Early stage European FinTech deals include LemonEdge, Cyber Guru, wajve etc. We feature Q&As with Michael Mueller of Form3 Financial Cloud and Stefan Lemper of Maschmeyer Group.
Scaling Enterprise FinTech: Stefan Lemper of Maschmeyer Group
1. A year since the first lockdowns- is this is a good time to be building or scaling an Enterprise FinTech (/ InsurTech) firm in Europe?
Big economic shocks usually open the way for new chances and extremely successful starts were founded during such times. One of the key changes for enterprise startups due to the pandemic is the fact, that sales can be done purely digital and I assume that most of that will stay. This brings bears huge cost and efficiency gains in sales being on of the key ingredients for scale. Customers who were forced to turn more digital and a huge increase in private savings might also fuel growth of new business models in fintech/Insurtech, that can also leverage on lean digital cost structures compared to the incumbents. Last but not least the pandemic lead to increased M&A activities (at high valuations).
Scaling Enterprise FinTech: with Michael Mueller of Form3 Financial Cloud
1. Tell us a bit about yourself and your company.
I grew up in Germany and started working for Deutsche Bank after finishing school in 1988. Soon after I joined banking, I developed an interest in transaction banking and payments when I helped the bank build its international cash management business. After more than 20 years with Deutsche Bank in Germany, Singapore, Sidney and London I moved to Barclays where I joined the Corporate Banking Executive Committee in charge of their cash management and payments business. In 2016, I left banking and founded together with some colleagues Form3, a UK-based payment technology company. Over the past 4.5 years, we have completed several funding rounds and the business has grown to about 200 colleagues. We employ staff in more than XX countries in Europe with about XX different nationalities. We have two offices in London and Amsterdam, but most of my colleagues have been operating on a fully remote basis from day 1.
Form3 provides cloud-native payment technology to regulated financial institutions, we are processing millions of payments every month for payment service providers, challengers and large Tier 1 banks in the UK and in Europe.
These two Q&As are part of Scaling Enterprise FinTech | The Handbook, featuring Q&As on the journey to scale, lessons learnt etc. with 16 founders and 10 leading investors.
UK Fintech LemonEdge Secures $2.5M in Oversubscribed Round led by Sidekick Partners
London-headquartered Fintech firm LemonEdge (previously doing business as LemonTree Software) has acquired $2.5 million in capital as part of an oversubscribed round that was led by Sidekick Partners, a venture firm with strong ties to the North American private equity industry.
Sidekick Partners is joined in this latest investment round by Tikhon Bernstam, founder of Parse and Scribd, and Lauren Iaslovits, founder of Investran and a pioneer of private capital market technologies.
As mentioned in a release shared with CI, LemonEdge enables companies operating in the private equity and financial services sectors to digitize complex accounting processes, many of whom may be running on outdated, unsecure legacy systems or spreadsheets.
The Global Financial Services Application Software Market is valued at around $144 billion and it’s on track to expand by 8% by 2025.
Cyber Guru Raises € 3.6M in Series A Funding
Cyber Guru, a Milan, Italy-based cyber security awareness training platform, raised € 3.6M in Series A funding.
The round was led by P101 SGR, which invested €2.1m through its second fund, P102, and through ITALIA 500 (Azimut Group), with participation from Adara Ventures, which invested €1.5m.
The company will use the funds to further product development and scale internationally across Europe.
Founded in 2017 by Gianni Baroni, CEO, and bootstrapped until this round, Cyber Guru is a Cyber Security Awareness training platform designed to increase company’s cyber resilience by strengthening the human factor.
Berlin’s financial app for Gen Z wajve raises €5 million in seed round
Berlin-based financial app for Gen Z wajve has raised €5 million in a seed round led by EQT Ventures with participation from 468 Capital. Angel investors Lucas von Cranach (CEO of OneFootball), Roland Grenke (co-founder of Dubsmash and Acapela Group), and Christian Gaiser (CEO of COSI) are also on board. Wajve is reporting that the funding will be used to accelerate the roll-out of the platform in Germany before expanding into additional European markets.
Founded in 2021 by Bastian Krautwald and David Meyer is a financial platform that offers banking, financial advice, and education all under one umbrella, with the specific goal of meeting the digital native Gen Z generation, who now compromise 32% of the global population.
Ecommerce fintech Booste plots London launch after €12m funding round
Booste, a Polish fintech offering revenue-based financing to ecommerce companies, is planning to launch in London after raising €12m (£10m) in a fresh funding round.
The startup, which was co-founded by former Uber Eats executive Jakub Pietraszek, provides ecommerce firms with funding to finance growth through digital ads on Facebook and Google, marketing campaigns and inventory spend.
Hokodo Raises $12.5M in Series A Funding
Hokodo, a London, UK- and Paris, France-based B2B Buy Now Pay Later provider, raised $12.5m in Series A funding.
The round was led by Mosaic Ventures with participation from Anthemis, Notion Capital and angel investors including Taavet Hinrikus, founder of TransferWise (now Wise), Thijn Lamers, former EVP, Global Sales of Adyen, Max Bittner, CEO of Vestiaire Collective and founder of Lazada and Rich Laxer, ex-Chairman and CEO of GE Capital.
The company intends to use the funds to further develop its proprietary digital credit technology and extend its services across Europe, supporting the growth of the $12TN B2B commerce space
Founded in 2018 by Richard Thornton, Louis Carbonnier and Sami Ben Hatit, Hokodo provides B2B merchants with real-time trade credit solutions.
Upflow raises $15 million to manage your outstanding invoices
French startup Upflow has raised a $15 million Series A round. The company wants to help you chase late payments. It optimizes how you collect payments from your customers in order to improve your cash-cycle.
Investors in today’s funding round include 9yards Capital, existing investor eFounders, as well as N26 co-founder Maximilian Tayenthal, Uber SVP of Delivery Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty, auxmoney co-founder and CEO Raffael Johnen.
People who run a business often tell you that getting paid is a consuming task. When you create an invoice, chances are your customer will wait a few weeks before paying you. Most companies end up with a backlog of outstanding invoices sitting in an Excel spreadsheet.
Bristol-based cybersecurity skills trainer Immersive Labs raises $75 million in Series C round
Bristol’s Immersive Labs, which measures and helps companies improve cybersecurity skills across technical and non-technical teams has raised $75 million in a Series C round led by new investors Insight Partners The round also saw participation from Menlo Ventures, Citi Ventures, and existing investor Goldman Sachs Asset Management.
Immersive Labs is reporting that the new funds will be used to accelerate delivery of a new product lineup and expand international presence with a focus on the European and APAC markets. Including this round, the firm has raised $123 million across 5 rounds.
Much like we reported last week with Milan’s Cyber Guru’s raise of €3.6 million, cybersecurity is become a major issue, and not just for individual attacks, but the costs associated with corporate breaches can be severe.
Klarna Raises USD 639M in Funding; Valued at USD45.6 Billion
Klarna, a Swedish global payments provider, retail bank, and shopping service, raised USD$639m in equity funding.
The round, which post-money valued Klarna at USD 45.6 billion, was led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund 2 with participation from existing investors Adit Ventures, Honeycomb Asset Management and WestCap Group, Klarna’s other investors include Sequoia Capital, SilverLake, Dragoneer, Permira, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Bestseller Group, Ant Group, Northzone, GIC – Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund – as well as funds and accounts managed by BlackRock and HMI.
The company intends to use the funds for international expansion and global retail growth.
Led by Sebastian Siemiatkowski, Founder and CEO, Klarna enables consumers to shop, pay and bank via smart tools including a consumer shopping app, used by 18m customers worldwide as well as at over 250,000 retailers globally.
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