European FinTech deal this week include Unstoppable Finance, Griffin, Super Payments and Ageras Group
We feature Q&As with Stefan Klauser of Aisot and Max Lautenschläger of Iconic Holding
Check out the B2B FinTech Radar, our microsite focused on SaaS / Enterprise FinTech founders with global ambitions
7 Questions with Stefan Klauser of Aisot
1.Please tell us a bit about yourself, both at work and leisure.
Hi, I am Stefan, Co-Founder & CEO at aisot. We are a leading provider of (predictive) analytics for the financial industry. I always had a passion for both entrepreneurial work and predictive tools. The Oracle of Delphi was by far the coolest thing in Latin class. And my first business I „founded” as a kid, when selling cherries from our garden on our village’s streets. In my free time, I like to be in nature or sing. I have played in rock bands since I was a teenager.
7 Questions with Max Lautenschläger of Iconic Holding
Born and raised in Heidelberg I started my professional career in consulting and after a few years, I transitioned more towards finance. In particular, the alternative investment space has always been very attractive to me. This is why I decided to do the MBA program at the Frankfurt School of Finance and in parallel, I did the CAIA designation. After a few years in Private Equity, Venture Capital and FinTech Company Building, I decided to found my own business Iconic, of which I’m still one of the main shareholders and managing partners.
I’ve never been this 5-hour-startup guy, who begins his business on the side while still working full-time on something else. As soon as Pat (Co-Founder, Managing Partner) and I had the idea for Iconic we went “all-in”, quit our jobs, moved to Berlin and bootstrapped our startup. And so far, it seems as if it has been the right approach. If you love something and are convinced of its potential, just do it! The worst result could be failing and even this will give you more joy, experience, and learnings than any corporate job could.
When it comes to leisure time, I love sports, spending time with good friends and traveling. Since I think relationships are one of the most important things in life, I try to see all of my friends on a weekly basis. Independently from how busy I am, I try to fit sports into my schedule 5 times a week since this refreshes not only my body but also my mind.
German fintech Unstoppable Finance bags €12.5M to build DeFi wallet and investing platform
Unstoppable Finance, a Berlin-based fintech firm, announced on Wednesday that it has secured €12.5M in a Series A round of funding led by Lightspeed Venture Partners.
New investor Anagram also participated in the round along with existing investors Speedinvest, Rockaway Blockchain Fund, Backed, Inflection, Discovery Ventures, and Fabric Ventures.
The Series A round was closed in early July, nine months after raising €4.5M in a Seed round.
The German company says it will use the funds to launch and scale its DeFi wallet & investing platform, Ultimate, announced last month. Soon after the official announcement, the platform quickly garnered interest from over 300K beta users globally who joined the waitlist, says the company.
Maximilian von Wallenberg-Pachaly, co-founder and CEO of Unstoppable Finance, says, “We are proud and excited to attract such prominent investors, especially during this tough market environment. With this funding, we’ll pursue our mission to bring DeFi to retail investors worldwide with our app Ultimate. We’d like to thank our old and new investors for their vote of confidence and trust in our product and our mission.”
Lightspeed Venture Partners is a multi-stage venture capital firm focused on accelerating disruptive innovations and trends in the Enterprise, Consumer, and Health sectors. Over the past two decades, the Lightspeed team has backed hundreds of entrepreneurs and helped build more than 400 companies globally, including Snap, Affirm, Nest, Nutanix, AppDynamics, MuleSoft, OYO, Guardant, and GrubHub. Lightspeed and its affiliates currently manage $10.5B across the global Lightspeed platform, with investment professionals and advisors in Silicon Valley, Israel, India, China, Southeast Asia and Europe.
UK fintech Griffin lands £12.5m in latest funding round
Super Payments Raises $27M in Funding
Super Payments, a London, UK-based payments startup, raised a $27m in funding.
The round was led by Accel, with participation from Union Square Ventures, LocalGlobe, and angels.
The company intends to use the funds to continue to continue to develop the platform, expand operations and its business reach.
Founded in 2022 by Samir Desai CBE, founder of Funding Circle, and a team of experienced executives, Super Payments aims to transform the online shopping experience powering free payments for businesses, and rewarding shopping for members. Instead of charging merchants transaction fees, businesses on Super will only pay a commission if it brings to an increase in sales.
Accel is a leading venture capital firm that invests in people and their companies from the earliest days through all phases of private company growth. Atlassian, Braintree, Cloudera, CrowdStrike, DJI, Dropbox, Dropcam, Etsy, Facebook, Flipkart, FreshWorks, Jet, Qualtrics, Slack, Spotify, Supercell, UiPath and Vox Media are among the companies the firm has backed over the past 35 years.
Amsterdam-based Tellow’s parent company Ageras Group raises €35M to help SMEs with their financial need
Ageras Group, a Danish fintech startup, announced on Thursday that it has secured €35M in growth capital financing from CIBC Innovation Banking.
Earlier this year, the Copenhagen-based company raised €30M from a group of European and American investors. The round brings the total fund raised to $145M (approximately €140M) since 2021.
The latest funding announcement comes a few days after acquiring Berlin-based neo-bank Kontist, its third acquisition in the last 12 months.
Ageras Group will use the funds to accelerate its strategic acquisitions pipeline and to expand its suite of software tailored to small businesses.
“CIBC Innovation Banking’s investment will help us focus on the mission: acquiring companies whose tech can fit into—and enrich—Ageras’ one-and-done financial cockpit for small businesses,” says Ageras Co-founder and CEO Rico Andersen.
He adds, “In the last year, we’ve acquired and added three companies to our product offering. Now, with CIBC Innovation Banking’s €35m investment, we’ll look to buy more, especially companies that have developed best-in-class products that either cement our position in one market or add mission-critical features that we can offer to all existing customers.”
Sesami acquires FinTech Planfocus
Sesami Cash Management Technologies, a global cash ecosystem integrator and technology company, announced its acquisition of Planfocus Software GmbH, a global FinTech offering highly advanced cash optimisation technology.
“With this acquisition, Sesami becomes the global leader in cash optimisation solutions, with an unrivalled technology stack now up-scaled with the addition of planfocus’ cutting-edge cash optimisation software,” said Steph Gonthier, Chief Executive Officer of Sesami. “Integrated to our enterprise cash ecosystem software platform, planfocus’ AI based technology and strong team will further enable Sesami to deliver the only true end-to-end tech-enabled cash ecosystem solution to financial institutions and consumer businesses,” he added.
Founded in 2004 and based in Munich, Germany, planfocus’ cash optimisation software solutions help reduce logistics spending and cash holding costs while improving availabilities and service levels for clients. Its technology empowers financial institutions and consumer businesses worldwide to drive process optimisation and bring tangible cost and service efficiencies throughout their cash ecosystem.
“We are extremely proud to be joining forces with Sesami, a state-of-the-art innovator and disruptive global leader, to offer a true end-to-end and fully integrated cash software solution enabling financial institutions and consumer businesses to seamlessly manage and outsource their entire cash ecosystem. As part of Sesami, we will now be able to truly scale our next generation technology and bring our unmatched cash optimisation solutions to a broader global client base,” said Dr. Joachim Walser, CEO and Co-Founder of planfocus.
The integration of planfocus further expands Sesami’s global client portfolio to include some of the world’s leading financial institutions and consumer businesses. Integrating its existing technology stack will also broaden its cash optimisation offering for its client base. Currently, planfocus optimises the operations of over 78,000 bank branches, ATMs and cash processing centres, and driving over 300 billion Euros in physical cash shipments every year.
London-based VC 2xN unveils $120 million fund to back quantum computing startups
The ticket size of investment will range from $3 million to $5 million starting from pre-seed to Series A in each company in Europe
London-based VC 2xN has rolled out $120 million fund to back startups in quantum computing across Europe. Bringing high-growth value of network effects to early-stage founders, 2xN’s Fund II will invest in up to 25 early-stage startups in Europe and the U.S.
The ticket size of investment will range from $3 million to $5 million starting from pre-seed to Series A in each company. The fund will focus on quantum startups and companies in the sectors of mobility, collaboration, marketplace and edtech.
The company had earlier unveiled its first fund of $50 million in stealth mode in 2021. The last fund had made 21 investments in companies, including Quantinuum, and StudySmarter.
The 2xN’s oversubscribed fund is backed by the Danish Growth Fund and several family offices, including the founders of e-scooter startup Voi and wine marketplace Vivino; and Ilyas Khan, founder of Quantinuum. The fund reflects the rise of serial entrepreneurs and operators turning to invest in an increasingly mature European market. While it’s a trend that has gained momentum in the U.S, single GP funds are still a rarity in Europe.
The company’s colloabrative approach has already seen 2xN co-invest alongside the likes of Sequoia, A16Z, Kleiner, Founders Fund, Accel, YCombinator, and Owl Ventures, while getting access to oversubscribed rounds.
Talking about the new fund, Lars Fjeldsoe-Nielsen, general partner and co-founder of 2xN said: “Instead of being just another fund, I believe 2xN represents a key moment in the evolution of European VC. Ex-operators and founders are increasingly becoming investors, while the speed of startups increases, and founders are repeat entrepreneurs. This represents a huge opportunity for Niels and I to help share decades of experience, strengthen global networks and build an ecosystem of investment with the next-generation of founders and their innovations. This is only possible by shifting away from the closed systems of old and creating a culture of openness, transparency and shared deals in a way that benefits everyone.”
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