ICYMI fintech funding round-up: Jodo, ZSuite Tech, Penfold, Appital & RiskSmart
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 fintech funding news.
Indian fintech start-up Jodo has secured $15 million in a Series A funding round led by Tiger Global Management and with participation from existing investors Matrix Partners India and Elevation Capital.
With the new funds, Jodo intends to build new financial products, accelerate sales and hire new talent.
Founded in 2020, Jodo provides education payment solutions by offering students and parents flexible fee payment options and simplifying fee collection for educational institutions.
In the last two years, it claims to have worked with over 100,000 students and parents and more than 700 institutes in over 50 cities across India.
US-based fintech company ZSuite Technologies has raised $11 million in a Series A round led by S3 Ventures with participation from multiple private banks and JAM FINTOP.
ZSuite Tech plans to use the new cash to scale its platform, expand into new markets and boost its product development.
Founded in 2019, ZSuite Tech offers software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions that enable financial institutions to increase core deposits, improve customer experience and reduce internal costs with digital efficiencies.
Specifically, it provides financial firms with unbound digital accounts encompassing escrow, sub-accounting, sub-ledgering, FBO and trust accounts for commercial customers.
“Managing commercial escrow and sub-accounting is a very complex, manual process that has pained bankers and their customers for years,” says Charlie Plauche, general partner with S3 Ventures.
ZSuite Tech has partnered with more than 36 institutions across the US and claims to support approximately 41,000 escrow accounts, managing more than $140 million in annual payments and $300 million in annual deposits on the platform.
Digital pensions platform Penfold has closed a £7 million Series A funding round led by existing investor Bridford Group.
Penfold also opened the round to its customer base and wider community with a crowdfund which it says reached 190% of its goal from over 900 contributors.
The funds will be used to expand the pension provider’s workplace pension division, which has signed up more than 150 businesses since its launch 10 months ago.
Chris Eastwood, co-founder of Penfold, says: “This funding will have a huge impact on our ability to bring our pension to more people, especially as we look to expand our workplace pension offering and give savers more control over their pension.”
Founded in 2018 and based in the UK, Penfold claims to offer “accessible, engaging and high-performing” pensions and is available for businesses as an auto-enrolment scheme and for private savers, the self-employed and company directors.
It has since raised a total investment of £8.5 million from a combination of angel investors and venture capital firms and claims to have over 60,000 users.
Equity capital marketplace Appital has secured an additional £1.7 million investment from Frontline Ventures and various angel investors.
The investment follows last year’s £2.5 million funding round led by Frontline Ventures and takes the firm’s total capital raised to date to £4.85 million.
The Appital platform enables the buyside community to originate and participate in liquidity discovery, price formation and execution opportunities in publicly listed equities.
Appital says that it allows institutional investors to have “full transparency and maximum control” over the book-building and deal distribution process, and can actively drive liquidity in the marketplace.
Mark Badyra, CEO of Appital, says: “In the run-up to our launch we have forged partnerships and built technology infrastructure to support a new buyside workflow, giving firms control over their book-building processes and bringing a highly manual activity into an automated, algorithmically driven platform.”
The firm adds that over 30 asset managers, collectively managing more than $30 trillion, have joined or are in the process of joining Appital.
Risk management platform RiskSmart has launched in the UK market having secured over £1 million in funding from NPIF Maven Equity Finance and other institutional investors.
The start-up aims to simplify risk for small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) that it says have been underserved by complex and expensive platforms, frameworks and manual processes in the industry.
By making use of data and AI technology, RiskSmart offers automated and centralised risk management that “increases confidence and business resilience”.
RiskSmart says it has plans for significant growth by the end of 2024 and to secure Gartner recognition within the same time frame.