Santander InnoVentures, the London based fintech venture capital fund of Santander Group, announced that it has secured a further USD 100 million in funding from the Group’s balance sheet. Launched in 2014, the fund is now set to deploy a total of USD 200 million (up from the $100m originally allocated) in minority stakes in financial technology startups. This new commitment highlights Santander’s goal of remaining at the forefront of innovation in the financial services industry, and builds on the bank’s ‘Fintech 2.0’ philosophy of collaboration and partnership with small and start-up companies.
Ana Botín, Group executive chairman of Banco Santander, said: “A deeper investment in our Fintech fund represents Santander’s success in investing in disruptive new technologies that will help our transformation towards being the best bank for our customers – in the simple personal and fair way they expect and deserve today. The fund’s base in the UK has allowed it to benefit from London’s position as a fintech hub, while talent-spotting our investments on a global basis. Santander remains committed to the UK and excited about its Fintech enterprises.”
Peter Jackson, senior executive vice president and head of Innovation at Santander, said: “The fund is an essential part of Santander’s broader innovation strategy. The success of the work Mariano and the team are doing is confirmed by this second round of funding. Our $200 million total investment, demonstrates the group’s commitment to innovation, and to the role of InnoVentures as a catalyst for transformation, by finding and partnering with technology companies that allows us to bring the next generation of services to our customers, globally.”
Since inception in 2014, the fund has already invested globally in a series of market-leading fintech startups: Socure (digital identity), SigFig (wealth management), Ripple, Digital Asset, Elliptic (blockchain), Kabbage (companies financing), Cyanogen (mobile ecosystems), MyCheck and iZettle (payments).
Managing partner Mariano Belinky said: “This commitment allows the fund to continue expanding the work we are doing across geographies and investment themes. It will help us expand our portfolio to exciting geographies like Latin America and explore more opportunities across Europe. It will also allow us to explore new and exciting themes around artificial intelligence, machine learning, cognitive computing, digital banking and others that allow us to further improve Santander’s value proposition to its customers.”
Santander InnoVentures’ participation with its portfolio companies goes beyond traditional financial venture capital involvement. The fund provides capital but also access to the scale of Santander Group as a global financial institution, operating in 10 core markets in Europe and the Americas and serving more than 120 million customers. Additionally, InnoVentures portfolio companies get access to the Group’s experts in areas such as regulation, operations and technology.
For more information on Santander InnoVentures investments and the strategic investment philosophy behind the fund, please visit http://santanderinnoventures.com.