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International money transfer service Remitly raises $85m at a $1.5bn valuation

The company saw its customer base grow by 200 per cent year on year in 2020.

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Matt Oppenheimer/Remitly

Seems like the world of money transfers is a lucrative one. 

Just hours after TransferWise announced a massive $319m secondary share sale that saw the company valued at $5bn, rival remittance fintech Remitly has swiftly followed suit. 

The fintech announced the closure of an $85m funding round, which was led by Prosus’ PayU, and which saw the fintech valued at $1.5bn yesterday afternoon. 

Other existing investors in the round include, DN Capital, which has invested in fintechs such as BNext and Raisin, Generation Investment Management, of which former Vice President Al Gore is chairman of, and Stripes, which has invested in the likes of Pleo and Grubhub. 

Threshold Ventures, Owl Rock Capital, Princeville Capital and Top Tier Capital Partners also participated. 

Matt Oppenheimer, Remitly’s co-founder and CEO, said: “As the current health crisis continues to devastate the global economy and disproportionately impact developing countries around the world, immigrants are increasingly turning to digital solutions to address their financial needs and ensure they are still able to send critical funds home to their loved ones.” 

“Our digital solutions have never been needed more than they are today. This latest round of funding will allow us to continue meeting our customers’ broad set of financial needs, and providing affordable, convenient and secure solutions as we navigate this uncertain time and beyond.” 

According to Remitly, global remittances were forecasted to decline by 20 per cent in 2020 as a result of the pandemic, but Remitly has seen a 200 per cent growth in its customer base on last year. 

Laurent le Moal, PayU CEO and member of Remitly’s board of directors, added: “Since we first invested in Remitly in 2017 we have been impressed by its consistent track record of growth, including during the recent COVID turbulence.” 

“The business has scaled into an international organisation while keeping true to its mission of financial inclusion.” 

Users of Remitly’s service can send money almost instantly to over 18,000 partner banks across 17 different countries. 

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