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The UK’s global tech exports are predicted to grow by 35% in the next five years to £31.45 billion, according to a new report by Tech Nation. The latest findings revealed that the value of tech exports is to increase by an additional £8.15 billion by 2025, despite potential inhibitors such as the coronavirus pandemic or Brexit.

 

According to the organisation, the UK digital tech services sector currently exports a much greater value of goods than they import, which last year led to a trade surplus of 55%, approximately 7% more than the average trade surplus among the top 57 countries globally. Last year, the UK was found to be the fifth largest digital tech services exporter in the world, at £23.3 billion, after India, the US, China, and Germany.

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Waitrose has struck a deal to sell online groceries through Deliveroo, sparking fueling speculation over a possible tie-up with Amazon, which owns a major stake in the takeaway courier. The deal will give customers a fast-track service from its stores to their homes, with food that could be delivered within an hour depending on conditions. Deliveroo has teamed up with other supermarkets, including Aldi and M&S, in recent months to deliver groceries to customers’ homes.​

 

Amazon bought 16% of Deliveroo earlier this year in a contentious deal that has been tightly controlled by competitive watchdogs. The ecommerce giant is already fighting to expand its presence in British online food through its Fresh arm, which stocks Morrisons products. Last month, it became the first player to offer free shipping to customers using the Amazon Prime subscription service in what was seen as a turning point for the industry, and it is believed to plan to roll out 30 of its “Go” stores without payment.

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Coty Inc., the cosmetic company, had its net revenue fall to $922.1 million, missing expectations of $1.34 billion. On Thursday Coty posted a bigger than expected quarterly loss and a 56 percent slump in sales, as the coronavirus-induced closure of stores and parlours hammered demand for its beauty products.

 

Shares of Coty, a majority of which is owned by German conglomerate JAB Holding Co., were down 4 percent in premarket trade. Cosmetics makers are battling the closure of other channels of sales, including duty free shops at airports, and also contending with work-from-home customers focusing on hygiene and personal care products rather than makeup items.

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Recently, Instagram has launched a redesigned Shop section, where users can browse products from their favourite brands and creators. Now the company is bringing a similar experience to the main Facebook app. The company said that in the United States, it’s started testing a new section called Facebook Shop — like Instagram Shop, it’s basically a shopping destination where you can find products from a variety of different businesses. This is distinct from Facebook Marketplace, which is designed for peer-to-peer sales.

 

In addition, the company is announcing new tools for businesses running Facebook Shops, including new design layouts, the ability to see a real-time preview of collections, the ability to automatically create Shops if you’re a new seller and new data in Commerce Manager. Shops will also feature a new messaging option for customers to send sellers a message through Messenger, WhatsApp or Instagram Direct.

 

On the Instagram side, the company said all sellers in the United States will be able to use the Instagram checkout feature “in the coming weeks,” managed either through Facebook’s Commerce Manager or through partners platforms BigCommerce and Shopify (with more integrations planned). Instagram will waive its selling fee for checkout through the rest of the year.

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Behind closed doors, Google is engaged in a bitter standoff with the online travel industry. The issue is global but German travel companies have been particularly outspoken. Activity booking platform GetYourGuide, hotel finder Trivago, and Airbnb rival HomeToGo have been feuding with the search giant about their unpaid advertising bills since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. 

 

Unlike Facebook and Microsoft’s Bing search engine, Google has not been overly accommodating when it came to delaying or reducing unpaid bills. Facebook offered some online travel companies an immediate 60-day delay. Bing immediately offered payment delays of at least 90 days, with ongoing review, should the recovery not start.

 

The European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, has yet to decide whether to investigate the case and it has not offered further comment. 

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Capita has scored a hefty contract with Transport for London that includes sending the body's on-prem IT systems for the Congestion Charge, and the Low and Ultra Low Emission Zones (ULEZ), into the cloud. 

 

TfL hired Capita to manage tech for the Congestion Charge when it was first established in 2003. It then replaced the integrator in 2009 with IBM only to return the contracted work back to Capita in 2014.

 

The latest five-year £355m renewal from October 2021 comprises an extension to further work on the Congestion charge's digitisation, and other fresh elements such as the expansion of the Ultra Low Emission Zone to include the inner London area bounded by the North and South Circular Roads.

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Popular London fintech Revolut recorded post-tax losses of £107.4m last year, despite strong growth in customer numbers and revenues. The five-year-old company more than tripled its losses from 2018, which stood at £32.8m, according to the company’s annual report for 2019, published today.

 

This comes alongside a similar widening of losses at digital banking competitors Monzo and Starling. Monzo’s pre-tax losses grew to £115.4m for 2019 while Starling recorded a loss of £53.6m. 

 

Revolut chief executive Nikolay Storonsky said in a statement he was “pleased” with the company’s progress last year. Indeed, the fintech also posted strong revenues of £162.7m in 2019; a 180% increase from 2018, when it reported revenues of £58.2m. That falls just shy of predictions it would triple yearly revenues in 2019, targeting £180m in sales.

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BigCommerce, an ecommerce startup based in Austin, priced its shares at $24 apiece on Tuesday, raising more than $216 million. BigCommerce’s stock opened at $68 on Wednesday, with the price going as high as $91.80 around 12:35 p.m. ET.  The company’s shares trade on the Nasdaq under the ticker BIGC. 

 

If a startup’s stock surging like crazy on its first day of trading sounds familiar, it’s because it’s been happening a lot lately. BigCommerce is one of a long string of companies to see their stock open well over its IPO price when it hits the public markets. It’s definitely a change of pace from earlier this year, considering the long IPO lull for tech companies following COVID-19 being declared a pandemic.

 

BigCommerce raised at least $219 million in funding as a private company from investors including GGV Capital, General Catalyst and SoftBank. It reported $33 million in revenue for the first quarter of 2020 and $4 million in losses during the same period. BigCommerce isn’t profitable, but most startups going public aren’t these days.

 

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When BigCommerce, the Texas-based Shopify competitor, first announced an IPO price range, the numbers looked a little light. With a range of just $18 to $20 per share, it appeared that the firm was targeting a valuation of around $1.18 billion to $1.31 billion.

 

Given that BigCommerce  had revenue of “between $35.5 million and $35.8 million” in Q2 2020, up a little over 30% from the year-ago period (and better margins than Shopify) its implied revenue multiple that its IPO price range indicated felt low. At the time, TechCrunch wrote that “BigCommerce feels cheap at its current multiple,” and that if you added “recent market exuberance for cloud shares that we’ve see in other IPOs … it feels even more underpriced.” 

 

BigCommerce boosted its IPO range by 16.7% at its lower end and 15% at the upper end. At its new prices BigCommerce is worth between $1.38 billion and $1.51 billion.​

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The UK Government has commenced a review into the nation's fintech industry, viewed as a key lynchpin in the country's economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. The independent Fintech Strategic Review, led by Ron Kalifa OBE, former CEO of Worldpay, will "establish priority areas for industry, policy makers, and regulators to explore in order to support the ongoing success of the UK fintech sector". 

 

The UK fintech industry is estimated to be worth around £7 billion to the economy and employs around 60,000 people nationwide.

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