Payments Startup Raises $80M From SBI Group, Visa Invest and Others

Cross-border payments platform Currencycloud has raised $80 million in funding from SBI Group, Visa and other investors.

Per a Jan. 27 press release, London-based Currencycloud secured $80 million from SBI Group, Visa, International Finance Corporation, BNP Paribas and Siam Commercial Bank. Following the investment, Colleen Ostrowski, senior vice president and treasurer of Visa Inc, will join the board of Currencycloud.

By its own account, the startup — which provides embedded B2B cross-border payments — is going to allocate the raised funds for its further growth, expansion of its portfolio of emerging payment methods and development of its partner ecosystem. Currencycloud also intends to integrate with major software platforms and begin support of alternate payment methods such as mobile wallets, instant payments and cards.

SBI’s interest in crypto projects

SBI Group — one of the major investors in Currencycloud — has actively pursued partnerships and initiatives across the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry.

In late December 2020, SBI cooperated with Germany’s second-largest stock exchange Boerse Stuttgart Group to promote the adoption of digital assets. Specifically, SBI planned to invest an undisclosed amount in two digital asset-focused subsidiaries of Boerse Stuttgart Group — Boerse Stuttgart Digital Exchange and Boerse Stuttgart Digital Ventures.

That same month, SBI Holdings was considering paying shareholder dividends in the form of XRP tokens, following the same practice by its subsidiary MorningStar. SBI would launch the program during the fiscal year ending in March 2020, with Kitao further stating that it is opt-in.

Other recent investments

Payments behemoth Visa acquired financial technology firm Plaid for $5.3 billion. Plaid developed a network that allows users to easily connect their financial accounts to the apps they use to manage their financial lives.

January has seen an array of industry-related investments so far, with TaxBit, a crypto-oriented tax compliance firm, raised $5 million in a seed round that had seen participation from the Winklevoss twins’ family office, Winklevoss Capital, and major crypto exchange Binance invested an undisclosed sum in blockchain data monetization startup Numbers.