Most fintech companies are fine, but they’ve stopped blowing off econ class for mimosa brunches.
The energy and uncertainty of youth are headed back to school. Especially in fintech, which had the roughest semester last spring. First, there was the drama leading up to the breakup with the rich hottie. Then, bad grades came in right as summer party season kicked off, mom and dad took away the car and credit card, and the Venmo transfers came to a screeching halt. Thankfully, there was still a smartphone and social media to commiserate.
Fintech heads back to campus this fall with the same future promise of computer science and football season, but with a knowing look that says, “I may still want fortune to favor the bold, but I really need at least a C in economics this semester.” Fintech is still alive and well, Gonzobankers, and fintech deals are still happening. Here’s a few recent ones that caught our attention, and please, “Give us some slack, teach” on the school themes, ok?
Banks Bought More Fintechs (Until Summer Break Started!)
Keybank acquired student loan debt counseling service fintech Gradfin
Trusita acquired mobile savings gamification finance app Long Game
Fifth Third acquired home improvement and solar energy POS solutions provider Dividend Finance
Huntingtonacquired digital business-to-consumer payments SaaS provider Torana
Synovus acquired a 60% stake in payments tech firm Qualpay, launching the Maast Money-as-a-Service
Cross River announced a $620M fund raise, valuing the company at $3B
Lending Tech With Almost Steady Grades (Even With Rough Semesters)
Consumer lending and BNPL solution provider Amountacquired SMB digital account opening and insights platform Linear Financial Technologies. Amount also secured another funding round that included a partnership-related investment announced by PSCU
Insurance, investments, and lending services provider CUNA Mutual Group acquired loan origination provider Integrated Lending Technologies and announced significant investments in digital experiences company WithClutchand digital retailing/e-commerce platform CarSaverwith CUNA Mutual relaunching to market under the name TruStage
Insurance, lending, and risk provider Allied Solutionsacquired lending provider Credit Union Direct’s Lending Insights platform, and CUDL subsequently partnered with Zest.ai, relaunching CUDL’s origination, POS, and marketing suite under the name Origence arc
Credit wellness and score monitoring app Savvy Moneyannounced a new funding round including PE firm Spectrum Equity and credit bureau TransUnion
Personal finance app NerdWalletacquired credit recommendation platform On the Barrelhead
Digital lending POS provider BeSmarteeacquiring FlashSpread, an automating spreading tool that converts PDF tax documents for financial analysis
Commercial loan origination and management suite Suntell recapitalized with Arcadea Group
Commercial credit intelligence system provider OakNorthacquired small business cash flow forecasting startup Fluidly
Buy now, pay later (BNPL) provider Klarnaraised $800M, valued at $6.7B (down from $45B a year ago)
BNPL provider announced Scalapay$497M funding round
While neither an acquisition nor funding deal, the partnership deals separately struck by Salesforceand Q2(a Salesforce partner) with Rocket Mortgage have far reaching implications beyond just mortgage lending or just systems integration. Keep an eye on the initial banks working on these projects
Deals are still happening and — at this writing — the “student intervention” after the unfortunate alumni mixer event seems to have taken (fintech industry valuations improving a bit off their lows and fintech companies more focused on explicit utility value in the here-and-now).
Looking forward to seeing many of you after class during football season out at Finovate, AFT, and other mixers. Know of any fintech deals we’ve missed here? Email us.
-Sam & Chris
P.S. Every now and then you get the chance to get the band back together. Many of you may already know that Chris and I worked together in a prior band a decade ago. It’s good to be back together again at GonzoBanker mothership’s band, Cornerstone Advisors. #grateful -Sam