Singapore: Fintech startup C88 secures $28m in Experian-led Series C round

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Singapore-headquartered fintech startup C88 Financial Technologies Group has secured a $28-million Series C round led by global information services provider Experian, it said in an announcement on Monday.

The round was joined by responsAbility Investments AG, DEG, InterVest, FengHe Fund Management, Pelago Capital and Fuchsia Venture Capital as well as existing investors Monk’s Hill Ventures, Telstra Ventures, Kickstart Ventures and Kejora Ventures.

London-listed Experian said this was one of the largest Series C rounds raised in Southeast Asia. The latest funding round will bring C88’s aggregate funding to over $45 million. The startup had last raised a Series B led by Telstra Ventures in September 2016, while Experian last led a $30-million Series D round in India-based BankBazaar last October.

“In Southeast Asia, as little as 48 percent of more than 600 million people have access to a bank account. Exclusion from the traditional banking system makes it almost impossible for individuals and businesses to borrow or save money; significant barriers towards social and economic progress.

“Experian has been working closely with financial institutions and start-ups across Asia, including C88, to progress this,” said Experian Asia Pacific CEO Ben Elliott.

C88 owns and operates licensed financial marketplaces for consumers in the small and medium businesses segment – in Indonesia and in the Philippines. It will be expanding its operations to Thailand.

Launched in 2013, the startup claims that both of its platforms have served over 50 million consumers. Through the investment and commercial partnership, Experian will embed its software and decisioning solutions into C88’s platforms and its large partner distribution network, extending C88’s current offering from consumers to financial institutions.

“We are immensely proud to have closed one of the largest Series C fintech rounds in Southeast Asia, particularly from investors who share our vision of empowering consumers and driving financial inclusion in the region. There are over 350 million consumers in Indonesia and Philippines alone. We’re confident that we can drive a positive impact in our societies and communities by unlocking previously inaccessible financial products and services,” said C88 co-founder and CEO John Patrick Ellis.

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