Here are this week’s favourite stories across business, tech and finance from our Head of PR, Bilal Mahmood. Happy reading!

Cryptocurrencies plummet following record highs

Billions have been wiped off the combined values of various cryptocurrencies following a massive fall in the price of Bitcoin, which hit record highs this month.

Autonomous Research says more than $1.2bn was raised using ICOs in the first half of 2017, but now sceptics believe a crash is only a matter of time, says the Telegraph’s James Titcomb. Read more

WhatsApp launches business chat

WhatsApp is launching a service to help businesses communicate with their customers. Businesses can now be given a “verified profile” and will have new tools available to manage messaging.

The company is looking to expand beyond markets where it’s already widely being used for small business purposes, including Brazil, Mexico and India. WhatsApp is also looking to target bigger industries, such as airlines, banks and e-commerce. Read more

Calling on SMEs to ramp up exports 

The international trade department wants to encourage 30,000 small businesses to start selling abroad as part of a revamped export drive.

Advertising firm Ogilvy has been lined up to run the initiative, urging companies to “think bigger” and look beyond the domestic market for growth. Read more

UK takeovers on the rise

In Q2 2017, mergers and acquisitions involving UK companies were at the highest levels since 2011. The Office for National Statistics has revealed that M&A reached £30bn in the second quarter, nearly double the £16.5bn for the same period last year.

There is a rising concern over UK companies being taken into foreign ownership post-Brexit, in particular with regards to key sectors like technology and science. Read more

Changes to bank software rules

EU banks facing increasing competition from fintech firms could soon find it easier to invest in software under rule changes being discussed with regulators.

A major proposed change centres around how EU banking rules categorise expenditure on software. Read more