European challenger bank Bunq raises $228 million at $1.9 billion valuation

Amsterdam-based challenger bank Bunq has been self-funded by its founder and CEO Ali Niknam for a number of years. But the corporate has determined to boost some exterior capital, resulting in the biggest Series A spherical for a European fintech firm.

The startup is elevating $228 million (€193 million) in a spherical led by Pollen Street Capital. Bunq founder Ali Niknam can be collaborating within the spherical — he’s investing $29.5 million (€25 million) whereas Pollen Street Capital is financing the remainder of the spherical.

As a part of the deal, Bunq can be buying Capitalflow Group, an Irish lending firm that was beforehand owned by … Pollen Street Capital.

Founded in 2012, Ali Niknam has already invested fairly a bit of cash into his personal firm. He poured $116.6 million (€98.7 million) of his personal capital into Bunq — that doesn’t even take into consideration in the present day’s funding spherical.

But it has paid off as the corporate expects to interrupt even on a month-to-month foundation in 2021. The firm handed €1 billion in person deposits earlier this yr. So why is the corporate elevating exterior funding after turning down VC companies for therefore a few years?

“Everything has a right time. In the beginning of Bunq, it was important to get a laser user focus in the company. Having to also focus on fundraises and the needs of investors distracts. Bunq now is mature enough to start scaling up significantly, so more capital is welcome,” Niknam mentioned.

In specific, the corporate expects to amass smaller firms to gas its progress technique. Challenger banks have additionally represented a extremely aggressive market over the previous years in Europe. It’s clear that there might be some consolidation at some level.

Bunq affords bank accounts and debit playing cards that you could management from a cell app. It works notably effectively in case your family and friends are additionally utilizing Bunq as you may immediately ship cash, share a cost hyperlink with different individuals, break up funds and extra.

In specific, when you’re occurring a weekend journey, you can begin an exercise with your pals. It creates a shared pot that allows you to share bills with everybody. If you reside with roommates, you may as well create subaccounts to pay for payments from that account.

The firm affords totally different plans that vary from €2.99 per thirty days to €17.99 per thirty days — there’s additionally a free journey card with a restricted function set. By selecting a subscription-based enterprise mannequin, the startup has a transparent path to profitability as most customers are paid customers.

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