ICYMI fintech funding round-up: Archie, Dapio, Finary, Jia Finance, & Zimpler
At FinTech Futures, we know that it can be easy to let funding announcements slip you by in this fast-paced industry. That’s why we put together our weekly In Case You Missed It (ICYMI) funding round-up for you to get the latest funding news.
Archie, a New York-based start-up that is building the financial infrastructure for the freelance economy, has raised $4.5 million in funding and fully opened for business.
Archie’s first product is to help businesses onboard, manage, and pay independent workers.
The funding came from B Capital Group, Mac Ventures, Worklife Ventures, Hof VC, Dash Fund, Day One Ventures, Scott Belsky (founder of Behance) and the founders of Cameo, Blank Street, Ramp, BloomTech (formerly Lambda School), Eight Sleep, and more.
The fintech estimates there are 67 million freelancers in the US, and by 2027, 86.5 million people will be freelancing, making up 51% of the total US workforce. By 2028, the number will surpass 90 million to represent the workforce’s majority.
Nearly half of US businesses use freelancers.
“People want to join the freelance economy but are scared of all the financial obstacles,” says Yunas Reguero, co-founder of Archie.
“At the same time, businesses are increasingly relying on freelancers but the tools to tap into this economy are stuck in the past. We’re building the onramp for both sides to unlock the magic of the freelance world.”
Dapio (formerly Paymob), a cashless payment solutions provider for businesses, has raised $3.4 million in growth funding to launch its “Tap to Pay” solution for Android users in the UK and Europe.
The funding was led by Flutterwave alongside Techstars, PactVC, and Daniel Gould, venture partner at Asymmetry Ventures.
Dapio says that Apple’s upcoming Tap to Pay feature for iPhones excludes the millions of Android users, who make up 42% of the US mobile market, 46% in the UK and 71% globally.
The start-up’s technology transforms any Android smartphone into a payment terminal able to accept contactless payments.
Dapio will be launching its first direct-to-customer Android app this spring. It also partners with point of sale (POS) vendors, banks, telcos, fintechs, and payment platforms that integrate its tech to offer their merchant customers Tap to Pay facilities.
The paytech was founded in London in 2019 by Kosta Du and Grigory Gurbanov.
France-based wealthtech Finary has raised €2.1 million on crowdfunding platform Crowdcube. The community funding, raised in just 21 minutes, added to its recent round of €8 million, co-led by Speedinvest and Y Combinator. Other investors included Bitpanda’s Eric Demuth and Qonto’s Steve Anavi and Alexandre Prot.
Last year, the start-up clinched €2.2 million in a seed round.
Finary was founded in late 2020 by Mounir Laggoune (CEO) and Julien Blancher (CTO) and is based in Paris.
It provides real-time portfolio tracking for investors. “We are an independent start-up that is building your personal finance OS,” it says on its website.
Jia Finance, a US-based online residential mortgage platform for foreign investors, has raised $5 million in a seed funding round.
The funding round was led by venture capital investor TTV Capital, with participation from Stanford Angels, a co-founder of SoFi, and the founder of UK investment app Nutmeg (now owned by JP Morgan).
The start-up uses data analysis technology, artificial intelligence (AI), and identity verification to make underwriting decisions and fund mortgages for international investors.
It claims to cut the entire real estate transaction period from a typical 90 days down to 30, replacing the traditional low-tech, offline, and cumbersome application process.
According to data from the National Association of Realtors, foreign investors in the US residential real estate market make up 2.8% of the $1.96 trillion spent on existing homes from April 2020 to March 2021.
Investors from the Asia-Pacific region represented 22% of all foreign buyers during that same period. Investors from Latin America represent 19% and Europe 11%.
Co-founder and CEO Sufian Creui says the start-up’s “broader mission is to use technology to help cross-border real estate investors access opportunities globally”.
“Traditional banks have been disinterested in helping international borrowers and have failed to tailor products to this segment of the mortgage market,” Creui adds.
Jia Finance is headquartered in Washington, DC, where it oversees its mortgage operations. Software and business development teams operate out of Hong Kong and Shanghai.
Zimpler, a Swedish paytech, has raised new equity funding from Nordstjernan Growth. Nordstjernan joins Zimpler’s previous investors, which include Inbox Capital and CNI, and becomes a minority owner.
Zimpler offers instant account-to-account (A2A) payment solutions used by merchants within various segments like travel, e-commerce, and the creator economy. Earlier this year, it also launched a new business-to-business (B2B) A2A solution.
The Stockholm-based paytech, which recently celebrated its tenth anniversary, had its best performing year ever in 2021, with transaction volumes growing by 176%.
Zimpler also significantly expanded geographically. Its products are now live in seven countries: Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, and the Netherlands.
Its employee count increased by almost 200%.
“We believe that A2A payments are the future, and we can already see more and more sectors appreciating their value and adapting to them,” says CEO Johan Strand.