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Bolt Bags €20 Million From World Bank’s IFC to Expand Operations in Emerging Economies

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Bolt, the leading European mobility platform, announced new funding of €20 million received from World Bank’s IFC.

“We’re delighted to announce that we’ve received €20 million in funding from the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group”, Bolt said.

The investment came less than three months after the Estonian company raised €150 million in a round led by D1 Capital Partners.

Through this investment, Bolt will continue to develop mobility solutions that create earning opportunities, stimulate entrepreneurship and improve access to transportation in emerging economies. One of the shared goals of Bolt and the IFC is to empower women and improve their access to mobility.

According to Stephanie von Friedeburg, IFC Senior Vice President of Operations,  “Technology can and should unlock new pathways for sustainable development and women’s empowerment.”

“Our investment in Bolt aims to help tap into technology to disrupt the transport sector in a way that is good for the environment, creates more flexible work opportunities for women, and provides safer and more affordable transportation access in emerging markets.”

Recently, Bolt introduced a women-only ride-type in South Africa for her customers to address safety needs, enable women passengers to connect with women drivers, improve women’s mobility and access to earning opportunities.

Markus Villig, CEO of Bolt, said the goal of the company and its partnership with IFC is to Provide strategic value to emerging economies

“We are looking forward to partnering with IFC to further support entrepreneurship, empower women and increase access to affordable mobility services in Africa and Eastern Europe.

“Together with the investment from the European Investment Bank last year, we are proud to have sizable and strategically important institutions backing us and recognising the strategic value Bolt is providing to emerging economies.”

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Jury Orders Meta to Pay Voxer $175 M For Violation of Patent

Facebook parent company, Meta, has been ordered by a jury in Texas Federal court to pay $175 million to walkie-talkie app maker, Voxer, for violation of its patent.

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Facebook parent company, Meta, has been ordered by a jury in Texas Federal court to pay $175 million to walkie-talkie app maker, Voxer, for violation of its patent.

Voxer filed a lawsuit in 2020, where it accused Meta of violating its patents and incorporating its streaming technologies into its Facebook and Instagram live.

Voxer launched the Walkie-Talkie app in 2011, after which it was approached by Facebook about a potential collaboration.

By 2012, Voxer went ahead to share its patent portfolio and proprietary technology with Facebook, but when early meetings failed to result in an agreement, Facebook identified Voxer as a competitor.

According to the document filed in the court, Facebook had no live video or voice product at this time.

The social media giant company then went ahead to revoke Voxer’s access to key components of the Facebook platform, together with eradicating entry to the Discover Buddies” characteristic.

The lawsuit additionally states that the founder and Chairman of Voxer, Tom Katis had met with a senior product supervisor at Facebook to discuss about Meta’s infringement of Voxer’s patents, which was declined by the company, refusing a settlement with Voxer relating to its continuous use of its patent. 

The jury at the Texas federal court discovered that both Facebook and Instagram Live, launched in 2015, and 2016 respectively incorporated Voxer’s technologies and infringed two of its patents.

After much deliberation from the court, the jury concluded that Meta infringed two patents held by Voxer, and therefore awarded Voxer $175 million in damages.

Following this judgment, a Meta spokesperson disputed the claims filed in the lawsuit by Voxer, arguing that the proof introduced in the trial confirmed that Meta didn’t infringe on Voxer’s patents.

Meta’s spokesperson said, “We consider the proof at trial demonstrated that Meta didn’t infringe Voxer’s patents. We intend to hunt additional reduction, together with submitting an attraction.”

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Nigerian Digital Bank Fairmoney Partners With Oradian to Accelerate Growth

Nigerian online loan app Fairmoney has partnered with Oradian a cloud-based enterprise solution to expand its growth across Africa and Asia

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Nigerian online loan app Fairmoney has partnered with Oradian a cloud-based enterprise solution to expand its growth across Africa and Asia.

Through this strategic partnership, Fairmoney will leverage on Oradian platform that services over 10 million banking customers in 13 countries across Africa and Asia to accelerate its growth in these regions.

FairMoney says Oradian’s ability to support its credit assessment capabilities and the ‘plug and play’ nature of its solution were key factors in its selection.

Speaking on this partnership, FairMoney CEO Laurin Hainy said: “Our ultimate goal remains bridging the financial inclusion gap in emerging economies, and we understand the power of collaboration and partnerships in bringing this to reality.

“Since the inception of FairMoney, we have continued to serve our current markets with excellent financial products, providing the much-needed access to credit and making essential banking services available to everyday people.

“We decided to partner with Oradian to leverage the already existing infrastructure and trusted system performance to scale our solutions to new markets where they are needed and perfect existing offerings in our current markets”.

Also commenting on this is the CEO of Oradian Antonio Separovic who said,  “To be able to innovate quickly, with products that the market requires, while being compliant with changing regulations in very different markets, takes a different breed of core system.

“All of these are real daily challenges in the back-office, not seen by the customers and often taken for granted. However, we know through working with a broad range of financial customers, those challenges are very real, and in some cases, insurmountable without the right technology and an expert partner.”

The African and Asian emerging markets are in need of financial services that provide both consumer loans and working capital.

This has however created a big opportunity for companies that are able to move quickly and leverage recent technological advances in emerging markets.

FairMoney has been successful in executing this mission, after it became the leading credit-led digital financial institution in Nigeria two years after its incorporation.

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Faulty Window Automatic Reversal System Forces Tesla To Recall Nearly 1.1 Million Vehicles

Automobile company Tesla is recalling about 1.1 million of its electric vehicles citing a problem with the window automatic reversal system that does not stop even when it detects an obstruction.

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Tesla Model 3 - Investors King

Automobile company Tesla is recalling about 1.1 million of its electric vehicles citing a problem with the window automatic reversal system that does not stop even when it detects an obstruction.

This means that as the windows go up automatically, it may likely cause injury and as such does not comply with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) safety guidelines for power-operated windows.

The NHTSA said, “The window automatic reversal system may not react correctly after detecting an obstruction. As such, these vehicles fail to comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard number 118, “Power-Operated Window Systems.”

“A closing window may exert excessive force by pinching a driver or passenger before retracting, increasing the risk of injury”.

Although this recall is not for all Tesla vehicles as it only applies to certain of its Model 3 vehicles for 2017-2022, along with model Ys for 2020-2021 and model S and model X vehicles for 2021-2022.

All Tesla owners do not need to bring the vehicle to the company to rectify this problem, rather the electric vehicle manufacturer told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that it would perform an over-the-air software update of the automatic window reversal system.

The automotive company further disclosed that it was not aware of any warranty claims, field reports, crashes, injuries, or deaths related to the recall, rather it deems the recall as a safety risk.

During the product testing in August, Tesla disclosed that employees identified window automatic reversal system performance that had greater than expected variations in response to pinch detection.

After extensive additional testing, it was determined that the vehicles’ pinch detection and retraction performance in the test results did not meet automatic reversal systems requirements.

Tesla said that starting from September 13, vehicles in production and in pre-delivery received a software update that sets power-operated window operation to the requirements.

The latest software update will enhance the calibration of the vehicle’s automatic window reversal system behavior.

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