Serial entrepreneur Satyen Kothari's fintech startup Cube gets funding
In its first round of external funding, Mumbai-based fin-tech startup Cube Wealth has raised $2 million (Rs 14.6 crore) from Singapore-based venture fund Beenext, Hong Kong-headquartered Asuka Holdings and US-based early-stage venture fund 500 Startups.
The company, which helps individuals to manage and plan their personal wealth, said in a statement: “The investment will be used to grow the depth of the product and expand reach in more markets in India.”
Cube Wealth, a platform where users can get investment advice from experts, was founded by Satyen Kothari, who had co-founded online payments firm Citrus Pay. Two years ago, Citrus Pay was sold for $130 million in one of the largest fin-tech cash deals in India.
Cube Wealth, operated by Cube Consumer Services Pvt. Ltd, was founded in June this year.
Kothari said in a statement, “We believe the hard-working Indian middle class deserves better wealth-creation options and advice and service than the standard insurance policy or mutual fund that is sold to them today. All in an app that is simple to use and automates wealth creation for them while letting them have control at all times.”
Kothari, who has spent almost eight years in India and before that, close to 15 years in the Silicon Valley, has started companies in the areas of marketing automation, e-commerce and consulting. His career includes stints with several start-ups and larger companies such as Intuit, First Data, Cisco, AOL, Yahoo, Frog design and Apple. He is also an active angel investor on the Investment Committee of Stanford Angels and Entrepreneurs (India), and has a master’s degree in computer science from Stanford University with a specialisation in tech entrepreneurship.
Teru Sato, founder, Beenext, said in a statement, “His (Kothari’s) passion for doing what’s right for the consumer in terms of design-thinking and customer-centricity makes him a special entrepreneur in my opinion… The country has a large and aspirational middle class that deserves high-quality products and services in all areas of life.”
The fin-tech space of personal wealth management is hotting up these days.
In October, digital payments firm One MobiKwik Systems Pvt. Ltd acquired online wealth management platform Clearfunds, entering a segment where bigger rival Paytm has already set foot. This was the first acquisition by MobiKwik, which didn't disclose the financial details of the deal but said it planned to invest $15 million (Rs 110 crore) over the next year to expand its wealth management business. Through the acquisition, MobiKwik said its 107 million customers will soon be able to start investing in mutual funds.
The development came just a month after Paytm, the market leader in digital payments, launched its Paytm Money wealth management unit. Paytm had made its maiden capital infusion, of Rs 9 crore, into the unit in April. At the time, Paytm had said that it planned to invest $10 million in the new business.
The fin-tech space of personal wealth management space has also seen a few funding deals.
In February, Mumbai-based personal finance startup Fincash.com raised Rs 1 crore ($150,000) in a fresh round from a group of angel investors from the financial services sector, a company statement said. Shepard Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which runs Fincash, had raised $100,000 (Rs 64 lakh) mid-last year from angel investors, taking the total funding to $250,000 so far.
In November 2017, Bengaluru-based Finwizard Technology Pvt. Ltd, which runs wealth management app Fisdom, raised $3.84 million (Rs 25 crore) in a Series B round led by Quona Capital Management Ltd, a venture capital firm that focuses on the fin-tech sector.