European FinTech deals this week include Express Group, Carmoola, Fidel API and RITMO
We feature Q&As with Viktor Stensson of Bokio and Daniel Andemeskel of Universal-Investment
Scaling Enterprise FinTech: with Viktor Stensson, CEO of Bokio
1. Tell us a bit about yourself and your company.
In 2015 me, Mikael Eliasson, Emma Rozada and Joel Rozada founded Bokio. Since then, our AI-powered bookkeeping and accounting software has grown rapidly. We’ve expanded to the UK and our user base is growing at an incredible pace. We have 100 employees and serve over 60,,000 monthly active users in the UK and our native country Sweden.
7 Questions with Daniel Andemeskel of Universal-Investment
1. Please tell us a bit about yourself, both at work and leisure.
Hello, I am Daniel Andemeskel, Director and Head of Innovation Management at Universal-Investment. I am currently responsible for the Group’s innovation agenda while at the same time developing the next generation investment platform for digital assets, leveraging on Blockchain and AI. Prior to joining Universal-Investment, I gained over 20 years’ experience in investment management in several functions. My motto is to envision new innovations instead of building faster horses (just like the famous quote of Henry Ford) which is why I enjoy speaking at international conferences and panels on innovation and digital transformation. Besides, I am a member of several Blockchain consortiums and forums and like to initiate collaborations on Blockchain.
Work aside, in my personal life I like to travel and discover new cultures and countries. Alongside my passion for cooking and wine. To compensate my full calendar, I am trying to do as much sports as possible, frequent morning runs are my favorite. This is rounded up with the fact that I am an early bird (waking up every morning between 4:30am and 5:00am). I use these morning hours for the innovation visioning and creative part of my job.
ExpressGroup Raises €25M In Series A Funding
ExpressGroup, a Hamburg, Germany-based fintech company, raised €25m in Series A funding.
The round was led by Insight Partners and Project A Ventures.
The company intends to use the funds to grow the organization internationally and to launch aligned products in more fintech verticals.
Founded in 2019 by Maximilian Lambsdorff, Dennis Konrad, Konstantin Loebner, Mehdi Afridi and Andreas Santoro, ExpressGroup provides fintech products for the working class and middle class, starting with taxes. Its first product, “ExpressSteuer,” uses an AI-powered backend system that allows platform partners such as accounting firms, tax consultants, and lawyers to process tax cases in a few minutes. The system uses machine learning and automation features, which in combination with manual work makes processing income tax returns easier, quicker, and more accurate.
According to a written note, the product was well received by the target audience allowing the company to grow to over €45 million GMV run-rate in under 12 months.
Carmoola raises £27m to drive ‘fintech revolution’ in motor finance
Motoring fintech Carmoola has raised £27m in a seed round, including capital from Jaguar Land Rover’s investment fund.
London-based Carmoola will use the seed round investment to develop its product and launch the initial stages of the business, which provides an automated finance check for purchasing a car.
Its motoring finance app lets users find out how much they can borrow in under a minute and has no broker commissions.
It then creates a virtual card that can be used to purchase a vehicle online or at a dealership – including at UK-founded online car retailer Cazoo.
The Carmoola app also gives customers the option to increase, pause or make single payments without any penalties or charges.
The company is aiming to bring the digital disruption of the UK’s vibrant fintech sector to the world of car finance.
“There’s an incredible fintech revolution going on. And yet, car financing seems to have been forgotten about. It’s like a complete old banger,” said Aidan Rushby, CEO, Carmoola.
“The freedom to go shopping anywhere, knowing what you can spend, without sending off reams of forms and payslips, puts the consumer immediately in control of their car purchase.”
Fidel API Raises $65M in Series B Funding
Fidel API, a London, UK-based provider of a financial infrastructure platform, raised $65m in Series B funding.
The round, which brings Fidel API’s total funding to $88 million since inception, was led by Bain Capital Ventures, with participation from existing investors NYCA Partners, QED Investors and more.
The company intends to use the funds to continue to scale its workforce and product offerings. They plan to more than double its global headcount with a particular emphasis on Engineering, Sales and Product hires. The added capital will also accelerate investments into existing products, in addition to newer product capabilities across identity verification, consent management and payments.
Co-founded by Dev Subrata (CEO) and Andre Elias (CTO), Fidel API enables developers to create programmable experiences that enhance the value of using and accepting payment cards. Its platform provides identity, data, and payments products that allow developers to capture consent permissions and securely connect payment cards to a service or application. With this infrastructure, developers are able to create highly contextualized and event-driven user experiences at the point of purchase. Start-ups through global enterprises, including Google, Royal Bank of Canada and British Airways, are leveraging Fidel API’s tools to power a range of solutions including digital receipts, omni-channel attribution, loyalty and rewards, expense management and personal finance management.
Launched in 2018, the company also has offices in Lisbon, New York, and remote employees globally.
Madrid-based RITMO hits a jackpot with $200 million funding to help e-commerce firms raise capital
The Spanish startup aims to help e-commerce entrepreneurs scale up rapidly and overcome the current supply chain challenges by providing them with capital
Offering cash-strapped startups an alternative to venture capital, venture debt or bank loans, revenue-based financing startups are gaining traction. While Berlin-based fintech re:cap raised $111.5 million in a seed funding round last year and Capchase raised $80 Million in March, Madrid-based RITMO is adding sheen to the race.
After raising €13.8 million funding in a seed round in July last year, RITMO is back with a bang. The fintech has now closed a $200 million debt funding round led by i80 Group and Avellinia Capital. According to the company, it is one of the largest funding rounds of any e-commerce finance business in Europe and Latin America. This brings the platform’s total funding raised to $225 million in debt and equity funding in its first year of operations.
The funding will be used to support the company’s rapid growth, ensuring capital is available to fuel the funding of over 2,000 e-commerce clients over the next 18 months in key European and LATAM countries. It will also drive RITMO’s global expansion strategy and plans to launch in new markets through agreements with key players in the payments and e-commerce sectors.
Advent buys MANGOPAY, doles out €75 million to fuel expansion beyond Europe
The French startup enables clients to accept consumer payments, onboard sellers, and route funds to them on a global scale
Paris-based provider of payment solutions to e-commerce sites, MANGOPAY has been acquired by US-based private equity investor Advent. The change of hands will see Advent injecting €75 million of primary capital. This investment is expected to accelerate the company’s growth. MANGOPAY will focus on international, vertical and product expansion.
The platform had earlier been acquired by French banking group Crédit Mutuel Arkéa, which will continue to hold a minority stake in MANGOPAY.
Founded in 2013, the French startup offers a payment solution dedicated to marketplaces and platforms. Its technology enables clients to accept consumer payments, onboard sellers, and route funds to them on a global scale. The e-wallet environment provides flexibility allowing for split payments, use of escrow accounts and closed-loop payments.
MANGOPAY has already developed a set of dedicated value-added services to address the needs of the rapidly growing B2B marketplace segment. Throwing light on how the acquisition will fuel the creation of a global category leader in the payment industry, Romain Mazeries, CEO, MANGOPAY said: “The new investment alongside their deep payment expertise and network will help us significantly accelerate our development. Tomorrow, global exchanges, innovative business models and new consumer habits will bring more complexity and intermediaries to the payments landscape. We are well-positioned to tackle these challenges.”
Delta Partners launches €70m fund to back 30 Irish tech start-ups
The VC plans to invest in 30 companies over the next few years, with Bank of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland as the fund’s cornerstone investors.
Dublin-based venture capital firm Delta Partners is launching a new fund with a target close of €70m to back early-stage technology businesses in Ireland.
The Delta team plans to invest in 30 of Ireland’s most innovative and exciting start-ups over the next three to four years, with a focus on seed-stage investment – where it will be the first institutional investor – and the Series A stage where companies require funds for scaling.
The fund has reached a first close with Bank of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland as cornerstone investors, supported by Fexco and several family offices. Delta plans to add new investors to the fund over the next year, to reach the target amount of €70m.
Commenting on the new fund, Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar, TD, said: “We are constantly looking at ways we can back Irish businesses, especially at an early stage when raising finance is often the most difficult.
“This fund will be a €70m pot of money, supported by the Government through Enterprise Ireland, for seed and early-stage technology businesses working on ideas that will create the jobs of the future.”
Delta is also expanding its team with two new partners. Amy Neale is joining from Mastercard, where she was a senior VP leading innovation teams focused on fintech across the globe. Also joining is Richard Barnwell, the founder of Digit Games, which was an investee of Delta Partners before being acquired by Scopely.
Andbank launches €60M fintech fund
Andbank has launched its Actyus Fintech I fund, a €60 million fintech-focused VC fund that will target startups in Latin America, Europe and the US. Andbank Group will provide €6 million in capital; the venture partners of Actyus will invest €2 million.
Meet us at:
Money2020 Europe, Amsterdam: 7-9 June 2022
South Summit 2022, Madrid: 8–10 June 2022
SuperVentures Berlin: 14–15 June 2022
Digital Insurance Agenda, Amsterdam: 29–30 June 2022
Meet Our Partners:
IDA Ireland https://www.idaireland.com
Opportunity Network https://www.opportunitynetwork.com/fintech-forum