Home Remitly becomes the latest tech unicorn after raising $85 million
Remitly becomes the latest tech unicorn after raising $85 million

Remitly becomes the latest tech unicorn after raising $85 million

  • Published: 30th July 2020

Remitly, a Seattle-based money transfer company, is the latest unicorn. In a statement yesterday, the company said that it had raised $85 million from a group of investors. The new funding valued the company at $1.25 billion.

Remitly becomes a unicorn

For starters, Remitly is a money transfer company that focuses on remittances. Started in 2011, the company helps immigrants living abroad to send money to their family and friends back at home.

Since then, the company has been growing, helped mostly by debt and equity investors. In 2019, the firm raised $135 million in equity and $85 million in debt. The new funding round brings the total amount raised to about $505 million.

The new funding round was led by PayU, a payment company that is owned by Prosus, the technology arm of Naspers. Other investors are DN Capital, Generation Investments, Stripes, and Top Tier. Most of these investors are previous backer of the company.

The funding comes at a pivotal time for global money transfers. In April this year, World Bank predicted that remittances would fall by about 20% this year. However, many money transfer companies have reported otherwise. For example, firms like PayPal and Squarer’s CashApp have reported their best months recently.

Remitly, too, has seen a surge of demand. In a statement, the firm said that customer growth has increased by 200% compared to 2019. It has served 300 million customers from more than 70 countries. This growth is mostly because more people are embracing new technologies that allow them to send money without visiting a physical location. In a statement, Matt Oppenheimer, the firm’s CEO said:

“The future of remittances has always been digital, but that shift has accelerated rapidly over the past few months with the demand for safe and convenient solutions to send money. And with this investment, we are eager to continue innovating and building superior products that will meet our customers’ needs today and for years to come.”

Remitly joins other fintech firms raising money

Remitly is not the only fintech firm raising tons of money. Yesterday, we wrote that TransferWise, had raised more than $300 million in the secondary market at a valuation of more than $5 billion. Before that, we wrote about companies like Remessa Online and TransferGo that had raised $30 million combined.

At the same time, a look at the stock market shows that fintech is among the best sectors to be at today. For example, PayPal, a company that was started about 20 years ago has now become the second-biggest financial services firm in the world. Square, another firm has a higher valuation than most banks in the US.

Are you in the process of sending money to another country? At MoneyTransfers, we can help you save money by showing you the transaction costs charged by hundreds of companies.

Crispus Nyaga

Crispus Nyaga is a full-time financial analyst and trader with more than 7 years in the industry. He has been fortunate to work for several fintech companies, mostly from Europe, Asia, and North America. His work is published in leading platforms like Seeking Alpha, Invezz, InvestingCube, Capital.com, and Marketwatch. Crispus operates from a private office in Nairobi.