In a short, three-sentence blog post, Dwolla CEO Ben Milne announced that the company closed a $12 million round of funding. The investment, which brings the Iowa-based company’s total to $51.4 million, was led by Foundry Group with participation from Union Square Ventures, Next Level Ventures, Ludlow Ventures, High Alpha, and Firebrand– all existing investors.
The funds will be used to support the financial platform’s growing capital requirements and to expand its team. Founded in 2008, Dwolla is growing. “We have more than 40 openings to fill this year,” Milne noted in his blog post announcing the funding. “As we build our team, we do so knowing that the best teams are built by the inclusion of diverse ideas, experiences, and people,” he added.
Dwolla offers a white-label payments API that allows firms to credit or debit any U.S. bank account the user has connected. The company integrates with Sift Science to offer real-time identity verification to help reduce fraud. And in May of 2017, Dwolla integrated with Plaid to instantly verify and authenticate customers’ bank accounts using tokenization.
Dwolla, which most recently demoedFiSync at FinovateSpring 2015, is headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa. Last summer, the company added a multi-user feature to its Access API dashboard. In January, Dwolla began powering identity verification for Yahoo!’s Tanda savings app.
Bank access API provider and money transfer system, Dwolla, is playing a role in Yahoo!’s latest fintech venture. The Iowa-based company will be powering identity verification and money transfer for Tanda, Yahoo!’s social savings app.
Launched last week, the Tanda app divides users into groups of five or nine to pool money and save for short-term savings goals. Users group their money together over the course of a set period of time and every month, one user gets to take home the entire pot of money. The first two users to receive the funds pay a small fee, while the last recipient earns a 2% bonus.
The Tanda app is intended to be used as an alternative to credit cards or short term loans. The concept comes from a rotating savings and credit association (ROSCA), an idea that’s been around for quite some time.
Using Dwolla’s API, Yahoo! will connect to the user’s bank to move money, store funds, validate their identity, and verify their bank account. This comes exactly one year after Dwolla relaunched its API to offer a more inclusive, white-labeled API that rolls in additional features such as a wallet functionality that holds a balance of funds.
Dwolla, which most recently demoedFiSync at FinovateSpring 2015, was founded in 2008 and is headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa. Last summer, the company added a multi-user feature to its Access API dashboard. In May of 2017, Dwolla teamed up with Plaid to offer a fully tokenized ACH payment integration. Ben Milne is founder and CEO.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced the launch of a service today that it created with in partnership with Dwolla, along with collaboration with Ripple, Crosslake Technologies, ModusBox, and Software Group. The new tool is an open-source code for creating a payments infrastructure intended for unbanked populations.
Called Mojaloop, the system is named after the Swahili word for “one.” The program is aimed to empower local, unbanked communities by offering a single, secure, digital payment method that replaces the use of cash, which is inconvenient and often insecure. The code is secure and interoperable and can be used at scale to serve an entire country or region, and the open-source nature enables developers to build, enhance, or adapt the code to suit specific needs.
“Imagine your life without banking. How would you pay your bills? Or store your money for safe-keeping? For two billion people around the world, these challenges are very real,” the launch video for Mojaloop begins. It goes on to explain that the service helps users spend and save money easily and securely, while offering financial providers access to a group of new clients. Mojaloop has three main layers:
An interoperability layer, which facilitates payments made among various services, including bank accounts, and mobile money accounts.
A directory service layer, which is responsible for routing each payment to the correct provider
A transaction settlement layer, which records each transaction in each provider’s master ledger
Before creating Mojaloop, Dwolla undertook market research that took “countless calls, work-sessions, and meetings” to curate. The company described Mojaloop as “a true victory for the development of global payments” and said that the project “evens the playing field, so everyone can benefit from the sophistication of a ubiquitous payments infrastructure.”
Participating in the Mojaloop project, Dwolla said it drew from its experience in creating FiSync, and leveraged ideas from its Fast Payments Proposal. In a blog post announcing the launch, the company said, “As an organization, we are excited to see where the Gates Foundation and the open-source community, continues to strive to find a payments solution for the betterment of the global economy.”
Dwolla, which most recently demoed FiSync at FinovateSpring 2015, was founded in 2008 and is headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa. Earlier this summer, the company added a multi-user feature to its Access API dashboard. In May, Dwolla teamed up with Plaid to offer a fully tokenized ACH payment integration. Ben Milne is founder and CEO.