Modest bounce-back week for FinTech deals


This week saw a modest bounce-back from the sector with a total of 25 deals closed across the industry, led by five high-value deals.

Following last week’s meagre 17 deals, this week saw a slightly stronger 25 deals closed, raising a total of $890m, up from last week’s $616.

The top ten deals alone raised $835m, indicating that the rest of the 15 deals raised were much smaller. Of these, the top five secured the lions’ share, raising $724m between them.

US dominated the top ten deals, accounting for six of the biggest deals. Taking a closer look, a range of sectors were represented in the US-based companies, including the RegTech, WealthTech and InsurTech sectors.

Research from FinTech Global recently reported that deal appetite held strong in the first quarter of the year. FinTech globally saw a busy start to the year with 2,432 investors participating in funding rounds during the first quarter of 2023.

FinTech companies raised a combined $22bn in Q1 2023 over 1,366 FinTech deals. The US was the most active FinTech country in Q1 with 566 deals, a 41% share of the total deals during the quarter. The UK was the second most active with an 8% share of deals.

The deals this week saw a limited representation from European nations. In the top ten there were just two companies. Lithuania-based SME Finance, which secured $110m and UK-based RegTech firm VoxSmart which closed a $12m raise.

FinTech Global Research recently revealed that European FinTech seed funding and deal activity levels significantly dropped in Q1 2023 from the same period last year. FinTech deal activity in Europe during the first three months of the year reached 173 deals, a 49% drop from Q1 2022.

FinTech Investment saw a less dramatic drop in Q1 2023 reaching $348m during the quarter, a 39% drop YoY. Seed deal activity in the region dropped at the same level as all FinTech deals in Europe but investment in all European FinTech deals dropped by 70% in Q1 2023, 30 percentage points more than seed deals.

Here are the 25 deals which took place this week.

Clear Street closes second tranche of $435m 

New York-based independent prime broker Clear Street has been valued at $2bn following the close of a $270m investment from growth equity firm Prysm Capital.

This fresh capital is the second tranche of a $435m Series B funding round. In addition to Prysm Capital, the Series B has received backings from a diverse institutional investor base, including public pension funds and endowments.

The funds have been earmarked to expand Clear Street’s reach across new markets and asset classes.

Other projects include bolstering its product offerings, increasing the availability to all market participants and offering solutions to clients looking to migrate to a single-source platform.

The initial tranche of the Series B round was a $165m investment in May 2022. This capital injection, which valued Clear Street at $1.7bn, marked its first venture capital fundraise since its inception.

Backers of that first close included NextGen Venture Partners, IMC Investments, Walleye Capital, Belvedere, NEAR Foundation, McLaren Strategic Ventures, and Validus Growth Investors.

Last year, Clear Street expanded its sales and engineering teams, launched capital introduction and repo businesses, bolstered its securities lending capabilities and updated its client-facing position, risk, operations, and reporting portals.

Digital identity network raises $132m and names new CFO

Secure digital identity network has raised $132m in its Series D funding round and appointed Samantha Greenberg as its new chief financial officer.

The Series D capital injection was led by Viking Global Investors, an American-based hedge fund. Other commitments came from CapitalG, Morgan Stanley Counterpoint, FTV Capital, PSP Growth, Auctus Investment Group, Moonshots Capital, and Scout Ventures.

Taking up the role of CFO, Greenberg has over 20 years of experience leading financial operations, analysing private and public technology and consumer companies and scaling high-growth businesses.

Commenting on the appointment of Greenberg, co-founder and CEO Blake Hall said, “We are fortunate to have Samantha join our senior leadership team, given her excellent track record in growing companies to serve their customers and business partners.

“Her expertise will support our mission to provide our more than 100 million members with a safe and secure digital identity credential facilitating access across services, benefits, healthcare and commerce without selling their personal data. Samantha is joining our team at the right time, after we closed our Series D funding and surpassed 100 million members. These are big milestones toward our vision to streamline access to benefits and services while ensuring no identity is left behind.”

Altruist collects $112m to enhance its platform for RIA

Altruist, a custodian built exclusively for registered investment advisors (RIAs), has secured $112m in its Series D funding round.

Insight Partners, a New York-based private equity and venture capital firm, served as the lead investor. Also joining the round was first-time backer Adams Street Partners. Other notable backers include Bill McNabb, Ron Carson and Marty Bicknell.

With the capital, Altruist plans to expand its service offerings and support a wider range of RIAs, including mid-sized firms that manage between $100m and $1bn in total assets.

The WealthTech company claims that its vertically integrated approach makes it the first company to combine clearing, custody and a complete suite of advisory software into a single solution.

Founded in 2018, Altruist offers an all-in-one software stack that offers account opening, trading, reporting, and billing.

Insight Partners managing director Jon Rosenbaum said, “Altruist has quietly invested an immense amount of time and resources building a truly modern custodian for RIAs.

PhonePe nets yet another $100m as billion-dollar funding plan continues

PhonePe, an Indian payments application, has netted yet another $100m in funding as it continues its path to raising $1bn in funding.

The funding was provided by General Atlantic and its co-investors. Following this recent tranche, PhonePe has now raised a total of $750m.

According to FinTech Futures, PhonePe claims its plans on entering and scaling new businesses such as insurance, wealth management, lending, stockbroking, shopping and account aggregators with the new funding.

The company has raised a considerable amount over the last few months. Back in January, PhonePe entered the Deacorn club following the closing of a $350m funding round, which doubled its valuation to $12bn.

In Feburary, PhonePe raised another $100m in primary capital as the company continued its funding spree. The funding was raised by Ribbit Capital, TVS Capital Funds and Tiger Global.

Lithuania-based SME Finance receives €100m credit facility

Lithuania-based SME Finance, a lender to small businesses, has reportedly secured €100m in a credit facility from Fasanara Capital.

This fresh equity will enable SME Finance to create an EU-wide FinTech marketplace for traditional business loans, as well as new models of lending, such as revenue-based financing and embedded finance, according to a report from AltFi.

SME Finance is a business lender that offers tailored financing solutions that take into account the specific features of the client’s activities. To offer a loan, SME Finance just needs a few documents, such as financial reports and data from the buyers.

Since it was founded in 2016, SME Finance has deployed more than €1.3bn in loans and invoice financing. It currently operates across Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Finland.

Regions Bank backs insurance solutions provider Orion180

Orion180, a provider of insurance solutions, has closed an inaugural $42.5m senior secured credit facility led by Regions Bank.

Founded in 2016, Orion180 is on a mission to enhance the way agents and consumers purchased and manage insurance.

The fast-growing insurance solutions provider offers a combination of proprietary technology and customer-centric human interactions, simplifying the insurance buying process.

The senior secured credit facility will add to the capital base of both of Orion180’s carriers: Orion180 Insurance Co., an excess-and-surplus lines insurance carrier that underwrites non-admitted homeowners insurance in the Southeast, and Orion180 Select Insurance, formed to provide insurance solutions on an admitted basis throughout the Southeast and Midwest.

Orion180 Insurance, formed in 2022, had $20m of equity capital prior to the new capital investment.

Global retail brokerage firm Tradier scores Series B funding

Global retail brokerage firm Tradier has secured $24.6m in its Series B funding round, which was led by PEAK6 Strategic Capital.

Existing Tradier backers F-Prime Capital and KF Business Ventures also joined the round.

With this capital, the WealthTech company hopes to accelerate its growth by providing traders and partners with advanced features, live content and custom services.

Over the course of the year, Tradier plans to expand its product offering with a market-first platform and content hub, portfolio margin, an expanded API offering, global debit funding, futures and crypto to service this growing market segment.

Tradier had a strong 2022, with traders who signed up for the platform’s subscription plans averaging an account size of $30,000 and executing an average of 150 trades each month. Additionally, Tradier’s equity share and option contract volumes have increased 100% year-over-year.

Australian firm Fivecast secures $20m in Series A

Fivecast, an open-source intelligence software firm, has closed its Series A funding round and has raised $20m.

The round was led by Ten Eleven and saw participation from existing backers such as the Australian Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation’s Main Sequency and the South Australian Venture Capital Fund.

Fivecast provides OSINT technology powered by AI and ML to aid defense, intelligence, police, border security and corporations in keeping society safer. The software enables the targeted collection and risk analysis of publicly available information for specific use cases, such as identifying extremists, terrorists, drug trafficking and organized crime.

The company is using the new funding to build out its product portfolio and drive growth in the Five Eyes community following strong momentum in Australia, a surge in demand in the US and the establishment of its UK office.

Fivecast is also targeting the Asia Pacific region and Europe, and is adding further capabilities in adjacent use cases such as corporate security and financial intelligence.

The company is also continuing recruitment of industry professionals, including tradecraft experts, developers, and sales and marketing personnel to its four offices, having recently achieved a milestone of more than 100 employees globally.

Forme Financial launches out of Beta as Earned for wealth management for physicians

Forme Financial, a comprehensive wealth system for physicians has launched out of Beta as Earned and raised $12m in Series A funding.

The fundraise was led by Hudson Structured Capital Management and Breyer Capital, with meaningful participation from founding partner Juxtapose. This latest round brings Earned’s total funding to $18m since it started serving customers in 2022.

Earned, formerly Forme Financial, is the first comprehensive, tech-enabled wealth system exclusively for physicians.

The company uses a physician’s unique career journey, from residency to buying into private practice to retirement, as a lens for the company’s data-driven recommendations.

With this new round of funding, Earned said it plans to expand its services to become a “one-stop shop for physicians”, providing access to high-fidelity investments, tax prep, filing, insurance optimisation, debt management, lending solutions, and career advisory.

Earned’s proprietary wealth engine will be personalised to the individual physician’s goals and situation, connecting the dots across all aspects of wealth and optimising against known client outcomes.

According to Earned, for most physicians, wealth management has been a fragmented and complicated experience where every step of the process is siloed, from debt management to investments and tax planning. Earned’s centralised, tech-forward approach maximises physicians’ wealth cohesively and seamlessly, helping physicians earn more, invest smarter, and reduce risk.

Communications surveillance firm VoxSmart secures $12m

VoxSmart, a leader in communications surveillance and financial AI solutions, has raised a further $12m in a recent funding round.

The latest funding comes from existing investors such as UK-based Tosca Fund, as well as some of its existing US investors.

VoxSmart supplies firms with voice and electronic communications analytics and remote compliance solutions that enable them to supervise communication through a range of voice and digital platforms.

According to Financial IT, even in a time of economic uncertainty, investors are confident in VoxSmart’s technology specifically in the areas of regulatory compliance for multiple communications and their innovation in the areas of Natural Language Processing (NLP), AI and ML.

Pricing platform Pricemoov lands $10m in Series A

Pricemoov, a cloud firm that powers intelligent pricing decisions, has raised $10m in a Series A funding round headed by ISAI and Bpifrance Digital Venture.

The challenges surrounding pricing are constantly increasing as businesses navigate inflation, supply chain disruptions, and cost volatility. This is further complicated by the omnichannel imperative, competitive pressures, and rapidly changing customer expectations.

Pricemoov claims it absorbs all this complexity in order to help companies make better pricing decisions and remain profitable.

The company will use the financing to grow its team, significantly invest in product development, and expand its presence internationally.

Pricemoov will also open a number of new positions and strengthen its international presence to support customers with a global footprint.

PropTech company VERO raises $9m in its Series B

PropTech company VERO, which stylises itself as a modern leasing platform for owners and renters, has secured $9m in a Series B led by Fifth Wall.

The capital will enable VERO to deepen its technology stack and optimise the owner and renter experience. It will also help VERO add new capabilities, bolster its platform and hire more staff.

VERO claims to be the first and only tech solution in the industry to automate the verification of an applicant’s previous residency and qualifications. The centralised solution provides clients with streamlined workflows, mitigated risk and increased net asset value.

Its platform also helps to eliminate application fraud and protects rental income by using advanced data sets and verifications.

Since its inception in 2018, VERO has increased transaction volume by 500% annually and grown its revenue by 130% quarter-over-quarter.

Crypto financial risk management solutions dev Gauntlet gets grant

Gauntlet, a crypto-native financial risk management solutions provider, has launched a new research division and received a grant from the Uniswap Foundation.

The new division, Gauntlet Applied Research, aims to address the most pressing challenges within the crypto space by offering protocols custom quantitative analysis, modelling, and optimisation, enhancing its existing capabilities within risk management decentralised finance.

For its first initiative, it has secured a grant from the Uniswap Foundation to review and recommend incentive program optimisations for the Uniswap Protocol.

Uniswap funds and supports work that looks to further the development and growth of the DeFi ecosystem. The Uniswap Protocol is a decentralised cryptocurrency exchange that leverages smart contracts to execute trades.

With over 4,000 decentralised autonomous organisations (DAOs) in existence, Gauntlet claims the demand for organising community members around one central mission has increased. Gauntlet Applied Research was created to pair the company’s modelling and simulation platform with a dedicated research team to address challenges related to how DAOs operate and grow.

Xclaim raises $7m for crypto trading platform for assets locked by bankruptcy

Xclaim, which claims to be the only independent trading platform for crypto assets locked by bankruptcy, has reportedly raised $7m in its Series A.

The investment was led by venture capitalist Josh Jones, according to a report from FinSMEs.

With this burst of equity, the company hopes to accelerate the adoption of bankruptcy claims electronically, which it will achieve through new financial products that boost market liquidity and accessibility.

Xclaim serves as an exchange for bankruptcy claims against crypto companies. It publishes real-time market value of claims and offers quick recoveries.

A user provides basic information that can be shared with other traders interested in buying the claim out of bankruptcy. The user can then compare multiple offers from a network of buyers. When they find the best offer, Xclaim will support the deal process and will handle all the paperwork.

External threat landscape management firm Cyfirma lands $5.5m

Cyfirma, an external threat landscape management company, has raised a pre-Series B round of funding valued at $5.5m.

The funding was provided by OurCrowd, an Israeli venture fund, as well as India’s multinational conglomerate L&T Innovation Fund. With the closing of this round, CYFIRMA has raised nearly USD18M to date.

To deter the ever-increasing sophisticated cyberattacks, businesses must gain deep insights into the environment to understand their unique external threat landscape better.

By combining cyber intelligence with attack surface discovery and digital risk protection, Cyfirma cloud-native, non-intrusive SaaS platform gives customers predictive, personalized, contextual, outside-in, and multi-layered insights in a single pane of glass.

The capital raised will be used for product innovation and entering new global markets in North America, Europe and MENA region in addition to growing the existing markets in SEA, including India, Singapore and Japan. The funds will also be utilised for hiring across verticals and in-brand building.

Marketplace lending company Prestatech raises €4m in funding

Prestatech, which offers data collection, risk assessment and integrated finance solutions, has raised €4m in funding.

The investment was led by CDP Venture Capital Sgr, with participation coming from Alchimia Spa and Vantage 20 SA.

This capital injection will help Prestatech bolster its operations in Italy and bolster its presence in the local banking market. It will also leverage the funds to build new integrated finance products.

Prestatech aims to help financial institutions and trading platforms make better decisions through reliable alternative data. Its technology automates data gathering, lending processes and embedded finance solutions with digital products based on alternative financial data.

The platform boasts full credit and behavioural analysis based on transactional data that can be enriched with traditional data points such as credit bureaus and databases.

FinTech for contractors Pro Platforms exits stealth with $4.7m

Construction and finance technology startup Pro Platforms has exited stealth mode following the close of a $4.7m funding round.

Social Leverage and Aperture VC served as the lead investors, with contributions also coming from GS Futures, Hustle Fund and others.

Funds from the round will enable Pro Platforms to launch tools for treasury management and payment processing later in the year.

Pro Platforms claims that under 10% of around 3.7 million contractors in the US use CRM software and less than 10% of home improvement projects are financed through dealer-arranged financing, with over $350bn of projects in 2022 paid for with cash.

Its flagship product is the Construct CRM platform for contractors, which it claims to be the first all-in-one, one-size-fits-all home improvement contractor operating system. The tool helps with customer acquisition, sales, customer and project management, field management, scheduling, dispatch accounting, invoicing, billing, collections and more.

This solution has already supported over $1m in home improvement project volume per week and expects to support over $100m in home improvement projects by the end of 2023.

Pro Platforms claims the automation features of Construct CRM allow contractors to eliminate 20% of their manual process time. The product also offers customers specialty home improvement financing throughout their project journey without the contractors having to do additional work.

Universal API for insurance developer Axle nabs $4m

Axle, which aims to bridge the gap in insurance through a universal API for insurance data, has secured $4m in a fresh funding round.

The investment was led by Google’s AI-focused venture capital fund Gradient Ventures. Other commitments came from Soma Capital, Contrary Capital, Rebel Fund, BLH Ventures, as well as angel investors including members of the founding team of Plaid and former executives from Cox Automotive.

This capital injection will enable Axle to hire more staff to meet new and existing demands for its services. The InsurTech is also looking to expand into new markets.

Axle stated that the reliance of legacy systems within insurance, as well as paper-based processes and lengthy phone calls with third parties, has left high-risk organisations, such as rental car companies, lenders and gig services, struggling to accurately assess risk and make informed decisions at scale.

To fix this, Axle has designed a universal API for insurance data that enables clients to make decisions within seconds. Its platform allows users to connect their insurance account to trusted companies within seconds.

Within the first year of its launch, Axle has grown its carrier network to hundreds of insurance carriers.

Governance SaaS platform Kuberno scores £3.5m

Kuberno, a global legal entity SaaS provider for corporate secretaries, legal teams, and governance professionals, has raised £3.5m for its Series A.

Nasdaq Ventures, which is a global venture capital firm aimed at technology developments within finance, supplied the Series A capital.

These funds will help Kuberno accelerate its international growth and expand into new markets.

As part of the deal, Kuberno launched a commercial partnership with Nasdaq Governance Solutions that includes a planned product integration into Nasdaq’s suite of governance solutions. It hopes this will bolster efficiency for corporate secretary teams as that handle increased regulatory parameters.

The duo believes the partnership will create opportunities for both companies to better serve clients and integrate their solutions to bring efficiency to governance operations.

Kuberno simplifies the management of legal entity governance by streamlining reporting and enabling remote collaboration through its cloud-native product, Kube.

CLM developer SimpliContract closes pre-Series A on $3.5m

Contract lifecycle management (CLM) SaaS platform SimpliContract has closed its pre-Series A round on $3.5m, as it looks to expand in the US and Europe.

The investment was led by Emergent Ventures, with contributions also coming from Kalaari Capital, Picus Capital, Foster Ventures, Leslie Ventures and Sentinel Ventures.

SimpliContract will use the funds to bolster its growth in the US and European markets, with a focus on investing in sales and marketing.

Founded in 2020, supports companies with contract authoring, contract repository, contract management, analytics and insights, enterprise integrations and data extraction.

Its platform is powered by NLP-enabled AI technology and helps legal, sales, finance and procurement teams. Its clients include Bass Pro Shops, ATI Physical Therapy, NHS, Kent Police, Cyient, Flipkart Group and Byju’s.

The company claims to reduce contracting time by up to 40% and help businesses to save millions of dollars.

Saudi Arabia-based group savings FinTech Hakbah nets $2m

Hakbah, a Saudi Arabia-based FinTech savings platform, has secured $2m in its pre-Series A funding round, as it looks to bolster its presence in the country.

UAE-based venture capital firms Global Ventures and Aditum Investment Management participated in the funding round, which marks Hakbah’s first institutional capital.

With the fresh capital, Hakbah hopes to deepen its presence in Saudi Arabia, improve the user journey and enhance its savings engine algorithm.

Hakbah claims to be one of the fastest growing companies in the region. It experienced an organic growth rate of over 20-times in 2022 and helped a total of 18,000 customers save over $35m.

The FinTech company is tackling the Middle East savings crisis. In Saudi Arabia, 70% of people do not have emergency savings and the household savings rate averages at 1.6%, according to Hakbah.

To help address the problem, Hakbah offers social savings to bolster financial inclusion. It claims to be the first cooperative saving platform in Saudi Arabia and has 120,000 active users on the platform.

Regenerative forests investment platform Xilva nets $1.8m

Xilva, a platform for investments in regenerative forests, has recently raised $1.8m in a pre-seed funding round.

The round saw participation from Brainforest,, Bloomsbury Natural Capital and a group of angel investors.

Founded in 2021, Xilva uses a methodology to assess forest projects and thus reduce potential risks related to investing in carbon credits and nature restoration initiatives. It conducts the due diligence process through its Xilva GRADE platform and provides certified carbon credits for companies as well as investment opportunities for their future needs.

Xilva claims its goal is to combat climate change while protecting biodiversity, benefiting local communities and enabling the full range of ecosystem services provided by forests.

The recently raised funds will be used to further develop technological solutions and scale marketing and operations.

FinTech SaaS provider Fivvy gets backing of Globant Ventures

SaaS financial industry platform Fivvy has received support from Globant Ventures, which includes a planned $4m investment over a two-year period.

The financial backing will help Fivvy bolster its market position in the Americas, as well as enhance its services. In addition to monetary support, the partnership will provide the FinTech company with expertise in leveraging new and emerging technologies.

Fivvy was built to help traditional and digital banking institutions offer personalised experiences to customers and apply unique data models to increase revenue. It claims to leapfrog its clients ahead of the competition through cutting-edge, data-driven models and tailored customer engagement strategies.

Through a streamlined implementation process, banks can become data driven and customer centric within three months.

Its features and services include secure transaction processing, automated analytics, real-time banking insights and in-depth financial planning. Through its technology, clients can offer their customers a 360-degree view of their finances and support their decision making.

IAG Firemark Ventures backs InsurTech Planck

IAG Firemark Ventures has invested in Planck, a global InsurTech platform that provides real-time answers to underwriting questions to the global Commercial Insurance Industry.

The investment, according to Planck is aimed at supporting the company’s global expansion into the Australian and New Zealand commercial insurance market, with a vision that the technology could potentially be embedded in IAG’s brands, CGU and NRMA.

Planck’s technology utilizes artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms to provide insurers with real-time risk insights that superpower underwriter’s efficiency and facilitate automation.

The platform is designed to help insurance companies streamline their underwriting processes, reduce manual errors, and improve efficiency. By working with carriers in automating the underwriting process, Planck said it enables them to make better-informed decisions, reduce underwriting friction and grow premiums whilst reducing loss ratios.

Last year, Planck raised $23m in funding. The round was headed by Vintage Investment Partners and saw participation from Arbor Ventures, Arbor Ventures, Team8, 3L Capital, HDI and Nationwide. Several private angel investors also took part.

Real estate finance software developer Built Technologies gets Citi backing

Built Technologies, a provider of construction and real estate finance technology, has received strategic funding from Citi.

The capital came from Citi SPRINT, a division of Citi that is focused on incubating FinTech companies that offer strategic relevance and next-generation solutions for the financial markets.

With the funds, Built Technologies hopes to accelerate its growth within commercial real estate asset management, as well as make operational and technological enhancements. Through Built Technologies’ platform, Citi will have the ability to introduce digitisation solutions to other lenders, developers and borrowers in the ecosystem.

Built Technologies offers a software platform that streamlines the construction loan administration process by simplifying the management of funds and documentation, allowing lenders to administer their construction loans more efficiently. Its technology enables faster funding decisions and draws, as well as providing real-time visibility into the status of construction projects.

Over 250 banks and private capital providers leverage Built Technologies’ cloud-based solution to create a centralised system of record and accelerate the flow of capital from lenders to borrowers, contractors and vendors.

Keep up with all the latest FinTech news here.

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