Bank challenger Bunq raises largest European Series A at $228 million

Bunq, an Amsterdam-based challenger bank that offers bank accounts and debit cards from a mobile app, announces raising a $228 million Series A led by Pollen Street Capital, according to TechCrunch.

The company, which has been self-funded by CEO Ali Niknam since it was founded in 2012, has now reached a valuation of $1.9 billion. The external capital injection also gives Pollen Street Capital a 10% stake in Bunq.

Bunq says that the company plans to acquire small companies to fuel a growth plan, which it sees as a necessity considering the competitive challenger bank market. Bunq is also acquiring Capitalflow Group, an Irish lending company which was owned by Pollen Street Capital, highlighting this acquisition-based growth strategy.

The challenger banks services offers a range of financial services with controls via a mobile app, with plans ranging from €2.99 per month to €17.99 per month. These include shared accounts between friends and family, instant money transfer and split payments.

Users can also create sub-accounts for splitting bills and keeping track of individuals account balances. The company also offers a free travel card with a small number of features.

Niknam is also participating in the round with a $29.5 million investment, that brings his total financing for the company to $146.1 million. The platform, which operates in 30 European markets, has processed over €1 billion in user deposits, according to FinExtra.

“Everything has a right time. In the beginning of Bunq, it was important to get a laser user focus in the company. Having to also focus on fundraises and the needs of investors distracts. Bunq now is mature enough to start scaling up significantly, so more capital is welcome,” Niknam said.

In other recent fintech news, fleet financing startup Coast raises a $6 million seed round. Digital banking software platform Toqio also raised a $9.4 million seed round.

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