As a part of a weekly roundup, here is a list of some of the most important tech startups that have hit the headlines in Europe this week.
Paris-based Lydia grabs €70M to expand its mobile financial app across Europe
French fintech startup Lydia has raised an additional €70M in its Series B round of funding led by Accel. With this, the total Series B funding now stands at approx €107M, making it the largest round ever raised by a French fintech, claims the company.
Previous investors include Chinese e-commerce giant Tencent, Open CNP, and New Alpha.
Founded in 2013 by Antoine Porte and Cyril Chiche, Lydia is a P2P payment startup enabling users to get accounts, payment cards, loans, insurance, and gift cards. The payments service has 4 million users and a 30% market share among French Millenials.
The raised capital will be used to accelerate Lydia’s product roadmap to capture the shift in consumer preferences towards mobile-first apps with digital banking and financial health capabilities.
In addition, the company will also use the money to expand its geographic footprint. In 2020, Lydia successfully launched its services in Portugal and expects to expand into more of Europe in 2021.
Outpost24 lands €19.7M to accelerate global expansion
London-based SaaS platform Outpost24, an innovator in identifying and managing cybersecurity exposure, has raised SEK200M (approx €19.7M) in a fresh round of funding.
Founded in 2001 by Carsten Bang Jensen and Jesper Birch Jensen, Outpost24 is a vulnerability management company providing solutions to help users identify and mitigate weaknesses in their network.
The company offers real-time vulnerability alerts and solution-based reports that facilitate the instant recognition of imminent threats. With more than 40 locations worldwide, Outpost24 collectively scans over 400 million IP addresses weekly and detects more than 12 thousand vulnerabilities on a daily basis.
Outpost24 serves leading organisations across a wide range of sectors including financial and insurance, government, healthcare, retail, telecommunications, technology, and manufacturing.
The company is owned by Monterro – a B2B software investor in the Nordics, with a mission to turn Nordic software companies into market leaders.
Port 6 raises €1M to build the future of human-computer interaction
Finnish startup, Port 6, a startup building the future of human-computer interaction, has raised €1M in its Seed round of funding. The round was led by investment fund Superangel, and saw participation from Superhero Capital, Charlotta Bjornberg-Paul, as well as the founders of Pipedrive: Urmas Purde, Timo Rein, and Peep Vain.
The company was founded in 2020 by Ohto Pentikainen, Jamin Hu, Lauri Tuominen, and Eemil Visakorpi. Port 6’s first prototype enables typing, gaming, playing musical instruments, creating artwork, controlling an operating system, and many more use cases with only a wristband.
Now, the company is building AI-driven, biometrics-based technologies that allow creativity and interaction in augmented and virtual computing platforms.
Robotics specialist German Bionic raises €16.3M
Augsburg, Germany-based German Bionic, a manufacturer of smart robotic exoskeletons and related software solutions, has raised $20M (approx €16.3M) in its Series A round of funding.
The round was led by Samsung Catalyst Fund and Munich-based MIG, with participation from US investors like Storm Ventures and Benhamou Global Ventures, and Japanese VC firm IT Farm.
The company was founded in 2016 by Armin G. Schmidt, Dr Peter Heiligensetzer, and Michael Halbherr. German Bionic is an industrial startup that develops and builds exoskeletons for use in industrial production.
Exoskeletons are human-machine systems that combine human intelligence and machine power, thereby enabling individuals to gain increased strength and endurance.
The company’s German Bionic CRAY is a user-friendly intelligent wearable human-robotic exoskeleton, which supports users in different industries while manual handling of goods and tools. It is designed to reduce lower back compression forces and therefore protects the user from lower back injuries. German Bionic is headquartered in Augsburg with bases in Berlin, Tokyo, and Singapore.
CoachHub raises €24.4M to accelerate its growth in the digital coaching market
Berlin-based CoachHub, a “talent development” platform that pairs employees with business coaches, has raises additional $30M (approx €24.4M) led by new investor Draper Esprit, alongside existing investors HV Capital, Partech, Speedinvest, signals Venture Capital and RTP Global. This round brings the total funds raised to $50M (approx €40.8M) following the company’s $20M (approx €16.3M) funding round in late 2019.
Founded in 2018 by Matti Niebelschuetz and Yannis Niebelschuetz, Coachhub is a “mobile coaching cloud” that enables personalised coaching for employees at all career levels, through live coaching sessions via video conferencing. The company turns managers into inspiring leaders, boost team performance and help employees grow both personally and professionally.
In just 2 years the team claims to have created a global network of more than 1000 certified coaches across 6 continents, making CoachHub the fastest-growing European company in this sector.
The raised capital will be used to accelerate CoachHub’s growth in the digital coaching market, with plans to add 1000 coaches to its network and make 120 new hires across Europe, Asia and the US, which would bring the team to 300.
Besides, the team is also working towards its think tank “Coaching Lab”, which uses machine learning technology and business intelligence to drive behaviour R&D in the field of coaching; it also offers contributions and tools to support the development of employees.
Cazoo to acquire car subscription service, Drover
British online car retailer, Cazoo, has announced that it has agreed to acquire Drover, a UK’s car subscription platform, for an undisclosed amount. With this acquisition, Cazoo will now have the option of purchasing, financing or subscribing to the cars on its platform.
This will also help Cazoo’s expansion plans in the European and other markets due to Drover’s fast-growing subscription business in the region.
The company claims to have been hailed as the Amazon of cars in the UK, Cazoo had planned to launch its own subscription service in late 2021 and this acquisition will now accelerate its plans in the fast-growing Cars-as-a-Service (CaaS) market as it seeks to extend its offering to also become the Netflix of cars.
Cazoo was founded in 2018 by Alexander Edward Chesterman. The company is a developer of an online used car marketplace designed to transform the way people buy, finance, or rent used cars.
As for Drover, it was founded in 2015 by Felix Leuschner and Matt Varughese. It is a mobility-as-a-service platform through which customers can get a car from 1-24 months with the car, maintenance and insurance included – for one simple monthly subscription payment and without the need to take on debt. Currently, Drover has 100 staff across London, Lisbon, Paris and Bucharest.
Recently, in October 2020, Cazoo raised an additional £240M (approx €265M) funding led by General Catalyst, D1 Capital Partners, and funds managed by Fidelity Management & Research Company and Blackrock. Existing and new investors also participated in this round including L Catterton, Durable Capital Partners, The Spruce House Partnership, Novator, Mubadala Capital, and dmg ventures, amongst others.