Investment app Syfe raises $ 29.6 million in Series B, led by repeater Valar Ventures – TechCrunch

Syfe founder Dhruv Arora

Southeast Asian investment apps have raised a lot of money, and some apps are now also raising quick follow-up rounds. For example, Indonesian robo-advisor app Bibit Raised $ 65 million in May Only four months from the $ 30 million growth round.Currently based in Singapore Syfe Announced that it closed the $ 40 million SGD Series B in just nine months. That series A.. He said all full-time employees of Syfe will receive shares in the company.

Valar Ventures was the main investor in the latest round, also leading Syfe’s Series A, demonstrating that fintech-focused venture capital has invested in Asian start-ups for the first time. Repeater pre-site capital and unbound also participated.

This brings Syfe’s total funding to date to S $ 70.7 million (approximately US $ 52.3 million) since its inception in 2019. The startup didn’t reveal a Series B post-money rating, but founder and CEO Dhruv Arora told TechCrunch that it had increased by 3.6. The company also does not disclose total user numbers, but assets under management have quadrupled since January, primarily due to user referrals and launches of new products such as Syfe Cash + and the Core portfolio.

“Honestly, we weren’t really thinking about raising Series B,” Arora told TechCrunch. “We’ve seen some good results with Series A resources. We’ve actually expanded our team and launched new products and options for our users.” Syfe probably even more to launch a new round. He added that he could have waited six months to a year.

Arora says the cost of acquiring Syfe is very low, with about 50% to 70% of new users receiving nominations from existing customers each month. Since the beginning of this year, Singapore has doubled its team to more than 100 people, allowing startups to explore different types of distribution strategies and partnerships. The app currently has users in 42 countries, but is actively marketing only in Singapore, which holds a Capital Markets Service license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). We will announce the second market soon.

Syfe was founded in 2017 and released the app in July 2019. Prior to launching Syfe, he was an investment banker at UBS Investment Bank and then Vice President and Growth Officer at Grofers, an Indian grocery delivery startup.

Private investment rate in Southeast Asia is still low, but interest is Significantly surged in the last year.. One of the most commonly cited reasons is the economic impact of COVID-19. This has allowed people to profit from money rather than keeping it in their savings account.

“Most of my career was part of Hong Kong, Singapore, and India. Culturally, I think we’ve always been told to save, save, save,” says Arora. “It makes sense because banks gave good interest rates, but now the majority of economies are in negative real interest rates.” As consumers become more familiar with online wallets and other digital financial services, This prepared for the introduction of investment apps and attracted customers who might not have gone to traditional brokerage firms.

Arora said he was hoping that people would become more interested in investing, but gradually, in about five to seven years. Instead, that shift is happening much faster. “In my view, tomorrow’s savings account will be a smart investment account. That’s my view since we started Syfe, but last year it had to happen and it had to happen bigger. So I think this wave will continue, “he says.

Many investment apps focus on millennial users, but Syfe’s target demographics are broader. In the last 6-9 months, Arora states that the platform has seen an increase in users over the age of 50, with the oldest being 93.

“Users in that segment will be a larger percentage, and in reality they usually have more disposable income. In our experience, the average customer in their 50s is 30-40. It’s almost double the traditional demographics, “says Arora.

Of the many investment apps that have emerged in Southeast Asia, users most often choose Syfe. Stashaway, Endowus and Autowealth when hunting for platforms. According to Arora, retail investment in the region is still very low, so there is plenty of room for growth in this space. “I think it’s still super early in the game, because if there’s plenty of room for multiple players and the acquisition metrics are set properly, this can be a very profitable business. I think more players will enter this domain. “

From a differentiating point of view, Syfe focuses on new product development and user localization and personalization, allowing customers to create more customized portfolios.

Syfe has a team of financial advisors for users who want personal consultation, but according to Arora, most Syfe investors rely entirely on the app to decide how to invest. Over the last nine months, we’ve added only one new advisor to our team, but we’re focused on making the user interface more intuitive.

“Human touch is optional, but it’s not required and is often only needed to help people understand the offer once,” says Arora. “But our goal has always been to be a tech company, to make the app very intuitive and to be able to use the product with very limited guidance, whether 18 or 93 years old.”

Andrew McCormack, founding partner of Valar Ventures, said in a press statement: “Syfe was the first investment in Asia and was impressed by the rapid and sustainable growth of the last two years. The company has the opportunity to meet the savings and investment needs of the fast-growing HNWIs in Asia. Is still important and I am confident that Syfe will continue to grow its pace. “ Investment app Syfe raises $ 29.6 million in Series B, led by repeater Valar Ventures – TechCrunch

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