Illuminate Financial, a venture capital firm based in London, announced the closure of its $100 million fintech fund to support emerging startups working in the financial technology sector. The fund received backing from JPMorgan, Barclays, IHS Markit and Deutsche Boerse.
According to the official announcement, JPMorgan joined the fund as the newest partner. Illuminate Financial highlighted that it has already made seven investments from the new fund. The firm added that its successful first exit was achieved when payment firm, PayPal announced the acquisition of Curv last week.
Commenting on the recent announcement, Mark Beeston, Partner at Illuminate Financial, said: “There is no shortage of companies trying to sell their products to financial services firms. We had to find ways to filter. We did this by doing deep dives into areas we saw change about to take place in buyer groups. From crypto to wealth to ESG we pick up signals from our network and educate ourselves so we can make targeted investments and support our portfolio with additional insights on the board. The impact on our companies is, we hope, demonstrable.”
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JPMorgan and Fintech
The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated the adoption of financial technology as economies are shifting towards a cashless society. The fintech startups have reported significant growth in the last few months. The fintech sector of the UK secured nearly $4.1 billion investment in 2020. Joyce Chang, Chair of Global Research for Corporate and Investment Banking at JPMorgan, recently highlighted the importance of fintech during the coronavirus pandemic.
“Fintech is coming into the mainstream from this pandemic as there has been a significant demand for digital services, less in-person transactions. We’ve seen demand from millennials. We’ve seen demand from institutional investors for the first time as well,” Chang said.
Fintech startup Stripe recently secured nearly $600 million funding from Allianz X, Axa, Baillie Gifford, Fidelity Management & Research Company and Sequoia Capital. The company is now valued at nearly $95 billion.