the past three years, the region has signed 252 major projects worth over 100 million yuan, with a signed amount of 682.1 billion yuan in total. Among them, there are 49 projects invested by the world’s Fortune 500 enterprises and 33 projects invested by centrally administered state-owned enterprises (SOEs).

As the core area for Wuhan Development Zone’s future transformation and upgrading and high-quality development, the region’s science and technology innovation headquarters base is accelerating planning and construction. Located near the Yangtze River and South Taizi Lake, the base boasts superior geographical, transport and infrastructure conditions.

According to relevant plans, the base seeks to focus on headquarters economy, scientific research and development, and smart manufacturing in terms of industry introduction. Cooperation opportunities are open to Fortune 500 firms, large central SOEs, leading private enterprises, industry leaders, large multinational companies, well-known universities and research institutes. The development of emerging industries such as next-generation automobiles, smart homes, smart manufacturing, testing and design will be highlighted. The base aims to form a modern headquarters economic agglomeration area facing central China and radiating the whole country, and establish clusters of industrial research and development institutions and a national industrial incubation acceleration platform.

In terms of planning and layout, Wuhan Development Zone science and technology innovation headquarters base will take water as the axis to create an overall spatial structure with one axis connecting six lakes and three belts connecting four sections.

The central belt will connect sections of wealth gathering, science and technology innovation and ecological development to promote headquarters economy, research and development, smart manufacturing and waterfront businesses. The base will feature the functions of office, research and development test, commercial and residential uses. By connecting decision-making with R&D and industrial application, the base will attract high-end industry clusters and professionals.

The invitation to Wuhan Development Zone has won applause and recognition from Shenzhen’s entrepreneurs.

Wuhan is a natural investment destination for large domestic enterprises and groups as long as they want to make a nationwide presence. We are optimistic about Wuhan and will continue to invest in Wuhan,” said Zhang Jinshun, vice chairman of Baoneng Group.

Wuhan has a very good investment environment and the people are very enthusiastic. It is a safe bet to invest in Wuhan,” said Jiang Tiefeng, general manager of China Merchants Shekou Industrial Zone Holdings Co,.Ltd.

Many entrepreneurs expressed their willingness to strengthen all-round cooperation with Wuhan Development Zone to seek common development and achieve win-win results.

Focusing on the artificial intelligence industry, Shenzhen Galaxy Industry Group plans to work with China Construction Second Engineering Bureau and Wuhan Real Estate Group to invest in the construction of an international intellectual port in Wuhan Development Zone, and to build projects such as China university venture capital research institute (Central China branch), national institute of entrepreneurship, Wuhan university entrepreneurship manager training base, an incubator, a fashion shopping street and COCO PARK Phase I.

On next-generation automobiles, DeepRoute, a Shenzhen-based self-driving startup, will build a production base, R&D test center and operation center for intelligent Internet-connected automobiles in Wuhan Development Zone. It has also set up relevant technical teams around the technological transformation of core components and the development of L4-level self-driving algorithm in-depth learning technology to carry out commercial pilot operations. Another Shenzhen-headquartered self-driving start-up AutoX will set its central China regional operation headquarters in Wuhan Development Zone. The first batch of the company’s 20 self-driving vehicles will run on urban roads in Wuhan Development Zone.

To promote scientific and technological innovation, China Science and Technology Development Institute plans to build an innovation and entrepreneurship service platform and an industrial engine platform in Wuhan Development Zone. Giving full play to the advantages of the institute’s scientific and technological innovation strengths and other resources, the investment projects aim at strategic emerging industries such as intelligent Internet-connected automobiles, industrial robots, new materials and new energy. Efforts will be made to introduce and cultivate high-quality teams and projects at home and abroad, create a good ecological environment for innovation and entrepreneurship, and strive to build it into a national incubator within four years. In line with the development concept of integration of industry growth and city development, R&F Group plans to build a scientific and technological innovation center in Wuhan Development Zone to create a characteristic industrial demonstration area to gather scientific and technological innovation industries, innovation ideas and new talents.

Focusing on the automobile services market, China Zhengtong Group gathers and integrates the advantageous resources of its subsidiaries and related parties and plans to build and introduce a number of key projects such as the group’s wealth settlement center, Dongzheng finance central China headquarters base and Zhengtong logistics headquarters base. It aims to build an industrial cluster in the automotive aftermarket, development and introduce benchmarking high-end office areas, enterprise headquarters bases, financial towns and various commercial supporting industries and formats, and create diversified urban space.

Peng Hao said Wuhan Development Zone will issue the best policies, create the best environment and provide the best services for investors. All-round support will be offered in terms of new research and development, innovation and entrepreneurship in the district. Comprehensive talent services and supporting special policies on children’s schooling, house purchase and medical treatment will be provided. The zone will be a good caretaker for enterprises and talents investing and working in the district by improving the service mechanism and offering targeted services.

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