25/2/2019 – Validus Capital, a P2P lending platform based in Singapore has today secured S$20.5 million (about US$15.2 million) in a Series B funding led by FMO, a development bank from Netherlands.
FMO, which is 51 percent owned by the Dutch government, focuses its investment in the private sector growth in emerging markets. This creates a clear alignment with Validus’ business model.
“It’s our mandate to support SMEs in the private sector to have access to banks,” said Amo de Vette, the senior investment officer at FMO.
He also cited the partnership between Validus and the Rachmat family, which owns the agribusiness conglomerate Triputra Group, as its local partner in Indonesia – adding that Validus’ ability to secure strong local partnerships is another key factor.
Other investors in the round also include Singapore’s Openspace Ventures, Taiwan’s financial services Cathay Financial Holdings, Temasek’s investment arm Vertex Ventures, Thailand’s AddVentures by SCG, and Vietnam’s VinaCapital Ventures.
Founded in 2015, Validus Capital provides a P2P lending service platform to connect qualified investors, institutional investors and SMEs to help SMEs obtain short-term financing.
The startup obtained the capital market license issued by the HKMA in December 2017 and has so far contributed more than S$180 million (about US$133 million) disbursed in over 2,800 business funding, with an average facility value of S$70,000.
With this new Series B capital fundings, Validus will drive technology and data analytics, particularly in artificial intelligence and machine learning. The startup will also invest in market expansion into Indonesia in the second quarter of this year and Vietnam at the end of this year.
For its Indonesia expansion, Validus said that it has already registered itself with the Financial Services Authority (OJK) and will be able to begin operations in the next one or two months.
The startup has given itself 1 to 1.5 years for its operations to fully launch in the market. The startup noted that it will be eligible to apply for P2P license at least one year after registration.
Ajit Raikar, the CEO and co-founder of Validus Capital said: “Southeast Asia is one of the fastest growing economic regions globally, where there is a clear need for alternative financing platforms such as Validus to complement the traditional banking and financial infrastructures. Having a strong team, technology and data science capabilities has allowed us to partner with strategic global investors for our next growth stage.”
“This reaffirms that we are well on track to deliver on our strong growth forecasts, and our ambition to become a digital ‘bank-like’ fintech for undeserved SMEs is well supported with two leading sovereign funds investing into Validus.”