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Tracking fintech, banking & financial services innovations since 1994
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Central and Eastern Europe
Business Review looks at the potential for French-Romanian cooperation on fintech innovation.
Relex, a cryptocurrency-based real estate development investment platform, inks agreement with Belarus Currency and Stock Exchange.
UK-based international payments fintech TransferWise has doubled its value to $3.5 billion after raising $292 million in secondary funding, reports Jane Connolly of Fintech Futures (Finovate’s sister publication).
The Telegraph reports that the round was led by investors including Lead Edge Capital, Lone Pine Capital and Vitruvian Partners. The Sir Richard Branson-backed firm also received investment from BlackRock and existing investors Andressen Horowitz and Baillie Gifford.T
TransferWise’s strategy of providing cheap exchange rates by using two local transfers for each transaction, instead of more expensive single international payments, has attracted more than five million customers since the fintech was founded in 2011.
According to The Telegraph, TransferWise will use the funds to take on 750 more staff over the next year.
“TransferWise is experiencing phenomenal growth and this investment is testament to that,” said Kristo Käärman, chief executive and co-founder. “We don’t need to raise funds on this trajectory, but we’re humbled by the persistent level of interest.”
TransferWise handles a transaction volume of $5.1 billion across its 12 global offices every month. The company demonstrated its technology at FinovateEurope 2013.
“Recognition as a leading innovator in fintech is tremendous validation for the hard work we’ve done at Marqeta to open the industry up to the possibilities and opportunities of modern card issuing,” company CEO and founder Jason Gardner said. Marqeta is among the 20 companies to make its first appearance on the Forbes Fintech 50 roster.
Also earning their first appearances on Forbes Fintech 50 roster are New York based mobile investment platform Stash and San Francisco supply chain payments innovator Tradeshift.
“Very excited to be included in the 2019 Forbes Fintech 50!,” Stash tweeted once the news was released at the start of the week, “Monday = made.”
“We made the list!” Tradeshift tweeted this morning.
Summarizing this year’s selection of top fintechs, the editors noted that while 19 out of the 50 fintechs featured are unicorns with valuations of more than $1 billion, a nearly equal amount – 20 startups – are making their first showing on Forbes top fintech list. The two areas where newcomers were more prevalent, according to the editors, were payments technology and startups serving the un- and underbanked.