Creditas, a Brazilian fintech platform has raised $260 million in a newly concluded Series F funding round that brings the company’s valuation to $4.8 billion, up from $1.75 billion in December 2020 when it raised $255 million.
The new funding round brings the total amount raised by the company to $829 million from more than six funding rounds. The Series F funding round was led by Fidelity Management and Research LLC and saw the participation of existing investors QED Investors, VEF, SoftBank Latin America Fund, SoftBank Vision Fund 1, Lightock, Kazek Ventures, Headline, Wellington Management and Advent International via affiliate Sunley House Capital. New participants include Spanish fintech Actyus and Greentrail Capital.
Creditas started out in 2012 as a lending platform based on collaterals thriving on a marketplace model. It ran partnerships with banks that enabled it to provide credit facilities tied to collaterals at rates lower than what the traditional system had to offer(around 30% APR compared to 85% APR). Eventually, in 2016, it evolved. The company built its own platform that took these banks out of the formula. It became the entity securing funds for loans on its platforms.
Fast forward to 2019, three years later, the company further evolved into a customer-focused platform. The company uses assets gotten as collateral to deliver cheaper financing. For instance, a car owner could use his car to take a loan from Creditas at a low-interest rate. If such a customer wants, he could also get another car through Creditas’ marketplace, say a few years later. Creditas could also provide insurance for that new car.
According to Creditas’ CEO Sergio Furio, “Today we are a fintech company that uses those assets to deliver cheaper financing. Beyond that, we also deliver protection and a marketplace for other verticals beyond cars”, meaning that pushing to become “a one-stop solution for those seeking a digital-first experience in everything related to their house, car, motorcycles, and salary-based benefits”. Creditas can achieve this thanks to its car marketplace called Creditas Auto, its e-commerce platform called Creditas Store that powers a payroll-deductable buy now, pay later model that allows people to pay later for purchases, and its partnership with Voltz, a Brazilian manufacturer of electric motorcycles.
Creditas is also present in Mexico which it ventured into about eighteen months ago. According to CEO Sergio Furio, Mexico “has proven to be a strategic engine for growth. We believe Creditas can become a true disruptor in the Mexican market being able to democratize access to financial products and consumer solutions alike”.
Creditas has over 4,200 employees and says it will continue to hire thanks to the new funding. “We plan to continue growing by nurturing and expanding our ecosystem, such as providing financial solutions to our marketplace customers, launching new products, extending our geographic reach — including our recent successful entry into Mexico and the expansion of our tech hub in Valencia, Spain — and selectively pursuing strategic M&A opportunities”, he said.
While the company will continue investing in acquisitions, CEO Sergio Furio said “This funding round will help us increase our tech, marketing and operations teams but the speed of growth from an employee perspective will probably slow down”. He also mentioned that the company has its eyes out and is watching for the best time to go public.