Over $1bn was raised by FinTech companies last week

Just over $1bn was raised by the 33 FinTech companies to close funding rounds last week.  

The US dominated the top ten deals of the week, accounting for eight of them. The other countries to be represented in the biggest funding rounds were Canada with QuadFi and Hungary through SEON.

As for sectors, CyberTech proved to have a strong week. Of the biggest ten funding rounds, four of these were by CyberTech companies. One of these companies was Fortress, a provider of supply chain risk management services for critical infrastructure. The company’s services help protect 40% of the US power grid.

Another CyberTech to bag a big funding round this week was ThreatLocker. The company raised $100m for its Series C as it looks to boost product development and hire more staff. It claims it safeguards clients with effective zero trust approach to cybersecurity.

Here are the 33 funding rounds of last week.

Oyster joins unicorn club amid distributed work movement

Oyster, a global employment platform, has raised $150m in Series C funding, propelling it to unicorn status less than two years after its launch.

Georgian, who led the round, was joined by Salesforce Ventures, LinkedIn, the Base10 Partners Advancement Initiative, Okta, and Endeavor Catalyst, along with existing investors Stripes, Emergence Capital, PayPal Ventures, Slack Fund, Avid Ventures, PeopleTech Partners, and HR Tech Investments, an affiliate of Indeed.

Founded in 2020, Oyster describes itself as global employment platform that empowers companies to hire, pay, and care for their global teams. The company said it enables growing companies to give valued international team members the experience they deserve, without the usual headaches or expense.

Oyster’s Series C follows a pair of funding rounds in 2021, including a Series A in February and a Series B in June. The company has raised a total of $227 million to date. Oyster plans to use the Series C funding to further develop its global employment platform and invest in the People Ops community. In addition, the company will continue its work toward creating a gold standard distributed culture and delivering on its high-impact social mission.

Oyster said its continued momentum speaks to the overall power of the distributed work movement, with the best companies in the world increasingly choosing to hire talent wherever it is found, while empowering their teams to work from anywhere. Oyster customers, who can recruit job seekers in over 180 countries, already use the platform to pay more than $200m to global talent each year, with 25% of that talent living in emerging economies.

Goldman Sachs pumps investment into CyberTech Fortress

CyberTech firm Fortress has secured $125m in investment from Goldman Sachs Asset Management and other investors to help secure critical industry supply chains.

According to Security Week, the company previously raised roughly $40m in several funding rounds between 2015 and 2020.

Fortress provides cyber supply chain risk management solutions for critical infrastructure and critical manufacturing. The company claims it is one of the largest cybersecurity providers of supply chain risk management and asset vulnerability management solutions in the US.

The company claims its solution was developed in collaboration with electric utilities and is now being used to secure 40% of the US’ power grid.

CyberTech company ThreatLocker locks in $100m Series C

Global cybersecurity firm ThreatLocker has raised a $100m Series C funding round, which was led by global growth equity firm General Atlantic.

The investment also received participation from Elephant VC and Arthur Ventures.

This capital burst will help ThreatLocker accelerate its product innovation to bring its zero trust security services to more companies. Additionally, funds will help hire top talent and accelerate its global expansion efforts.

ThreatLocker provides organisations with the ability to protect their IT operations with an effective zero trust approach to cybersecurity. Its product suite provides enterprise-level server and endpoint security by blocking untrusted software, including ransomware, scripts and libraries, and exploits known and unknown application vulnerabilities.

ThreatLocker has experienced a strong year of growth, including quadrupling of its revenue and workforce.

Currently, the company boasts over 23,000 clients and has partnerships with thousands of companies. It works with managed service providers and enterprise clients, including banks, healthcare organisations and airlines.

The CyberTech company previously raised $20m in its Series B funding round, which was led by venture capital firm Elephant VC.

FinTech QuadFi rakes in $100m financing facility

Canadian FinTech firm QuadFi has entered into an agreement for a financing facility of up to $100m with private credit manager Crayhill Capital Management.

QuadFi has developed an underwriting model that considers a customer’s future income and career trajectory. This differs from traditional risk rating models, the firm claims, which normally rely on the historical behaviour and income of customers.

The company added that the model is especially useful for customers with thin credit history but bright prospects such as newcomers and younger demographic groups. QuadFi also offers immigrants the benefit of utilising their home country financial history even after leaving.

According to QuadFi, the facility will be used to provide personal loans to people with limited credit history, but with a strong current income and a bright financial outlook, including young people and immigrants.

SEON snaps up $94m Series B

SEON, an online fraud prevention firm, has secured $94m from a Series B funding round led by IVP.

The round also saw participation from Creandum and PortfoLion. Following this round, SEON has raised a total of $107m.

Founded in 2017, SEON claims it strives to help online businesses reduce the costs, time, and challenges faced due to fraud. The company’s platform leverages machine learning to help organisations detect fraud in real time and accept more transactions.

The company currently has locations in Austin, Texas, Budapest, London, Singapore and Jakarta.

SEON claims it plans to use the new funding to expand its presence in the Americas and APAC regions, build new partnerships and improve the functionality of its platform.

CyberTech platform Obsidian Security nabs $90m

Obsidian Security has closed a Series C funding round on $90m as it looks to accelerate its plans for global expansion.

The round was led by Menlo Ventures and saw participation from Norwest Venture Partners and IVP as well as Greylock, Wing and GV Obsidian. Following this round, the company has raised a total of $119.5m.

Founded in 2017, Obsidian describes itself as the first truly comprehensive security solution for SaaS. The company originally described itself as an identity protection firm but is now offering threat and posture management solutions.

The business’s platform can be integrated with 16 common SaaS applications including Workday, Microsoft 365 and SalesForce.

According to Obsidian, the money will be used to fund the global expansion of its R&D and go-to-market teams.

Investment manager FundGuard scores $40m

FundGuard, an AI-powered investment management and asset servicing platform, has closed its Series B funding round on $40m.

Among the investors were strategic backers Citi and State Street. Support also came from Blumberg Capital, LionBird Ventures, Team8 Capital and others.

With the funds, the company plans to hire more staff and accelerate its growth.

This capital comes after a strong 12 months of growth, including landing asset manager, fund administration and custody bank customers and naming former State Street and BNY Mellon executive John Lehner as its president.

Additionally, it launched its enhanced investment accounting solution, including support for digital assets.

FundGuard has raised a total of $55m in the past three and a half years. It previously raised $12m in its Series A in 2021, which was backed by Team8, Blumberg Capital, LionBird Ventures, Mindset Ventures and Maccabee Ventures.

InsurTech SafetyWing inks $35m Series B

Insurance firm SafetyWing has secured $35m in a Series B funding round led by European growth investor Kinnevik.

Also investing in the Series B were Creandum, DG Ventures, byFounders, Mundi Ventures and CE Fintech.

Founded in 2018, San Francisco-headquartered SafetyWing has a vision to build a ‘global social safety net’ for remote firms, workers and nomads. The company wants to make benefits such as health insurance available for anyone worldwide. It is currently building out its Remote Doctor and Remote Retirement product.

According to SafetyWing, its Remote Health insurance is a fully fledged health insurance product for remote teams and entrepreneurs. The solution, the firm claims, gives global firms a flexible solution in any country they are stationed in.

The funding will aid Safety Wing in scaling its Remote Health offering as the pandemic has sped up the adoption of remote work in firms globally.

DoControl scores $30m Series B

DoControl, a cloud data security startup, has closed a Series B funding round on $30m.

The round was led by Insight Partners and saw participation from Cardumen Capital, CrowdStrike Falcon Fund, StageOne Ventures and RTP Global. Following this raise, DoControl has raised a total of $43m since inception.

Founded in 2020, DoControl provides its users with a SaaS data access control solution that uses automation to identity, respond and deal with threats that emerge from SaaS data policy violations.

According to DoControl, it plans to use the funding to scale its SaaS data security product offerings, fuel global growth through aggressive hiring and build strategic partner programs.

Welcome Tech lands $30m to support immigrant families

Welcome Tech, a digital platform aiming to provide immigrant families in the US with services to help them thrive, has raised $30m in funding.

The injection of capital follows an oversubscribed $35m Series B round in April 2021. This capital was raised exclusively from existing institutional investors including TTV Capital, Owl Ventures, SoftBank Group Corp’s SB Opportunity Fund, Mubadala Capital, and Next Play Capital, bringing Welcome Tech’s total funding to date to $70m.

In 2021, Welcome Tech’s primary consumer platform, SABEResPODER, experienced 60% year-over-year growth, surpassing three million registered users. Welcome’s digital wallet and banking services for the immigrant community saw 2,200% growth and surpassed one million app downloads.

Welcome said the funding will enable further expansion of its product offerings and diverse team, to support the growth of its digital wallet and subscription healthcare programme, and to bolster the launch of its credit card product in the second half of 2022. The company has also expanded it board of directors and executive team with additional hires.

Loop collects $25m for Indian health insurance

Loop, an Indian healthcare and insurance startup has raised $25m in a Series B round co-led by General Catalyst and Elevation Capital.

The round also saw participation from leading Silicon Valley investor, Vinod Khosla and Khosla Ventures, as well as a new investor, Optum Ventures. Existing investor Sierra Ventures also participated.

This round comes just six months after Loop raised a $12m Series A round, bringing the total funds raised till date to $40m.

Founded in 2018 by Mayank Kale, Ryan Singh, Amrit Singh, and Shami Raj, Loop aims to revolutionize the healthcare industry. Currently, the startup provides group health insurance plans from prominent insurers to companies, bundled with instant, unlimited primary care. The company said that uniquely, they are the only insurance broker in the country with an in-house medical team.

Archa pulls in $25m to back small business

Australian FinTech Archa has raised $4m in a funding round and $20m in a debt funding facility to accelerate its growth and product offering.

The funding round saw backing from a list of experienced investors and founders, including CEO and founder of Wisr, Anthony Nantes, Alex Vynokur of Apex Capital and Betashares, Adam Jacobs, co-founder of The Iconic and Hatch, and former Macquarie Capital executives John Prendiville and Link Chairman. The round also included both founders of Netspace, Stuart Marburg and Richard Preen, and a list of high-profile family offices.

On the debt side, Roadnight Capital agreed to a $20m institutional debt funding facility.

Archa is building a corporate card and spend management platform tailored to the needs of small businesses: easy to access, technology-first, and connected to the ecosystem of tools companies already use to run their business.

Archa said its solution has opened the door to business owners who can’t, or don’t want to, access a corporate credit card through their bank, and for high-growth businesses unable to offer corporate cards to their teams.

Money management app for the music industry Stem scores funding

Stem, which is helping musicians improve their financial stability with new tools, has closed a fresh $20m funding round.

The capital injection was backed by QED Investors and Block, which was formerly Square. Existing Stem investors Slow Ventures and Quality Control also joined the round. As part of the investment, QED Investors partner Frank Rotman has joined the Stem board.

With the funds, the company hopes to build a payments platform that is clear and fair for everyone.

Stem was created on the idea that the music industry has wrongly relied on legacy tools that no longer work. Artists work for different partners for different releases, they earn income from new platforms and they need money to invest into producing and marketing their work, it said.

With the changes to the industry, Stem believes that labels need the same innovations and financial tools that support small business growth.

Its platform claims to offer clarity for music businesses, which boasts a simple dashboard for instant visibility into their earnings. Alongside this, it has tools that help divide royalty income in a fair and transparent manner.

In the future the company plans to release products that support the whole music industry.

NovoPayment collects “one of the largest female rounds in the history of Miami”

NovoPayment, a Latino-founded banking-as-a-service provider, has raised $19m in Series A funding.

The round was led by Fuel Venture Capital and IDC Ventures and will be used to further scale NovoPayment’s BaaS platform in existing markets and the US.

NovoPayment offers a full-stack, multi-country, and multi-currency API cloud-based platform that powers digital banking, payment and card solutions. The FinTech said it is strengthening its footprint across the Americas to serve even more financial institutions, FinTechs, neobanks, digital merchants, and acquirers.

Over the past eight years, NovoPayment has expanded to reach 14 markets. In 2021, the company said it saw a 40% increase in client growth, including partnerships with major financial players, such as Visa, Mastercard, and IADB.

Pakistan-based Abhi said to reach $90m valuation

Pakistan-based FinTech company Abhi has reportedly raised $17m in its Series A funding round, which values the company at $90m.

This round was led by Speedinvest, which marks the firm’s first investment into Pakistan, according to a report from Bloomberg. The round was also backed by Global Ventures, VentureSouq, VEF, Sturgeon Capital, Rallycap, FJ Labs, Fatima Gobi, Sarmayacar and i2i Ventures.

Abhi enables users to get access to up to 50% of their earned salary, at any time of the month. Other benefits of the mobile app include access to money whenever, unlimited transactions, one flat rate and it is Shariah compliant.

The FinTech company was previously raised at $40m when it closed a funding round in November 2021. The size of the investment was not revealed.

Since this round, the company has allegedly increased its user base from 200,000 to 650,000 and onboarded more than 150 companies. Individuals are accessing 15% to 20% of their monthly wage via the platform.

Pillar secures funding to improve access to credit

UK-based Pillar has raised €15.6m to tackle credit access problems experiences by immigrants.

According to a report by EU Startups, the round was led by VC firms Global Founders Capital and Backed VC. A number of high profile angels also contributed to the raise, including the founders of WageStream, Peter Briffet and Portman Wills as well as the powerhouse investor and former VP and investor of AirBnB Oliver Jung.

Founded in 2021 by well-known Revolut alumni Ashutosh Bhatt and experienced FinTech CTO, Adam Lewis, Pillar’s technology will provide individuals moving to new countries with access to a variety of credit products in their new locations, that would have previously been unattainable.

With the current structure of the credit referencing market, a consumer cannot take their credit file from one country to another. As such, nearly all immigrants find themselves excluded from everyday products such as credit cards and loans. Those that do manage to access a product find themselves paying a disproportionately higher cost of borrowing.

At the heart of Pillar’s product is a proprietary Open Banking-led data and analytics engine that will power the global scalability of the platform. The launch is planned for Q3 in 2022.

This funding will be used to develop the platform further and build out the operational infrastructure to support the firm’s growth plans

Everstage lands $13m led by Elevation Capital

Everstage, a modern sales commission management platform, has raised $13m in a Series A funding round led by Elevation Capital.

Founded in mid-2020, Everstage said it was created to build a modern culture of trust, transparency and happiness among sales teams by providing real-time visibility of performance and commissions. Sales reps also use Everstage to forecast potential earnings from their deals pipeline, thereby, helping companies drive sales performance and align on rep behaviour.

Everstage said this round follows a successful six months in which the company scaled the business with their revenue growing five-fold while customer numbers have increased six-fold. In August 2021, Everstage raised a $1.7m seed round from 3one4 Capital, who have doubled down on their investment in this round.

The sales commissions management platform said it will use this funding round to expand teams and fully focus on capturing the global market demand for sales performance management.

Zambia-based FinTech Union54 said to raise seed extension

Zambia-based card issuing platform Union54 has reportedly collected $12m in its seed extension round.

The capital injection was led by Tiger Global, with commitments also coming from Earl Grey Capital and Not Boring Capital, according to a report from PYMNTS. This seed round follows an initial $3m in its seed funding.

Union54 was founded to provide a homegrown card issuer to companies across Africa, replacing global firms, such as Mastercard and Visa.
The company provides clients with an API to issue USD virtual and physical cards without needing a third-party processor. These can be issued to customers, employees, stakeholders and more across Africa.

Last year, Mastercard teamed up with Digital PayGo to support digital payments in Zambia. The partnership was aimed at helping SMEs make and receive digital payments more safely.

The SME-in-a-Box service supports digital payments through the use of a mobile app, mobile point-of-sale, a scannable QR code, a USSD code and a virtual and physical card.

PayTech Leatherback lands $10m pre-seed

Leatherback, a UK-based cross-border payments platform, has raised $10m from a pre-seed funding round.

The company attracted funding from several investors including pan-African principal investment firm Zedcrest Capital.

According to FinTech Finance, Leatherback offers a multiple currency solution that enables companies and individuals to conduct global transactions rapidly and efficiently through its digital payments infrastructure while also being committed to promoting business expansion and remove barriers to continental business growth.

The funding will enable Leatherback to focus on critical activities such as hiring strategic roles, elevation in its marketing and branding strategy and traction and visibility in the market.

Themis collects $9m seed financing

Themis, a collaborative governance, risk and compliance platform, has scored $9m in a seed investment.

The round was headed by TTV Capital and also saw participation from Felicis and existing investor Walkabout Ventures.

According to Themis, it is the first platform that enables banks, FinTechs and cryptos t create a strong compliance environment instantly while enabling collaboration so industries are able to create standards together and push innovation forward.

Over the past year, Themis claims to have been developing enterprise-grade software that is already being used by multi-mullion dollar firms. Going forward, the company is focused on hiring key executives and furthering partnerships in the industry and will use this funding to continue this momentum.

Data security for web3 Privy raises $8m in funding

Data security solution Privy has raised $8m in a funding round as it looks to hire more staff and scale its operations.

The seed round was led by Sequoia Capital and BlueYard Capital. Other contributions camed from Electric Capital, Archetype, BoxGroup, Protocol Labs, as well as a long list of angel investors.

Funds from the round will be used to hire more staff, scale its APIs build more partnerships and develop new products for users.

It claims that the lack of user data in web3 has caused poor user experiences, such as the inability to get an email or the need to constantly sign in and out of apps. Privy aims to bring more streamlined operations to web3.

Privy offers APIs to manage user data so it can be safely and easily be integrated into a product. It claims to bridge the gap between users’ on-chain activity and their off-chain data so they can create great experiences with little risk.

SeeMetrics snares $6m in seed funding

Israeli CyberTech SeeMetrics has secured $6m in early-stage seed funding that was led by Work-Bench.

Also participating in the seed funding round were 8VC, AGP, Essence VC, K5 Global and Verissimo.

Founded in 2021, SeeMetrics is an automated cybersecurity performance management platform that integrates security data and business objectives into a simple interface.

The company describes itself as a security portfolio management platform that consolidates all metric data from across the CISO organisation and helps security firms monitor the performance and efficiency of their portfolio.

According to Security Week, the company’s performance management platform is promising a consolidated view into all security systems to quickly identify solution coverage and gaps and maturity analysis for tracking a security program against industry benchmarks and standards.

The company raised the funding to help cyber teams measure, track and simplify security program operations.

InsurTech Insoore scores €5.5m ($5.9m)

Italian InsurTech Insoore has raised €5.5m in a recent funding round to boost video and photograph-based claim management.

According to a report by Tech.eu, the round was led by Proximity Capital, with the participation of Lumen Ventures, Azimut Libera Impresa through Azimut Digitech Fund, GELLIFY, and some angel investors.

Launched by the Rome-headquartered startup Whoosnap, Insoore claims to offer an alternative claims management model. The platform allows insurance and fleet management companies to digitise and accelerate processes while saving time and costs by providing companies with access to a community of users available to make certified video-photographic documentation.

The funding will help the company develop AI projects in damage detection, engage new talent and expand globally.

Ellis lands $5.6m to support international students in the US

Ellis Technologies, which is on a mission to help international students in the US set up a bank account and other services, has raised $5.6m in seed funding.

The round was led by Kindred Ventures. With participation also from Castle Island Ventures, V1.VC, 20VC, Will Smith’s Dreamers VC, and Nextview Ventures.

The funding round also included investments from Balaji Srinivasan, Sahil Bloom, Harry Hurst (Pipe), Joshua Browder (DoNotPay), Matteo Franceschetti (EightSleep), Soups Ranjan (Sardine), Tom Blomfield (Monzo), Alexander Leishman (River Financial), Andrew Benson (River Financial), Cyril Berdugo (Landis), Tom Petit (Landis), Jeremy Cai (Italic), Keith Ryu (Fountain), and others.

Ellis said that immigrants and international students described an “agonising experience” when relocating to the US. “From the moment students clear US customs, we scramble to get a prepaid phone plan, set up a bank account without a social security number, and apply for a social security card – all with little to no guidance,” the company said.

Ellis went on to say that students then spend years dealing with arcane visa processes, learning the nuances of tax treatment of non-residents, navigating poorly designed websites, and maintaining their travel and immigration documents in several disjointed systems – all leading to long hours of stress and, in the worst scenarios, risk of deportation.

To tackle these problems, Ellis asks a simple set of questions, collects basic documents (e.g. Passport, I-20 Form, or DS-2019 Form) and bestows students with a US phone plan, an international checking account, and a debit card – months before their relocation to the US. Ellis said it then uses the same information and documents to create a cohesive immigration profile to automate all of the paperwork and processes required to be an international student. Applying for a social security card, filing non-resident tax returns (that find every possible tax treaty for their nationality), building a credit profile with the bureaus, renewing a visa, and petitioning for work authorization can be done in a few clicks – with Ellis processing all of the paperwork and payments automatically.

Strike Security nets $5.4m in funding to grow in Latin America

Continuous penetration testing service Strike Security has reportedly collected $5.4m in a fresh funding round.

Greyhound Capital served as the lead investor, with contributions also coming through FJ Labs, Canary, NXTP, VentureFriends, Magma Partners, Latitud and Orok Ventures, according to a report from TechCrunch. Other unnamed backers also joined the round.

On the back of the funding, Strike Security plans to expand into the US and Europe. It also hopes to expand its group of ethical hackers and bolster its position in the Latin American market.

The company’s founder Santiago Rosenblatt has been hacking since he was six. By the age of 15 he was helping to defend major businesses in Latin America, such as AstroPay and PedidosYa.

Strike connects people with cybersecurity professionals around the world who will continuously conduct penetration tests to monitor the security of systems.

Companies have real-time reports, which can show what targets are being tested and a list of all vulnerabilities.

Qonto closes fastest fundraise on Crowdcube

French challenger bank Qonto, which reached a $5bn valuation in January, has reportedly closed a crowdfunding campaign in just six hours.

The company, which raised the money through Crowdcube, raised €5m in just six hours and 38 minutes, according to a report from Crowdfund Insider.

On Twitter Qonto said, “As everything happened extremely quickly and we could not exceed the €5 million bar imposed by the regulations in force, some of you were unable to invest. We are sincerely sorry.”

Qonto claimed this is the fastest raised on the Crowdcube platform. It also stated this is the first time a European unicorn has held a crowdfunding campaign.

Qonto is a challenger bank aimed at small and medium-sized businesses (SME) and freelancers. It is a one-stop-shop for banking, financing, spend management and bookkeeping.

The company previously raised $552m in its Series D funding round back in January.

Freelancer savings app Flow nets seed round

Flow Your Money, an app to automate savings, investing and budgeting, has scored €3.5m in seed funding, which was led by Bulgarian venture firm Eleven Ventures.

Following the close of the round, the company plans to scale its platform and expand its operations across Europe.

RockSalt, the venture arm of SaltPay, also joined the seed round, as well as Silverflow co-founder Robert Kraal, Payhawk founder and CEO Hristo Borisov, Travel Health Group owner Arnoud Aalbersberg and others.

Based in Amsterdam, Flow is a money management app for freelancers and the self-employed. It claims that this segment lacks the time and financial overview to efficiently handle their insurance, pension and income tax, as well as reserving money for VAT.

Flow aims to guide people towards their financial goals, such as school expenses, home ownership and holidays. Its app lets users automatically distribute incoming and outgoing money flows.

Armadillo secures seed funding to serve homeownership market

Armadillo, a tech-driven home warranty company, has raised $3.5m in a seed funding round led by Distributed Ventures.

Founded in 2021, Armadillo offers affordable, subscription-based protection for home appliances and systems when they break down.

Armadillio said the convergence of the work from home trend and millennial and Generation Z populations, who historically have not been responsible for maintenance whilst renting, are now increasingly participating in the homeownership market, innovative services related to home maintenance, improvement and repair are in high demand.

RegTech startup alphaMountain.ai scores seed round

alphaMountain.ai scores $2.7m in its seed funding round, which was led by Mercato Partners’ Prelude Fund.

With the funds, the RegTech company plans to bolster its threat intelligence capabilities, including partner integrations with Cisco SecureX, ReversingLabs, Cyware, Maltego and others.

alphaMountain.ai’s investor base includes CrossPoint Capital Partners, Signal Sciences co-founder Andrew Peterson and a group of prominent Utah-based investors.

Founded in 2020, alphaMountain.ai was created to give up-to-date domain and IP intelligence for cybersecurity investigational and protection platforms.

Based in Utah, the company’s technology is based on a continuously trained neural network and actor voting system that combines data from threat feeds and real-time user network telemetry. The platform boasts coverage for around one billion domains and Ips in all geographies and languages, including site malicious risk and web reputation, content classification and cybersquatting detection.

Aura Network nabs $2.5m for its NFT platform

Aura Network, an NFT dedicated layer-1 blockchain based on Cosmos ecosystem, has raised $2.5m in its seed funding round.

The investment was backed by Coin98 Ventures, GBV Capital, Impossible Finance, Kucoin Labs, Kyber Ventures, GUILDFI, Avatar by Avalanche, MEXC Pioneer, TPX Ventures, Redline Dao and OIG. Other notable business partners – Vanda Capital, Deo Network, Ahamove, Ecomobi and Pencil Group.

This capital injection will help the company build a universal framework for NFTs, maximising interoperability and bring its services to global users.

Based in Vietnam, Aura Network aims to accelerate the global adoption on NFTs. Its tools support develops and enables trading.

It plans to release its Testnet at the end of Q2 2022 and its Q3 in 2022.

Koshex said to close $2.1m in seed funding for investing app

India-based FinTech company Koshex has reportedly raised $2.1m in its seed funding round, which was led by Y Combinator.

The funding round was supported by Rally Cap Ventures, Goodwater Capital, Beagle Partners and the Fintech Fund, according to a report from Tech in Asia. Its investors also included several unnamed angel investors from the US and India.

These funds will help develop Koshex to bolster its technology and its distribution channels.

Koshex was founded to enhance the lifestyle of young people by encouraging healthy financial habits.

Its platform enables users to build a portfolio comprised of a range of assets, including technology, clean energy, automobiles, US equity and more. The automated investing platform can also back mutual funds, smart deposits and digital gold.

Users can also split funds across multiple investment strategies, including emergency, long term and short term funds, as well as education plans, home savings and dreams.

Koshex also has a chatbot messenger that lets users easily see how their investments are doing and easily invest into opportunities.

Nigerian InsurTech ETAP pulls in $1.5m

Nigerian InsurTech startup ETAP, which aims to make it easier to buy car insurance and make claims, has raised $1.5m in pre-seed funding.

According to a report by Disrupt Africa, the round was led by Mobility 54, the venture capital arm of Toyota Tsusho and CFAO Group, with participation from Tangerine Insurance, Graph Ventures, Newmont and other angel investors.

The startup uses machine learning to build intelligent risk profiles that determine appropriate premiums for each driver, allowing them to achieve lower premiums by driving safely. Using advanced telematics, the driving experience is gamified to improve driving behaviour and drivers can earn Safe Driving Points that can be exchanged for shopping vouchers for the most in-demand retail outlets, fuel, cinema and concert tickets, and other experiences.

The funding will support the rollout of ETAP’s app, which allows drivers to buy insurance in 90 seconds, complete claims in three minutes or less, and get rewarded for good driving and avoiding accidents. The startup will also explore other opportunities to deliver insurance services for car owners in other countries across the continent.

Since launching in beta in November 2021, ETAP has insured more than 130,000 individual trips and over 500,000 kilometres in car journeys.

Digital identity citadel scores pre-seed funding

Arbor Steel, which claims to be the ultimate digital identity citadel, has raised £200,000 in pre-seed funding, following the launch of its platform to market.

With the capital, the company is looking to build revenues at pace, beginning with professional and financial services firms for personal use of as a member of a charity, board or trust.

Arbor Steel was founded by Edward Goodchild after years of client frustration when sharing personal information to verify their identity, often over insecure, unencrypted emails. Goodchild saw a need for a solution that enables individuals to control how their data is stored and used.

The platform combines identity verification and authentication, secure messaging and data storage in a single platform.

The platform was developed following a £100,000 InnovateUK Grant.

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