Estonia-headquartered LHV Group has raised £30 million via a rights issue as it seeks to secure a UK banking licence.

LHV UK is a banking services provider to over 200 FinTech and crypto companies and in the process of applying for a UK banking licence.

A portion of its parent company’s new funding will be used to capitalise the new UK bank, which is a key step in the banking licence application process. 

LHV Group is listed on the Nasdaq Baltic and is the largest domestic financial group in Estonia.

LHV UK currently operates across its offices in London and Leeds, where the company officially opened a new hub in May 2022, as well as Tallinn. 

LHV Group plans to separate the business operations of its retail bank, LHV Bank, from those of the London-headquartered FinTech -focused LHV UK: since 2018, the company has operated in the UK as LHV Bank’s UK branch. 

The company says the latest move will simplify compliance with regulatory and supervisory requirements and enable LHV UK to highlight its value proposition and the profitability of its operations to new investors.

LHV UK’s banking licence is subject to regulatory approval by the Prudential Regulatory Authority and Financial Conduct Authority.

“Confidence in LHV’s plans and activities is strong as our offering was oversubscribed 1.75 times,” said Madis Toomsalu, CEO of LHV Group.

“It is gratifying that the fundraise turned out to be attractive to existing and new investors, despite the subscription period taking place during a tense geopolitical environment and against the background of declining stock markets. 

“I want to thank investors for their trust – this is a great result that will allow us to capitalise the new bank that we are looking to establish in the UK.”

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Erki Kilu, CEO of LHV UK, commented: “The funds raised are a key step in the UK banking licence application process. In tandem with this ongoing process, we continue to scale up LHV UK’s operations.

“We’re currently hiring vigorously for our open positions across London, Leeds and Tallinn and continue to develop new client-facing products.”