Nordic neobank Lunar extends Series B round to add €20m to its war chest

Challenger banks in the Nordics are on the rise with Danish Lunar being the latest neobank to fill its coffers.

It has been a big week for Nordic neobanks. First Icelandic FinTech indó announced the closure of its €1m seed round and now Danish competitor Lunar has revealed that it has raised an additional €20m by extending its Series B round.

The new investment brings the total raised in this round to €46m. The bank originally raised €26m in its Series B round in August 2019. At the same time it announced that it had acquired its European banking licence from the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority. It had previously raised €4.2m in 2016.

Seed Capital, the Danish venture capital firm that led the round in August, returned to lead the extension of the raise. Greyhound, Socii and Augustinus also participated, TechCrunch reported.

“We are pleased to extend our latest funding round and bolster Lunar’s pan-Nordic play,” says Ken Villum Klausen, co-founder and CEO of Lunar, told TechCrunch. “We have a vertical strategy focusing only on the Nordics, allowing us to go deep into the defensive banking infrastructure.”

As part of the news, Lunar announced that Monzo’s former head of product Ole Mahrt will join the company’s board of directors.

The news comes after Lunar launched its new bank in March.

Lunar and indó’s raises adds to the signs that the Nordic neobank sector is slowly coming into its own. As FinTech Global has reported in the past, several new challenger banks have made waves in the region recently.

For instance, Swedish challenger bank Northmill was granted a banking licence in September 2019. It has since launched a new card and a savings account.

Rocker, formerly known as Bynk, raised the fourth biggest FinTech investment round in Sweden in 2019.

Part of the reason why it is happening now is because the Scandinavian banking industry has been suffering through an extensive money laundering scandal, originating with the discovery that roughly $223bn in suspicious transactions had been funnelled through Danish lender Danske Bank. Several other banks in the region have been caught in the shock waves.

And the new breed of digital banks are making no secret that they trying to use the scandal to their advantage.

Morten Sønderskov, COO at Lunar, recently said their “ability to start [with] a clean [slate]” and to be “completely transparent” about what it does with customers’ data has become a big selling point.

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