Newsletter 14th Feb. 2020

Laka’s latest funding from Creandum and LocalGlobe is a great confirmation of its “back to the roots”, community-based model for bicycle insurance: we will be watching this space! The round raising eyebrows is Saudi Aramco’s bet on blockchain-based oil-trading platform Vakt. Rimilia and SteelEye both represent bets on serious enterprise-grade solutions, automating and reducing complexity in the payments and compliance space respectively. While N26 decided to exit the UK market, local scale-ups Azimo and Starling Bank continued to pump in serious money post-Brexit.

Register for the 12th FinTech Forum – the exclusive annual event featuring Europe’s leading FinTech startups and C/VCs covering investment trends – 19th Nov. 2020 at The Airport Club, Frankfurt:

7 Questions with Wladimir Huber of Clickown

1. Please tell us a bit about yourself, both at work and leisure. My name is Wladimir Huber. I am a Tech-Entrepreneur with focus on FinTech, Real Estate, Blockchain and data driven companies with an extensive knowledge in founding and scaling companies. I have a M.A. in finance & information technology from Leuphana University. I’m currently living in Hamburg, Germany. I am a big fan of technology, investing, innovation, reading and personal development…

7 Questions with Wladimir Huber of Clickown

7 Questions with Ben Shaw, Director of Programs at the InsurTech Hub Munich

1. Please tell us a bit about yourself, both at work and leisure. Difficult to separate the two: For work my team and I connect all dots needed to accelerate the insurance industry. We bring structure through proven frameworks to companies attempting to reach product/market fit, help insurers open up to outside talent and work with investors to better understand a companies’ potential.

Prior to the InsurTech Hub Munich I ran FinTech Innovation Programmes for Barclays in London and New York, connecting the bank to FinTech founders.


7 Questions with Ben Shaw, Director of Programs at the InsurTech Hub Munich

Geneva-based e-Potek raises almost €1 million to digitalize mortgage financing in Switzerland
Swiss startup e-Potek has announced first fundraising of €934K, 18 months after its launch. Founded in 2018 in Geneva, e-Potek is digitalising mortgage financing…The investors involved include the CFO of Property Finder Group, Simon Comina, the CEO of Virtual Network SA, Stéphane Pictet, and the founder of Realforce, Léonard Cohen.

Insurtech: London-based Laka Secures €4.2 Million for Ongoing Development and Expansion of its Bicycle Insurance Services

London-headquartered firm Laka has secured €4.2 million for the ongoing development of its bicycle insurance platform. The firm will be establishing its European headquarters in Amsterdam and will use the funds raised to further expand its operations across Europe. Laka’s latest investment round was led by venture capital companies LocalGlobe and Creandum. Others who also took part in the round include: Yes VC, the venture capital firm established by Caterina Fake, co-founder of Flickr, Jyri Engeström, co-founder at Jaiku and Ditto, and several other angel investors.

VC Division of World’s Most Profitable Firm Saudi Aramco Invests $5 Million in Blockchain-based Oil Trading Platform, Vakt

The venture capital division of the most profitable firm in the world, Saudi Aramco, has reportedly invested $5 million in a blockchain-enabled oil trading platform, called Vakt.
Vakt’s management confirmed the news on January 28, noting that Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures is now among its 12 major shareholders. Vakt says it plans to use the funds raised to expand into new markets, with a special focus on offering services to companies in Asia.

SteelEye Raises $10m in Series A Funding

SteelEye, a London, UK-based compliance technology and data analytics company, raised $10m in Series A funding. The round was led by the FinTech Strategic Investments team at Eight Roads, the proprietary investment firm backed by Fidelity, alongside existing investor Illuminate Financial. The company, which has raised $20m to date, intends to use the funds to continue to expand operations and its business reach.

UK Fintech Rimilia Raises $15 Million Through Latest Investment Round
Rimilia, a UK-based SaaS fintech, announced earlier this week it raised $15 million through its latest investment round, which saw participation from Eight Roads Ventures and Kennet Partners, and Silicon Valley Bank.
The company, which was founded in 2008, revealed it provides intelligent, finance automation solutions that enable organizations to control cash flow and cash collection in real-time. Its software solution notably uses analytics and artificial intelligence to predict customer payment behavior and match/reconcile payments.

Azimo, the money transfer service, secures €20M debt finance from the European Investment Bank

Azimo, the money transfer service that is HQ’d in London but has the majority of its staff based in based in Poland, has secured €20 million in debt from the European Investment Bank (EIB), the lending arm of the European Union. The financing is supported by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the financial pillar of the EU’s “Investment Plan for Europe.”

Challenger bank Starling Bank snaps up €70.7 million to expand and award employees shares
UK fintech Starling Bank has today announced raising €70.7 million from its existing investors, Merian Global Investors and JTC. The investment will bring the total raised by Starling to €380.6 million and follows two funding rounds of €123.7 million in aggregate led by Merian in 2019. Starling Bank, founded in 2014 by Welsh banking veteran Anne Boden, is racing ahead as one of the top challenger banks to watch.

German digital bank N26 pulls out of UK, blaming Brexit
The German digital bank N26 is has blamed Brexit for its decision to pull out of the UK and close more than 200,000 customer accounts. The lender has given customers less than two months to move their money, with all UK accounts to be closed by 15 April. It has also stopped offering new accounts to UK residents. The move comes less than 18 months after the Berlin-based firm launched in the UK. It had about a dozen employees in the UK, with the rest of the business run remotely from the German capital.

Patrizia buys real estate fintech BrickVest
London-based online real estate investment platform BrickVest has been bought by German outfit Patrizia. Financial terms were not disclosed. Founded in 2014, BrickVest lets clients invest in pre-vetted real estate deals from over 1000 sponsors, all online.

Patrizia, which has been in the real estate investment management business for more than 35 years, says the deal will give BrickVest access to a new global network of investors, industry partners and banks.
Money2020- Europe’s biggest FinTech event is back: Amsterdam, 16-18 June 2020 
The relationships that are built here will shape the future of money. See what will drive the industry before it hits the industry. Enjoy three days of networking-rich opportunities that bring together the most brilliant minds to deliver the next frontier of Financial Services.
From the next generation of FinTech super starts, established power houses and trailblazing start-ups from across the payments, FinTech and financial services ecosystem, everyone is here, every time.

We are proud to be partnering with @money2020 on #M2020EU – use our code MP20FOR for €200 off your ticket –

Meet us at:

Cyber FinTech Summit 2020, The Hague, 20 Feb.

Global InsurTech Summit, London, 2-6 Mar.

Lloyds Lab Innovation Forum, London, 4 Mar.

InsurTech Insights Europe, London,  17-18 Mar.