More than $30 million in venture capital stuck around the U.K., the U.S. and Canada, mostly focusing on Series A investments. The U.K., though, is a particularly bright star this week, as more than 60 percent of that funding went to London startups. Preparations for corporate banking disruption and PSD2 are stirring the innovation pot, it seems. We break down all the B2B FinTech funding rounds below.
With solutions in the HR space, EaseCentral provides companies with software as a service (SaaS) that faces both insurance brokers and employees in the enterprise. This week the company announced two new solutions as well as $6.5 million in Series A investment funding led by Propel Venture Partners; Freestyle Capital, Compound, Upside Partnership and Transmedia Capital also participated. EaseCentral's new tools include an employee-facing mobile app, as well as an integration with ADP for streamlined payroll. With a focus on small businesses, EaseCentral said it already has 30,000 clients under its belt. The new funding will help the company expand geographically in the U.S., with plans to open an office in New York City later this year. EaseCentral said it also plans to expand staff and focus on product development.
The U.K.'s AimBrain deploys biometric authentication technology to combat fraud for FinTechs and financial institutions. With more than $5 million in new funding, the company will be able to reach more customers with its services, which include customer verification via voice and even analysis of how a customer interacts with a device. The Series A investment funding was led by BGF Ventures, reports said, while Episode 1, Entrepreneur First (EF) and angel investors also participated. Reports said the key differentiator for AimBrain in the market is its ability to provide plug-and-play solutions so banks and FinTechs can deploy its services all at once or singularly; it also enables a business to enhance its biometric authentication measures should any red flags arise.
Also based in the U.K. is TrueLayer, which provides a developer platform for FinTechs to streamline access to bank APIs that are PSD2 compliant. Reports this week said the company raised $3 million in Series A investment funding led by Anthemis Group, while Connect Ventures also participated. TrueLayer said it will use the funds to add to its team to add more banks' APIs to its platform. TrueLayer remains in beta phase but will open its solution to more testers later this year, reports said. In an interview with TechCrunch, TrueLayer cofounder Francesco Simoneschi said the company believes "PSD2 will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for startups to displace incumbent banks and financial service providers." Easing developers' access to bank APIs is critical to that disruption, he added.
While Soldo first began as a personal finance solution, specifically a tool to help parents give money to their children and manage their spend, Soldo has increasingly turned towards the corporate banking and spend management space. The U.K. company attracted $11 million in new funding this week led by Accel. The Series A investment was announced alongside the news that Accel's Sonali de Rycher will also join the company's board, and the funding will help Soldo expand beyond its key markets in the U.K. and Italy, bringing its employee spend management tools into new regions.
The $4.85 million in fresh funding for Canada-based Hubdoc is a show of support for the company's cloud accounting solution, which targets automated financial document collection and processing. BDC IT Venture Fund and Round13 Capital led the seed funding, reports said, while Hyde Park Venture Partners and other backers also participated. Hubdoc provides an application that uses machine learning and cloud computing to analyze financial documents for reporting, auditing and reconciliation purposes. The company holds a strong presence in North America, and its latest funding will be used to propel growth in Australia, where it recently launched, and the U.K., as well as to focus on innovation, sales, marketing and product development.