Aspire bags USD 158 Mn to build end-to-end financial operating system

Author : Pankaj Singh | Published Date : 2021-09-27 

Singapore-headquartered neobank Aspire has secured USD158 million in Series B funding for continuing its efforts to build an “end-to-end financial operating system” for businesses in Southeast Asia.

The round was led by an unnamed global fintech-focused growth equity investor and saw participation from CE Innovation Fund, DST Global Partners, B Capital Partners, and returning investors Picus Capital, MassMutual Ventures, AFG, and Hummingbird Ventures. The round consisted of USD 58 million in equity and USD 100 million in debt, from which debt capital was offered by Fasanara Capital.

The funding round also involved angel investors from some prominent fintech startups, including Wise co-founder Taavet Hinrikus; Uala founder Pierpaolo Barbieri; Payfazz co-founder Hendra Kwik; Qonto co-founders Steve Anavi and Alexandre Port; Xendit co-founder Moses Lo; and Clara co-founder Gerry Colyer.

It is worth noting that Aspire was initially established in 2018 to grant working capital loans for small and medium-sized businesses, but its service portfolio now comprises corporate cards and automated invoice processing, bank accounts for cross-border businesses, all of which are linked to financial management software.

Over 10,000 business accounts have been opened on Aspire, and they transact around USD 2 billion annually, increasing twofold in five months from May.

Co-founder and CEO Andrea Baronchelli mentioned that they are trying to connect traditional banking services with software as they feel that the biggest hurdle is that these two are completely unlinked.

People have access to accounts and cards, but they are not linked to the software. By putting them together, they want to move beyond the concept of digital banking and mainly create an operating system where the banking product and software will co-exist, he added.

Aspire’s working capital loans and credit cards usually start at around USD 50,000 and can go up to USD 300,000 but can be customized as businesses expand to increase credit lines.

The company aims to develop a one-stop, end-to-end ecosystem for SMEs, a major differentiator from other fintech competitors. It is presently working on its payroll system to better serve clients’ employees residing in different countries.

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Pankaj Singh

Pankaj Singh

Endowed with a post graduate degree in management and finance, Pankaj Singh has been a part of the online content domain for quite a while. Having worked previously as a U.K. insurance underwriter for two years, he now writes articles for fractovia.org and other online portals. He can be contacted at- [email protected] | https://twitter.com/PankajSingh2605

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