London-based double unicorn Zilch has extended its Series C round to more than £130 million.
The additional £40m+ funding takes its total funding to more than $460m in debt and equity.
The buy now pay later scaleup recently became Europe’s fastest ever FinTech unicorn valued at $2bn+, with the latest funds maintaining that valuation.
The additional capital will be used to further fund business growth, with a focus on the US market where Zilch recently opened its Miami office and launched with more than 150,000 pre-registered customers.
Early numbers are showing significant momentum with growth rates of over 4x what was achieved in the UK, where Zilch reached two million new customers in just 18 months.
It says its direct-to-consumer model allows it to build relationships with its customers and scale significantly faster than its competitors. It allows both debit (which accrues up to 2% instant cashback and rewards) and credit transactions on its platform, with no interest or late fees.
“In a world of rising interest rates and inflation, it has never been more important for customers to have access to a payment product that they can depend on for savings, deals and cash flow management with no interest or late fees of any kind,” said founder and CEO Philip Belamant.
“Open banking data shows how customers of all ages are migrating away from traditional high-cost credit cards or overdrafts in favour of services like Zilch – saving them millions.
“This extension is a great endorsement of our unique model as well as our investors’ belief in our ability to deliver on our mission to create the world’s most empowering way for people to pay for anything, anywhere.”
Zilch’s investors include Ventura Capital, Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Gauss Ventures, DMG Ventures, M&F Fund and Limited Ventures, while its partners include Cross River, Checkout.com, Cashflows, Experian, GPS, Monavate, Marqeta, Mastercard, Onfido, Provenir and Socure.
Sean O’Connor, co-founder, added: “Since we founded Zilch and began raising capital, the markets have been difficult to predict given COVID and now the downturn the markets are currently seeing.
“We believe our focus on alignment with the consumer, delivered by our innovative business model, has the potential to create significant long-term value for shareholders.”
The funding announcement follows the recent government news that BNPL firms are set to face regulation in the UK as HM Treasury sets out a framework for the Financial Conduct Authority to review the sector.
Zilch worked with the FCA as part of the Sandbox Programme from inception and was one of the UK’s first BNPL providers to be granted an FCA licence to perform regulated Consumer Credit activities.
Earlier this year, it partnered with Experian to pioneer reciprocal reporting of payment plans to the credit reporting agency’s data set. It says this ensures consumers’ financial health by providing greater transparency and accuracy, while rewarding customers for their responsible behaviour allowing them to build credit scores.