Europe

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The European Union’s executive body, the EC, has taken a first pass at drawing up a strategy to respond to the myriad socio-economic challenges around artificial intelligence technology — including setting out steps intended to boost investment, support education and training, and draw up an ethical and legal framework for steering AI developments by the end of
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Starling, the U.K. challenger bank founded by Anne Boden, continues to execute on its “marketplace banking” vision, adding integration with Aviva-backed online investment service Wealthify. Starling already has an existing partnership with digital investing service Wealthsimple — meaning that the Starling Marketplace is getting a little more competitive — along with mortgage broker Habito, travel
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Can blockchain technology fix the soul sucking tedium and cost of back-and-forth bureaucracy? The Swiss team behind a blockchain-based platform, called Proxeus, believes it can — and that that will be just the tip of what decentralization brings down the pipe, once components such as crypto identities become an accepted (and legal) standard. Blockchain’s big
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Germany’s Supreme Court dismissed a lawsuit yesterday from Axel Springer against Eyeo, the company behind AdBlock Plus. The European publishing giant (which acquired Business Insider in 2015) argued that ad blocking, as well as the business model where advertisers pay to be added to circumvent the white list, violated Germany’s competition law. Axel Springer won a
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Facebook users in Europe are reporting that the company has started giving them the option to turn on its controversial facial recognition technology. Jimmy Nsubuga, a journalist at Metro, is among several European Facebook users who have reporting getting notifications asking if they want to turn on face recognition technology. Facebook has previously said an opt-in
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Eventbrite has been shopping again in Europe — announcing today that it’s picked up Spanish ticketing firm, Ticketea. Terms of the deal have not been disclosed. The Madrid-based events discovery and ticketing platform lets people find and book tickets for a variety of live experiences — including festivals, concerts and performing arts shows. It focuses on
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Uber has denied that its sitting CTO, Thuan Pham, met with Cambridge Analytica — the controversial political consultancy at the center of a Facebook user data misuse scandal. But it has not been able to confirm that no meetings between anyone else on its payroll and Cambridge Analytica took place. “I’m not sure who they
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Hardware isn’t easy — especially if you decline to take advantage of the global manufacturing infrastructure, build everything in a flat in London, and use only local labor and materials. But that’s what the creators of successful Kickstarter project Moon did, and they have no regrets. Back in 2016, I got a pitch for the
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The Russian state telecommunication regulator has began blocking Telegram as expected. This comes after the messaging company refused to give Russian security services encryption keys. The service is expected to be blocked within the coming hours. According to several reports Telegram is still operational in the country though several service providers have started blocking the
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A Russian court has ordered a block on access to the Telegram messaging app — with the block coming into force immediately, according to the BBC. The messaging platform has been under pressure to hand over encryption keys to Russian authorities so they can access user data — which they claim is needed for counterterrorism
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Tocano, a spinout from Delft Technology University in the Netherlands which is working on an inkless printing technology, has closed a €1 million angel round to fund the next stage of its tech development and move a step closer to building its first commercial product. The startup began as the graduate student project of co-founder Venkatesh Chandrasekar
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TravelPerk, a Barcelona-based SaaS startup that’s built an end-to-end business travel platform, has closed a $21 million Series B round, led by Berlin-based Target Global and London’s Felix Capital. Earlier investors Spark Capital and Sunstone also participated in the round, alongside new investor Amplo. When we last spoke to the startup back in June 2016 — as it
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Tandem, the U.K. challenger bank founded by fintech veteran Ricky Knox, has rolled out its second banking product today with the addition of fixed term savings accounts. The new offering enables customers to get a guaranteed interest rate if they deposit their money with Tandem over one, two or three years, and follows the launch
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Zipjet, the on-demand laundry and dry cleaning service co-founded by Rocket Internet, has picked up further funding. Described as a “Series B extension,” the new round sees the likes of Henkel Ventures, Amsterdam Venture Partners, and BSH Home Appliances Group — the combined venture of Bosch and Siemens — make a “seven-figure” investment in the
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Liberis, the London-based fintech that provides finance for small businesses, has raised £57.5 million in new funding to help support the company’s growth. The alternative finance provider makes loans against a company’s future credit and debit card sales. The majority of the new capital being raised by Liberis is debt, which in turn will enable
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This isn’t really surprising if you’ve been following Uber’s legal woes. But the Court of Justice of the European Union has confirmed to Uber France that Uber is operating a transportation company. Member countries can prohibit or punish Uber in their own countries without involving the European Union. Over the past few years, Uber has
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Cambridge, U.K.-based startup Spectral Edge has closed a $5.3M Series A funding round from existing investors Parkwalk Advisors and IQ Capital. The team, which in 2014 spun the business out of academic research at the University of East Anglia, has developed a mathematical technique for improving photographic imagery in real-time, also using machine learning technology.  As we’ve reported