London fintech star Azimo lands millions from Rakuten

Lynsey Barber
Follow Lynsey
BRITAIN-ECONOMY-BANK-RATE-FOREX-MONEY
Azimo is expanding to Asia with new cash (Source: Getty)

More money is pouring into London fintech as one of its star startups has landed new investment from Japan's biggest ecommerce firm Rakuten, among others.

Digital money transfer firm Azimo has raised $15m (£10.3M) in a new round, bringing its total investment to $47m. The new cash will be used to fuel expansion in Asia.

“We serve a growing community of hardworking migrants who are changing the lives of their families and friends back in their home countries: over 80 per cent of our customers send money home for family support,” said founder and chief Michael Kent.

Read more: I'm a fintech startup founder and here's why I'm against Brexit

“But the $600bn remittance market still operates almost completely offline. Despite the sky-high fees, it’s all people know and are used to. We want to change this and give people the service they deserve – one that is low-cost, fast and has the human touch to make money transfer an easier and more satisfying process.”

The latest cash follows a $20m round less than a year ago, which then valued the firm at $100m.

It's not the first UK fintech firm to catch Rakuten's eye. Its fintech fund was among investors in Currency Cloud's $18m funding last year.

Read more: Forget Lemonade, Beyonce's invested in a watermelon startup

Global fintech investment rocketed 67 per cent in the first quarter of 2016 compared to the same period last year, according to recent research from Accenture. It totalled $5.3bn and was largely driven by Europe and Asia.

Azimo has also launched a new app for Android and iOS responding to a four-fold increase in mobile users over the past year. It comes with biometric login and greater integration with social media.

Related articles