Fintech Neat lands $11m to help SMEs trade between Asia-Pacific and Europe
Neat, a Hong Kong-based fintech, has raised $11 million in a Series A round to support businesses which trade across borders.
The funding round was led by Asia-based private investment firm Pacific Century Group (PCG), with participation from Visa and MassMutual Ventures Southeast Asia, the venture capital arm of US-based insurance firm Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual).
Returning investors included Dymon Asia Ventures, Linear Capital and Sagamore Investments.
With a $2.6 billion valuation and $16.5 million total funding now in the bank, Neat will continue to expand internationally with a focus on Southeast Asian customers which do trade with European companies.
Neat says its multi-currency business accounts take just 15 minutes to apply for online, giving users access to corporate expense cards and the ability to send and receive money globally.
Over the next few months, the fintech’s new partnership with Visa will see it issue Visa credit cards to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) which transfer money abroad.
“Our goal is to offer a truly global solution for businesses that trade across borders, regardless of their size or how long they’ve been in the market,” says Neat’s CEO and co-founder David Rosa, who believes many young businesses still struggle to get their hands on corporate credit cards.
“There is a clear demand for better financial products for SMEs, especially when it comes to cross-border payments and trade,” says investor MassMutual Ventures’ MD Ryan Collins.
Neat says it will look at developing “a wide ecosystem of tools” which automate business processes, such as payroll, accounting, and logistics, to further help small international companies.
As for Neat’s physical expansion, the fintech opened an office in Shenzhen last year to tap Chinese exporters, and this year it has opened an office in London to kick off its Western Europe operations.
The fintech says some of the fresh capital will also go towards fleshing out its customer support service, and it also confirms it will “be pursuing relevant regulatory licences around the world”.
Currently, Neat holds a Money Lenders license, a Money Service Operator licence, and a Trust or Company Service Provider (TCSP) licence, all in Hong Kong.