Fintech exits: Could this year mark the technology sector’s coming of age?


Twice in December the New York Stock Exchange’s famous pillars donned the colours of alternative lenders on the day their shares began trading publicly.

Financial News First came Lending Club’s red banner, then OnDeck’s blue and turquoise, for initial public offerings worth $1 billion and $230 million respectively.

The closely watched deals marked a coming of age of sorts for fintech firms, many of which are still in the earliest phases of life. They also raised the question of what lies ahead for fintech exits in 2015.

While some venture capitalists and fintech firm founders see a small, but swelling pipeline of firms ripe for public exits, others say fintech has a long way to go before it truly comes of age.

Matt Harris, managing director at Bain Capital Ventures in New York, said: “I think we’re going to see – pending market availability – a lot more IPOs relative to private exits in 2015 when looked at against the historic average.”


Within alternative lending specifically, Harris said the normal ratio of private exits to IPOs was about nine to one. But now, he said: “I think in this category it will be way closer to 50:50. There’s a pipeline that’s small, but super-fast growing.”

Social Finance or SoFi, which refinances student debt, is expected to file for an IPO this year and P2P lending platform Prosper is another closely watched candidate for a float in the coming years, venture capitalists say.

John Locke, a partner at Accel Partners in Silicon Valley, which has invested in small business funding firm CAN Capital, said: “2015 is going to be a big coming-out year for fintech.”

In addition to IPOs, Locke expects to see more M&A from classic financial services firms seeking to acquire the next generation of technology.

Venture capitalists describe a spectrum of fintech firms ready for some form of exit, with payments and alternative lenders looking more developed but wealth management and investment platforms and insurance fintech firms less so.

Harris said: “Payments are in the seventh inning, lending is in the fourth and capital markets and investments are earlier still.”

Venture capital investments in fintech firms reached a new high of $5.3 billion in 328 deals globally last year, according to Dow Jones VentureSource, more than twice the level in 2013.

But fintech is still just a fraction of overall venture capital investment.

Data provider CB Insights, which tracks US-based venture capital rounds, estimates that investments across all sectors reached $47.3 billion in 3,617 deals during 2014, the highest level since 2001. The firm does not break out fintech investments separately. There were 101 venture capital-backed IPOs, up for the third consecutive year, according to CB Insights.

Greg Brogger, founder of online trading site SharesPost, which allows investors to sell stakes in private companies, said: “A lot of successful exits in the last quarter of the year paved the way for a certain amount of enthusiasm going into this year. There seems to be support for those in the public market.” He added, however, that many companies still preferred to stay private, mature further, stabilise earnings and avoid market shocks that could disrupt their valuations.

Questions unanswered

The increased investment and visibility of fintech firms as they go public has raised the question of how the market and investors think about the companies.

Accel’s Locke said: “Lending Club in many ways is a bellwether for a number of other fintech companies thinking about the public market. Lending Club is being seen as a tech multiple, not a lending multiple or speciality finance multiple and rightly so.”

Lending Club’s stock was down about 20% from its first day of trading as of Friday morning while OnDeck’s share price was down about 40% from its first day as a public company. Personal finance platform Yodlee, which went public in a $75 million float in October, was trading more than 30% below its opening price.

Not all analysts have been bullish on the prospects for publicly traded P2P businesses. Sterne Agee analyst Henry Coffee wrote in a note about OnDeck this month: “In some ways, the rapidly growing marketplace lending and P2P business reminds us of the US prepaid card business five years ago.” He was referring to two companies that saw growth slow after regulatory scrutiny ramped up.

Amber Dolman, a partner in law firm Goodwin Procter’s financial institutions group, said: “You’ve got all the same pressures of a technology company – high, high growth but not necessarily a proven history of profitability. But when you start dealing with fintech you get the regulatory overlay.”

Scott Raney, a partner at Redpoint Ventures, said advisory was another area that held promise but where there were still questions. Companies such as Acorns, which helps save small amounts of money, and personal finance firm Personal Capital, are examples of firms on the rise in this sector.

Raney said: “They’re scaling [assets under management], they’ve had some very successful financings and are on nice trajectories, but there are still some questions left unanswered. Their models are based on AUM and they need a lot of accounts. How do you scale the acquisition of and managing those accounts?”

Public vs private

Looking at the roster of advisers on the three fintech IPOs in the third quarter, traditional investment banks, including Morgan StanleyGoldman SachsCredit SuisseCiti, and Bank of America Merrill Lynch are among the bookrunners.

But several fintech specialists say the decision to pursue a private versus public exit is largely driven by venture capital firms.

Dolman at Goodwin Procter said: “Before they listen to bankers, they’re listening to their investors and boards. The biases of a strategic investor on the board or private equity or venture capital fund is really going to guide the process as to whether or not the company is focused on an IPO or merger.”

Ex-bankers including former Citi banker Hans Morris, former Citi chief Vikram Pandit and former Morgan Stanley chief executive John Mack are among the advisers that are increasingly active in advising on investment in the sector and investing in fintech firms.

Stephane Dubois, chief executive of financial data firm Xignite, said fintech as a whole still had growing up to do before the market saw a spate of public exits.

He said: “I’m not anticipating a lot of IPOs in fintech in 2015. For a lot of the start-ups we heard about in 2014, it’s too early on.”

Source: Financial News


In the foreign metal market and the world of international rates, currencies play the crucial role of acting as the medium of exchange in the transactions that take place.

Currencies like the United States dollar, the Euro, or the British Pound are commonly used around the world in order to get a metal rate. Some companies that offer precious metal live and historical rates have exposed their APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) to allow developers to integrate current and historical metal rates, currency conversion, or other capabilities into their applications.

In order to know about precious metals live and historical rates, there’s a lot of APIs available online, and if you want to try one, Barchart is going to be one of your first options. But if you take a look at what else is in the market, you’ll find alternatives so many great alternatives:

Xignite Market Data Cloud Platform

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With more than a decade of cloud expertise in building, scaling and operating cloud-based market data technology, it is no surprise that leading financial services and capital markets firms rely on this company to empower their journey to the cloud. Their Metals API Service offers real-time prices and quotes for metals including Gold, Silver, Palladium, Platinum and other base metals. In addition to real-time precious metals prices, the service provides daily London Fixing prices as well as historical precious metal prices and metal news. 

Xignite Cloud APIs are sourced from leading providers such as FactSet and Morningstar as well as Xignite’s own curated, high-quality data.

Read the article Top 3 Alternatives for Barchart Precious Metals Rates


Each year, Bobsguide asks the market to vote for fintech companies they believe stand out from the competition – those who have gone the extra mile in terms of development and servicing their clients. Xignite is proud to be listed as the "Best API Management" vendor on the Bobsguide 2020 Rankings.

Read article on Bobsguide


Web services data provider Xignite captured the AFTAs judges’ attention on the infrastructure front with its release of Xignite Enterprise Microservices in July 2020, a suite of cloud-based microservices for data management, storage and distribution in the cloud, designed to help financial firms migrate from monolithic legacy data architectures to more agile and less expensive cloud services and data sources.

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Xignite, Inc., a provider of market data distribution and management solutions for financial services and technology companies, today revealed the results of its collaboration with StockCharts, a leading technical analysis and financial charting platform for online retail investors. The collaboration involved a move from an on-premise market data provider to Xignite’s cloud-native technology hosted in Amazon Web Services (AWS). Download the case study containing the full results.

StockCharts requires vast quantities of financial data to power its visualization, charting and tracking tools, which investors use to analyze the markets to help with investment decisions. The company was frustrated by the limits of its on-premise market data center, which was forcing the team to make architectural decisions based on what its data center could handle in terms of speed and storage, not on their technology. Its previous market data provider was just starting to build out some cloud offerings, but they were far away from what the business required. StockCharts decided to migrate its infrastructure to the AWS cloud and partner with Xignite to gain access to endlessly scalable market and financial data delivered through innovative cloud APIs.

The collaboration made an immediate impact as StockCharts was able to expand its offerings and customer base by pursuing growth strategies enabled by Xignite’s cloud-based approach, which provides easy access to data and eliminates architectural limits on storage and speed.

The pandemic provided further validation. Seattle-based StockCharts was in one of the first areas hit by COVID-19 and was forced to quickly shut down its office. Pandemic-driven market volatility followed and StockCharts customers wanted to visualize what was happening. The company’s ability to scale quickly and accommodate a high volume of new requests would not have been possible without Xignite.

“The move to the AWS cloud and Xignite has unlocked tremendous new potential for us in a lot of architectural ways, and has given us a lot of data options that we could not even consider before,” said Grayson Roze, Vice President of Operations at StockCharts. “It relieved us of the burden of figuring out how to source things. Instead, we know exactly where we need to go to get the data and can access it instantly. That is a huge, huge benefit for our business.”

“We are proud to have played a role in transforming how StockCharts approaches data,” said Stephane Dubois, CEO and Founder of Xignite. “The events of this year unleashed a massive spike in retail trading and a host of other unexpected forces that reinforced the need for financial services firms to leverage the cloud. Despite the disruption of this year, StockCharts was positioned for success, and we look forward to continuing to deliver our financial and market data solutions to the industry at large.”


Xignite has been disrupting the financial and market data industry from its Silicon Valley headquarters since 2006 when it introduced the first commercial REST API. Since then, Xignite has been continually refining its technology to help fintech and financial institutions get the most value from their data. Today, more than 700 clients access over 500 cloud-native APIs and leverage a suite of specialized microservices-delivered modules to build efficient and cost-effective enterprise data management solutions. Visit or follow on Twitter @xignite