European challenger bank bunq joins forces with early-stage VC, Antler, to act as a banking partner for Antler’s innovative portfolio of startups in the Netherlands This partnership will ensure Antler’s startups simply manage the financial aspect of their business and gain back valuable time to build tech that can help battle COVID-19.
Bunq was founded in 2012 by Ali Niknam (1981) in Amsterdam, who managed to get the first European banking permit in over 35 years. He set out to radically change the traditional banking industry and, as its sole investor, invested €44.9m in bunq. bunq’s latest publicly available number of user deposits is €433,410,761 based on the deposits in December 2019. Throughout 2019 the total amount of user deposits doubled and is increasing every day. The company is currently running in 30 European markets: the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain, France, Belgium, Ireland, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, the United Kingdom and Norway and Iceland.
On the other hand, Antler is a global startup generator in Amsterdam and early-stage VC that is building the next wave of tech. With the mission to turn exceptional individuals into great founders, Antler aims to create hundreds of companies globally over the next five years. We select the world’s most brilliant and determined people, help them find the right co-founder and connect them to a top tier network of advisors and experts worldwide. Antler breaks the barriers to entrepreneurship by providing funding from day one and building strong teams from the ground up while enabling founders to rapidly launch and scale their ideas.
Despite everything, history’s proved new businesses can thrive during economic uncertainty. In the US, 60,000 new businesses sprouted every month a month following the financial crisis, compared to 40,000 two years before. SARS cost the economy billions but companies like Alibaba emerged at the same time proving in times of crisis, the season is ripe for entrepreneurs. Antler and bunq recognise the importance of this time and are working to eradicate financial admin and stress, which could be a hindrance to uncovering great solutions.
Kim Oreskovic, Partner at Antler says, “Economists predict that COVID-19 will create economic turmoil that surpasses GFC 2007/8. Now, more than ever, the world needs innovative startups to develop unprecedented solutions to match the unprecedented circumstances. We are already seeing profound visionary solutions startups can have. Many of our startups have answered the call to address COVID-19. One company from the first Amsterdam cohort, Fusedbone, has created technology that uses UV light to sterilise hospital tools and hands more effectively with the most basic materials. We are proud to say that together with bunq, we are here to ensure businesses have the right team and tools to solve the most pressing problem in the world right now.”
Opening a bank account is critical for businesses but through traditional banks, the process can be complex for startups. However, bunq offers a seamless and easy way for startups to open a bunq Business account or its sustainable bunq Business Supergreen account.
Ali Niknam, Founder and CEO of bunq says: “With bunq, early-stage startups can open an account within a matter of minutes and monitor their finances with zero effort, saving entrepreneurs time and giving them the focus they need to grow their business. Now, in a time when the world needs brilliant new businesses, removing obstacles for founders is imperative”
Kelvin Aongola, a bunq user and CEO of Antler portfolio company LabelFuse, adds: “It’s paramount for us to get access to a bank account as soon as possible. The more time we spend on business admin, the less we have to actually grow the business. bunq approved our business account in under an hour. Giving us that much needed time compared to other traditional banks.”