Early stage European FinTech deals include Quirk, Datavillage, Nayms etc. We feature Q&As with Ralf Heim of Fincite & Fincite Ventures and Morgan Deane, Board Member & Strategic Advisor at Spherium Labs.
7 Questions with Morgan Deane, Board Member & Strategic Advisor at Spherium Labs
1. Please tell us a bit about yourself, both at work and leisure.
I’m a lawyer by profession but have spent my career working in investment banking across Europe, Asia and the US. Currently I am the CEO of a Swiss based international investment bank.
I have always had a disruptive & inquisitive mindset, and in 16 years of working in investment banking, I have frequently seen things that have been ripe for change.
This led me to be a keen supporter of Blockchain from the early days and I remain convinced it will be a catalyst for major change in the global financial system.
Outside of this, I am a competitive endurance athlete.
I compete in Spartan Ultra (Ultra Marathon races run in the mountains, with obstacles such as carrying logs, chains, rocks thrown in for good measure) and have my eyes set on competing in an Ironman in the near future.
People are often surprised that I have the time to do this but I truly believe that sports like these help me to clear the noise from my mind and learn to focus on the things that really matter.
7 Questions with Ralf Heim, Fincite & Fincite Ventures
1. Please tell us a bit about yourself, both at work and leisure.
I am Ralf, Co-Founder, and CEO of Fincite and Fincite Ventures. At Fincite, I have the privilege to run our Grow-Team. Our goal is to increase the company´s revenue with Marketing, Business Development, and Sales.
At Fincite Ventures, we are looking for promising, early stage start-ups in order to boost their growth with our Technology, HR services and financing network.
In my spare time, my 1-year-old son keeps me busy in the best way possible. Apart from that, I am a big fan of setting new sport challenges every year to experiment, challenge myself and of course enjoying life.
Quirk Raises £300k in Pre-Seed Funding
Quirk, a London, UK-based consumer fintech startup, raised £300k in pre-seed funding.
Backers included SFC Capital and angel investors.
The company intends to use the funds to grow the team and expand its product offering.
Led by Nafeesa Jafferjee, Co-Founder and Chief of Product, and Nikos Melachrinos, Co-Founder & CEO, Quirk uses unique personality testing to deliver tailored financial advice to young professionals. The app uses a unique personality test – based on psychological principles such as the “big five” personality traits – to understand users in detail and deliver personalised advice.
Brussels-based Datavillage raises €1 million to expand ‘digital twin’ data privacy technology
Belgian startup Datavillage has raised €1 million to put consumers back in control of their data, while getting companies the data they need to sell more effectively. The funding, a mix of equity and grants, will help the company refine its platform and grow the team.
So how does the platform protect consumer privacy but also divulge consumer behaviour and match it with products? Through transparency, consent, and a ‘digital twin’ of the user.
Co-founder Frédéric Lebaeu explains: “We do this by creating a digital twin of each consumer. This twin is stored in a personal data store (PDS) that is managed by the consumer himself.
UK startup Nayms nabs £1.5 million to develop insurance for cryptocurrency
UK insurtech startup Nayms has closed a £1.5 million seed round led by XBTO, with Coinbase Ventures, Maven11, and the founders of Synthetix and Insurtech Gateway.
The London-based company wants to insure digital assets “through a collaboration between regulated underwriters/brokers and capital markets,” says CTO Theodore Georgas. Nayms is the infrastructure to make that happen.
The seed round coincides with the start of the company’s first pilot, a digital insurance contract that covers electronic theft and phishing, placed by Breach Insured for their client, Coinlist.
Lithuanian fintech startup kevin. gets €1.5 million to expand throughout Europe
kevin., a fintech startup based in Lithuania, just launched an API tool that cuts out credit cards as the middlemen in mobile payments. To scale into new markets, the company just closed a €1.5 million seed round with business angels from the finance and insurance industries.
Using the API, merchants can accept payments directly from bank accounts for services like parking, taxis, car-sharing, deliveries and insurance.
Finnish fintech Calquate raises €1.5 million to bring forecasting tool to the US market
Calqulate, a Helsinki-based startup that’s developed a financial analytics platform for startups, has raised €1.5 million in a round led by Maki.vc and joined by other unnamed investors from Europe and the US. With the new funding, the fintech business plans to expand stateside by the end of this quarter.
The platform provides advanced financial forecasting models so that startups (particularly in the metrics-obsessed SaaS world) can make smarter business decisions, particularly when it comes to investing in growth. Founders, CEOs and CFOs can rely on automated insights, without much technical knowledge or a huge budget.
Belgian startup InvestSuite raises €3M to deliver its ‘wealthtech-as-a-service’ solutions globally
In recent years, financial institutions are driving towards the digital transformation of wealth management as a result of increased regulation, lower profitability, challenging macroeconomic climate, growing competition from new players, and more demanding digital-native customers.
In this regard, InvestSuite, a Belgium-based B2B wealth-tech startup, that helps financial institutions to accelerate their digital wealth transformation, has raised €3M in a fresh round of funding. With this round, the company has raised a total of €9M in funding since its inception in 2018.
German fintech startup wealthpilot raises €8 million for wealth management platform
Munich-based fintech wealthpilot has raised €8 million to continue developing its SaaS platform for wealth management. New investor Seventure pitched in €3.4 million, and the rest came from previous investors Bayern Kapital, MIG Fonds and business angels.
The sum of assets entered on the platform is €42 billion, a tenfold increase since the middle of 2018, says the startup. The platform enables hybrid wealth management: based on an aggregation of customers’ financial information, a wealth manager is able to provide individualised advice.
Remagine Raises €20M in Seed Funding
Remagine, a Berlin, Germany-based finance platform for businesses, secured EUR 20m in seed funding.
Backers included fintech angel investors such as former Global Head of Google Payment Jonathan Weiner and former COO of Venmo Michael Vaughn.
The company intends to use the funds to accelerate its product development and expand its team.
Founded by Sebastian Dienst and Julia Profeta Johansson, Remagine is a finance platform that empowers business through accounts, team cards, analytics and payment solutions and provides financial products tailored for founders and startups.
Alma raises $59.4 million for its Klarna-like payment option
French startup Alma is raising a $59.4 million Series B funding round (€49 million).
The company has been building a new payment option for expensive goods.
You can choose to pay over three or four installments. This product sounds familiar if you’ve used Klarna in the past. But Klarna isn’t available in France.
British fintech PPRO achieves Unicorn status after raising €148M at €823M valuation: Know more here
After the pandemic began, the world witnessed a rise in the need for digital services, including the banking sector. In a recent development, a London-based fintech company PPRO, a provider of local payment infrastructure for online commerce, has raised $180M (approx €148.5M) in a fresh round of funding.
The round saw participation from Eurazeo Growth, Sprints Capital, and Wellington Management.
Prior to this, the company had raised $50M (approx €48.1M) from Sprints Capital as well as Citi Ventures and HPE Growth.
DNA Payments Acquires Active Merchant Services
DNA Payments Group, a London, UK-based vertically integrated payments company, acquired Active Merchant Services (also known as Active Payments), a UK-based independent sales organisation with more than 2,500 merchants.
The amount of the deal was not disclosed.
This acquisition brings DNA’s customer base to c. 30,000 merchants and 57,000 terminals in the UK and EU with the actual processing volumes of transactions to over £5.5 billion per annum. This transaction marks DNA’s third acquisition in the last 14 months as it plans to further expand in its core markets with more acquisitions in different segments of payments value chain planned for this year.
Led by Nurlan Zhagiparov, director, DNA Payments is an independent, fully vertically integrated payments company in UK and EU.
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