New Funding for Savedroid Boosts Total Capital to More than $22 Million

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What would it take to get you to save a little more of your hard-earned money? How about automatically setting aside a dollar every time Donald Trump tweeted? Or five bucks each time your favorite sports team loses a match? If unique and atypical motivations are your idea of a savings solution, then savedroid has the app for you.

And this week we learned that the German startup had picked up funding from investment bank Rhineland-Palatinate and a group of angel investors including Debjit Chaudhuri, founder of Traxpay and former Infosys manager. The amount of the funding was not disclosed (Crunchbase reports €20 million) but savedroid says that the company’s total capital, which includes a million euro seed round, now stands at more than $22 million. Company founder Dr. Yassin Hankir says the funds will help “accelerate user growth.”

Founded in 2015, savedroid is headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. In its demonstration at FinovateSpring 2016, the company introduced the term “smooves” into the PFM lexicon, showing how the savedroid app makes it easy to “turn everyday activities into automated savings.” By using technology to set aside small amounts of money every time a certain event takes place – a combination of positive, negative, and even random incentives – users can improve their personal finances in ways that can improve their overall lifestyle, as well.

The company launched its savings solution in the summer of 2016 and, in February, added an AI-based, savings algorithm to the app. Profiled last fall in Frankfurter Allgemeine, we interviewed savedroid’s Hankir for our recent feature on savings technology.

SWITCH Lands $400,000 Angel Investment

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SWITCH, a Seattle-based startup that makes it easy to manage your online payment information, has raised $400,000 in funding from angel investors. The company, which made its Finovate debut at FinovateSpring last year, now boasts $1.9 million in total capital.

Chris Hopen, SWITCH co-founder and CEO, called his technology the “first of its kind, credit card updater for online accounts.” SWITCH makes it easy for card holders to update their payment methods at online merchants and e-commerce sites, as well as for subscriptions and recurring repayments like cable and utility bills. It also helps card issuers get new and replacement cards to cardholders faster, and provides issuers with analytics and data on card usage to better understand their competition. Hopen highlighted the benefit this analytics component provided for issuers, saying “If I’m in 10,000 wallets, I want to know who my top five competitors are in those wallets, so I can do something about increasing my profile and getting more sites using my card.”

SWITCH was founded in 2014 by Chris Hopen and David Pool. The company demonstrated its technology at FinovateSpring 2016, and has 10 employees. SWITCH opened early access to its free, credit card updating service in February.

Currencycloud Collects $25 Million in New Funding

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In a Series D round led by GV (formerly known as Google Ventures) and featuring participation by existing investors Anthemis, Notion Capital, Rakuten FinTech Fund, and Sapphire Ventures, cross-border payments innovator Currencycloud has raised $25 million (£20 million in funding).  The new capital takes Currencycloud’s total funding to more than $59 million.

Pointing to the rise of what he called “the building block economy,” Currencycloud CEO Mike Laven explained how firms like his add value and create new opportunities in the market. “Companies can combine services such as AWS, Google Maps, Stripe, and Twilio to build innovative new businesses fast and without the overhead of expensive proprietary systems,” Laven said. “Currencycloud provides a set of multi-currency payment and conversion tools that are helping hundreds of companies globalize fast.”

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Pictured: Chief Commercial Officer John Hammond demonstrating the Currencycloud Payment Engine at FinovateFall 2016.

Tom Hulme, general partner at GV echoed Laven’s observation, saying, “We believe in empowering developers by making it easier for them to add scalable services to their products, ideally with simple APIs,” Hulme added, “Currencycloud is the leader in providing cross-border payment services in this manner, a real need as companies globalize.” Norton Capital partner Jos White credited Currencycloud with “powering the global economy of the future,” while Rakuten Fintech Fund managing partner Oskar Mielczarek de la Miel pointed to the company’s “flagship deals” in 2016 which he said “validated the market opportunity and … huge momentum (for) 2017.” This list of “flagship deals” includes Currencycloud’s partnership with Arkea Banking Services (a subsidiary of Credit Mutuel Arkea), its agreement with fintech data control services provider, Duco, and the deal with Fidor Bank, forged late in 2015.

Founded in 2012 and headquartered in London, U.K., Currencycloud demonstrated its payment engine at FinovateFall 2016. The company added former Misys executive Ed Addario as CTO in January and, last fall, announced its participation in Monitise’s FINkit partner program supporting collaboration between fintechs and banks. A member of FinTech Forward 20’s Companies to Watch list, Currencycloud also participated in our developers conference, FinDEVr Silicon Valley 2015, where VP of Engineering Rachel Nienaber and Liam McAndrew discussed how the company re-built its API. For more about our upcoming developer’s event, FinDEVr New York, coming next week on March 21 and 22, visit our FinDEVr New York page.

Dream Payments Closes $10 Million Series A

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Canadian payments innovator Dream Payments raised $10 million in new funding this week. The Series A round was led by the investing division of Fairfax Financial Holdings, FairVentures, and takes the company’s total capital to more than $17 million. In addition to FairVentures, Connecticut Innovations, Real Ventures, and angel investors also participated.

Citing the timing of the investment, Dream Payments CEO Brent Ho-Young said the funding “propels Dream into the American market at a perfect time to serve the critical needs of businesses that are struggling to support emerging payment technologies like mobile wallets.” The company plans to use the new capital to fuel expansion in the U.S., increase its presence in its native Canada, and drive development of its third party app ecosystem. Connecticut Innovations CEO Matt McCooe praised its “unique go-to-market strategy and product offering” while Janet Bannister, General Partner of Real Ventures, spoke from the position as an “early investor,” saying “(Dream Payments is) experiencing exceptional growth as the only payments cloud powering mobile commerce for the leading North American financial institutions.”

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Pictured: Chief Marketing Officer Christian Ali demonstrating the Dream Mobile Point of Sale solution.

Dream Payments Cloud enables businesses across Canada to accept mobile payments by accessing a cloud-based, mobile point of sale (mPOS) solution. The company partners with financial institutions, who can then offer the PaaS solution to their business customers. In this way, Dream Payments helps consumers and businesses take advantage of both the latest and their preferred payment methods anytime, wherever they are.

Founded in 2014 and headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, Dream Payments demonstrated its mPOS solution at FinovateSpring 2015. Last month the company announced a partnership with Intuit QuickBooks to enables small business owners and entrepreneurs to accept a wider variety of payments including chip and PIN, cash, and mobile wallet. And, last fall, the company won the Global Fintech Challenge, taking home a $1.5 million investment award. In addition to Intuit QuickBooks, Dream Payments includes TD Merchant Solutions and TruShield Insurance among its partners and, later this month, expects to announce a new partnership with JP Morgan Chase.

FinDEVr New York Alum NYMBUS Announces $16 Million in New Funding

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In a round led by Home Credit Group, core banking technology innovator NYMBUS raised $16 million in new capital. The funds build on the $12 million the FinDEVr/Finovate alum raised in the second half of last year, bringing its total capital to $28 million.

NYMBUS executive chairman Scott Killoh pointed to reliance on outmoded legacy core technology as holding back many institutions in the financial services industry. Because of this, he said “tens of thousands of banks and credit unions are not capitalizing on strategic growth opportunities.” The investment from Home Credit Group will help NYMBUS provide FIs with the modular, third-party friendly core banking technology that will enable them to keep pace with the demands of their customers. NYMBUS President David Mitchell called it “helping … implement digital-first strategies in order to drive customer growth and competitive differentiation.”

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Pictured: NYMBUS President David Mitchell during his presentation “NYMBUS: The Next Evolution in Core Processing” at FinDEVr New York.

Founded in 2015 and headquartered in Miami Beach, Florida, NYMBUS presented “The Next Evolution of Core Processing” at FinDEVr New York last year, during which Mitchell explained why the company decided to focus on core processing technology. “If I asked who in this audience has a pager or a Walkman,” Mitchell told the attendees at last year’s event, “not too many people are going to raise their hands. “But community banks right now are on 30-year old, 20-year old technology,” he said. “(It’s) the oldest technology in the world. It’s been lipstick on a pig, mainframes, green screens for 20 or 30 years.”

NYMBUS, in contrast provides an advanced, core processing platform, SmartCore, with a wide variety of APIs, customizable UI, a conversion layer, and an ecosystem of banking apps. The platform keeps all critical banking functions in a single system with a single sign-on and data set. Home Credit International Group Head of Special Projects Miroslav Boublik called NYMBUS “best positioned to stand at the core” of the disruption of the traditional banking model today. “NYMBUS’ technology is both many years ahead of traditional banking system vendors and most viable among emerging (fintech) providers,” Boublik said.

Earlier this month we shared news of the company’s partnership with California’s Kaiperm Diablo FCU to deploy its core banking technology, SmartCore. Kaiperm Diablo’s announcement comes just a few months after Pennsylvania-based CHROME Federal Credit Union reported that it would use SmartCore as part of its goal of transitioning to a digital-first credit union. NYMBUS has also been an active acquirer, buying Sharp BancSystems, KMR, and R.C. Olmstead in the summer of 2016. Also a veteran of Finovate, the company demonstrated its technology at FinovateSpring 2016.

Finie Gets Funding: AI Innovator Clinc Closes $6 Million Series A

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Clinc, developers of the voice-based intelligent assistant app, Finie, closed a $6.3 million Series A round this week. The round was led by Drive Capital and featured participation from Cahoots Holdings, Hyde Park Venture Partners, and individual investor Stuart Porter. Clinc’s total capital now stands at $7.75 million.

Calling the opportunities for his company’s technology “truly endless,” and pointing to “overwhelming interest in Finie from financial institutions,” Clinc CEO Jason Mars sees a major role for artificial intelligence in a number of financial use cases. “We’re going to eliminate the complexity and barriers that consumers typically face when understanding their finances,” Mars said. “And we’re going to help more consumers connect with their financial data in personalized, impactful ways with minimal effort.”

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Pictured: Clinc CEO and President Jason Mars demonstrating the intelligent virtual assistant banking app, Finie, at FinovateFall 2016.

The additional capital will fuel further product innovation and help expand the Clinc team, currently at 21 “and growing,” the company said in a statement. Drive Capital co-founder and partner Mark Kvamme will join Clinc’s board of directors.

Founded in 2015 and headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Clinc demonstrated its voice-based intelligence assistant app, Finie, at FinovateFall 2016, earning a Best of Show award. Finie uses advanced natural language processing and artificial intelligence to understand and respond to unstructured, conversational speech. The technology is nuanced enough to “interpret not only semantics and intent, but the underlying meaning of user queries,” as well. Designed for financial services, Finie provides personalized advice as part of its ability to handle a variety of banking tasks, giving customized answers to user questions about balances, spending patterns, and more. Clinc includes Notion AI and fellow Finovate alum, Bankjoy among its customers.

PayPal Acquires TIO Networks in $230 Million Deal

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In a cash deal valued at $233 million ($304 million CAD), PayPal Holdings has agreed to acquire Canada’s TIO Networks. PayPal President and CEO Dan Schulman praised the way the company’s combination of digital platform and physical, in person locations made billpay “simpler, faster, and more affordable” – particularly for the underbanked. TIONetworks_HamedShahbaziChairman and CEO of TIO Networks, Hamed Shahbazi (pictured), emphasized this point as well. “We founded TIO to make speed and access part of the bill payment experience for the underserved, and we believe that we have created affordable products to serve the needs of all customers,” Shahbazi said.

TIO Networks will continue to operate as a service within PayPal after the acquisition, which is still pending shareholder approval. The purchase price of the Vancouver, British Columbia-based company, which made its Finovate debut in 2012, represented a premium of more than 25% of its recent share price. PayPal anticipates completing the acquisition in the second half of 2017.

Among the strategic benefits of the acquisition, according to PayPal, is the addition of 14 million consumer bill pay accounts with an estimated 60 million transactions processed as of TIO’s fiscal 2016. In addition, TIO Networks:

  • Processes more than $9 billion in bill payments a year
  • Accepts payments at more than 70,000 locations nationally
  • Provides access to more than 10,000 billers in network
  • Serves a wide variety of verticals including:
    • financial services companies
    • wireless carriers
    • insurance companies
    • app developers
    • national and local retail chains
    • general loan providers

TIO Networks was founded in 1997 and is headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The company demonstrated TIO MobilePay at FinovateSpring 2012. Five-year revenue growth of 125% helped TIO Networks make Canada’s 2016 PROFIT 500 list last fall, and in May, the company rebranded its consumer-facing acquisition, Chargestmart from 2014, as TIO.com. One of the top two tech companies in the 2016 TSX Venture 50, TIO was named by the Canadian Innovation Exchange as one of Canada’s 20 “hottest most innovative” public tech companies.

AutoGravity Earns Multi-Million Euro Investment from Daimler

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AutoGravity, one of FinovateFall’s Best of Show winners, picked up a major, “double-digit million euro investment” from Daimler Financial Services. The funding adds to the $50 million AutoGravity has raised since its founding in the fall of 2015, and comes as the company’s nationwide rollout reaches 46 states in the U.S.

Bodo Uebber, member of Daimler AG’s board of management, said the investment in AutoGravity was a “strategic step” in opening digital sales channels in leasing and financing. “We believe AutoGravity and its technology have the potential to revolutionize the sector for online financing while, at the same time, offering a digital platform for other financial services providers and automotive manufacturers,” Uebber said. Daimler Financial Services board chairman Klaus Entenmann called AutoGravity “a new star rising in the digital world.”

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Pictured: AutoGravity CMO Serge Vartanov demonstrating the company’s auto financing solution at FinovateFall 2016.

Quoted in AutoFinanceNews, AutoGravity Chief Marketing Officer Serge Vartanov added that the investment from Daimler was a major show of confidence in the company’s platform and potential for growth. “That Daimler has recognized the technology and sees the potential in transforming that shopping and financing experience for the consumer,” Vartanov said, “I think is a really good validation of what we’ve been building.” He added that because AutoGravity is lender-agnostic, Daimler’s investment in the technology will benefit not just its loan originations at its own Mercedez-Benz Financial Services, but will help auto lending more broadly, as well.

AutoGravity’s mobile app gives prospective new and used car buyers and leasers the ability to search for vehicles, complete credit applications, and get up to four personalized financing offers. With more than 150,000 downloads, the free app is available in iOS and Android. Read more about AutoGravity in our profile from earlier this year.

Founded in 2015 and headquartered in Irvine, California, AutoGravity won Best of Show at its Finovate debut last September at FinovateFall 2016. In November, the company announced that its technology would power the digital auto sales and finance app from Fletcher Jones Motorcars. AutoGravity’s app was listed by Forbes in September as one of the “best new personal finance apps and sites.” Andy Hinrichs is CEO.

Rippleshot Racks Up $2.6 Million in Second Seed Round

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Chicago-based anti-fraud, transaction monitoring specialist Rippleshot has raised an additional $2.6 million in seed funding. The investment, led by the venture capital arm of CUNA Mutual Group, CMFG Ventures, takes the company’s total funding to $4.6 million. Rippleshot will use the additional capital to add technical talent, specifically developers and data scientists, and will leverage its relationship with CMFG to market its solutions to 9,000 of CMFG’s affiliated credit unions.

Rippleshot co-founder and CEO Canh Tran said that the funding comes as his company finds itself “in a unique place to help bridge the fraud detection gap between issuers and merchants.” Rippleshot’s technology enables card issuers to catch card data breaches early, track trends in compromised card activity to identify future vulnerabilities, reissue new cards to customers whose cards have been compromised, and issue real-time declines to limit losses. Rippleshot’s cloud-based technology monitors millions of credit card transactions a day and the company says it can prevent “more than half of the fraudulent spend from compromised cards.”

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Pictured: Rippleshot Chief Scientist and Co-Founder Randal Cox demonstrating Rippleshot’s platform at FinovateFall 2014.

In addition to the funding from CMFG, Rippleshot announced that emerging payments specialist – and former PYMNTS.com president – Gloria Colgan will join the company’s advisory board. Tran said that Colgan’s presence on Rippleshot’s board “will be invaluable as we take the next step in growing our footprint.” Colgan was managing director for Market Platform Dynamics and an SVP at both Discover Financial Services and JP Morgan Chase.

Founded in 2013 and headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Rippleshot demonstrated its technology at FinovateFall 2014. Last fall, the company was recognized by H2 Ventures and KPMG as one of its “50 Emerging Stars.” And last June, Rippleshot’s card-compromise detection solution, Sonar, was endorsed by the American Bankers Association. A graduate of the SixThirty accelerator program, Rippleshot was a finalist in BBVA’s Open Talent Competition.

$700 Million Raised by 26 Alums in Q4 2016

Finovate/FinDEVr alums raised more than $700 million in the fourth quarter of 2016. Total fourth quarter investment in Q4 2016 was more than double last year’s Q4 total, and represented a gain of more than 40% over the previous quarter’s total.

Previous Quarterly Comparisons

  • Q4 2016: More than $700 million raised by 26 alums
  • Q4 2015: More than $302 million raised by 28 alums
  • Q4 2014: More than $1.4 billion raised by 26 alums
  • Q4 2013: More than $294 million raised by 17 alums

The biggest equity deal of the final quarter of 2016 was $180 million raised by Payoneer in October. Also worthy of note was the $115 million raised by PaySimple, and the $80 million raised by NuBank. For the fourth quarter of 2016, the top 10 overall investments totaled $593 million or more than 84% of the total alum funding for the quarter.

Top 10 Overall Investments (equity only)

  1. Payoneer: $180 million
  2. PaySimple: $115 million
  3. NuBank: $80 million
  4. BlueVine: $49 million
  5. Finicity: $42 million
  6. Nutmeg: $37 million
  7. Quantopian: $25 million
  8. Personal Capital: $25 million
  9. Lendio: $20 million
  10. SecureKey: $20 million

These Q4 numbers for Finovate/FinDEVr alums suggests that the pace of investment in fintech innovation remains robust. With a $700 million Q4, the total investment in our alums for 2016 is more than $2.3 billion. This compares to a $3 billion 2015, a $2.2 billion 2014, and a $825 million 2013.

Here is our detailed alum funding report for Q4 2016.

October 2016: More than $371 million raised by eight alums

  • Aire: $2 million – post
  • DeMystData: $7 million – post
  • FinanceIt: $17 million – post
  • Lendio: $20 million – post
  • Nanopay: $10 million – post
  • Payoneer: $180 million – post
  • PaySimple: $115 million – post
  • SecureKey: $20 million – post

November 2016: More than $97 million raised by eight alums

  • Finagraph: $5 million – post
  • figo: $7 million – post
  • Five Degrees: $10 million – post
  • Nutmeg: $37 million – post
  • P2Binvestor: $7. 7 million – post
  • Sezzle: $1.85 million – post
  • TrueLink Financial: $3.6 million – post
  • Quantopian: $25 million – post

December 2016: More than $235 million raised by eleven alums

  • BlueVine: $49 million – post
  • Finicity: $42 million – post
  • Hip Pocket: $150,000 – post
  • Kreditech: $10.4 million – post
  • NuBank: $80 million – post
  • Nutmeg: $14.6 million – post
  • Personal Capital: $25 million – post
  • Socure: $13 million – post
  • Tradeshift: undisclosed – post
  • Walletron: undisclosed – post
  • Zighra: $1 million – post

If you are a Finovate alum that raised money in the second quarter of 2016, and do not see your company listed, please drop us a note at research@finovate.com. We would love to share the good news! Funding received prior to becoming an alum not included.