Social and investing app Shares has launched its first product following the closure of a Series A funding round that raked in $40m.
The round was led by Peter Thiel’s Valar Ventures and also saw participation from Singular, Red Sea Ventures and Global Founders Capital. Following the Series A, Shares has raised a total of $50m.
Launched less than a year ago, Shares is already making moves. The company has hired 130 full-time employees and established its first three offices in London, Paris and Krakow.
The company claims it combines the simplicity of an investment product with all the features users would expect from a social media app and creates a ‘unique trading community’ offering users no-minimum, no fee access to hundreds of stocks from just £1.
Users are able to share their views on the investment they are making with their close circles when they are buying or selling shares by sharing captions and GIFs. In addition, Shares enables its members to keep track of all of their friends’ investments in real-time, support or challenge each others’ trades and react to them through likes and comments.
People who use Shares are also able to create group watchlists with their friends to track their next opportunities together and can also communicate through group chats or private DMs to discuss investment strategies with close friends and family. Users can also view friends’ profiles to see what shares they invest in as well as their aggregated profits and losses.
Prior to the launch of the app, it had a waitlist of more than 60,000. The app can be downloaded by all users from either the Apple Store or Google Play.
Shares remarked, “Unlike any other investment app currently available, Shares gives family, friends and experienced investors a single place to meet, discuss and invest, fostering long-term financial wellbeing through sharing thoughts and experience in order to grow and enjoy their investments together. By combining the social experience investors have become accustomed to, using platforms such as Reddit, Whatsapp or Telegram, with an easy-to-use, moderated investment platform, Shares combines the best of both worlds.”
Shares CEO and co-founder Benjamin Chemla said, “I am very proud of the team we’ve built in just a few months, 130 talents coming from the best tech companies across Europe in order to launch Shares, a whole new category of investing product. The app is inspired by our own experiences as retail investors and we wanted to improve people’s journey by combining trading with a community element that would radically transform the way people approach finance.
“We’re on a mission to help people connect, share experiences and invest in long-term financial wellness and a better future for themselves, together. From the UK, to Europe and beyond, launching today is the first giant leap toward giving everyone what’s missing in the experience of investing today.”
Shares CPO and co-founder Harjas Singh added, “The use of social networks has fundamentally changed how we interact with friends and family, what we talk about and how we make decisions. With being more connected than ever, why shouldn’t it improve the way we think about investments too? People are already using solutions like Whatsapp, Telegram and joining communities to talk about trading.
“We’ve realised there is a need for an investment product that allows groups of friends to invest, discuss and share their investment journey. At Shares, we decided to bring it all together. Catered to resonate with the next generation of investors, the social element is integral to the experience, not an afterthought. In less than nine months we’ve built an investing product with an incredible back-office capability with sophisticated AML & Fin-crime detection systems. We are already in a position to compete with the biggest players in the market and are on our way to build a category leader.”
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