Digital Europe: 5 things you may have missed w4

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Week 4: January 20th - January, 25th 2019

There is a lot happening in digital across Europe, so we wanted to take some of the pain out of staying up-to-date.

Hope you are having a good start to the year, we’re back with our weekly round up! This week covers some important news for the first 4 weeks of the year.


Tous trying out a Netflix model for jewelry.

Tous has taken a minority stake in the startup Verone, which has developed a platform for the 'servitization' of jewelry - transforming the traditional product based business model into a subscription service. Currently the company has five different subscription options ranging from 29 euros per month to 99 euros per month, which allows subscribers to rent pieces. In the case a client wants to keep a piece, he or she can buy it at a discount with respect to its market price. While this is a novel commercial approach for the industry, what really makes this concept feasible is that Verone has been able to secure an insurance deal, first of its kind, to protect the jewels.

You can read the the full article here, but heads up that it’s in Spanish.



N26 is now Europe's most valuable fintech.

N26, a German fintech startup backed by venture capitalist Peter Thiel, raised $300 million in a series D funding round. This now bring N26’s valuation to $2.6B. N26 confirms that this latest round of fundraising is to facilitate the company's global expansion, including into the US.

For those of you who don’t know about N26 its a slick, light weight approach to banking - “a bank that the world loves to use”. Since its launch in 2015, over 2.3 Million customers across 24 European markets have signed up for N26.

You can read more about the series D deal here.



Google hit with a €50 million fine for GDPR violations in France.

France’s data protection regulator, CNIL, doesn’t think that Google’s consent policies aren’t easily accessible or transparent and announced this week that they would be fining the tech giant €50 million (the largest GDPR fine to date). This is not Google’s first GDPR violation in Europe, they have also been accused of privacy violations by consumer groups across seven European countries over what they claim are “deceptive practices” around its location tracking.

Google announced that it planned to appeal the fine. Read more about why here.


Amazon releases their own autonomous delivery bot, which looks very similar to the one developed by an Estonian start-up.

This week Amazon has announced the release of their own autonomous delivery bot which will entry trial across multiple cities in the US. this comes months after Starship Technologies, the maker of a very similar robots, started trials in the UK carrying groceries or even a hot meal straight to customers homes. The team as Starship is taking the high road and has responded to Amazon’s new bot by saying, “[w]e’re huge believers in autonomous delivery robots. As the company that created this category, it’s great to see others realising the potential.”

See Amazon’s bot in action here.


Huawei is now cloning (Europe cities).

Huawei has been releasing products that look heavily inspired by those from Apple for years. Now, with its new Dongguan headquarters in China, the tech company is setting its sights on something even bigger to clone: all European architecture. The new campus is made up of 12 “towns” named and modeled after European cities - Granada (Spain), Paris (France), Verona (Italy), Bruges (Belgium) and Cesky (Czech Republic) now have their own replica’s in China.

CNBC have a tour of the campus, click here to check it out.