Borro, the U.S. and UK-based online platform that people borrow money and put up luxury items as collateral, is today announcing $19 million in new funding led by strategic investments from Israel’s OurCrowd and Berlin’s Rocket Internet.
CEO and founder Paul Aitken tells me that the funding will be used for two main areas: moving into new geographical markets and more financial services. Specifically, tapping into Rocket Internet’s expertise, Borro will soon be making its way to entering emerging markets in South America and Asia, and using know-how from OurCrowd it plans to expand the instruments that it uses to finance its loans, with new features including a LendingClub-style crowdfunding platform, and more extended loan times beyond the six-month range Borro offers today.
Although Borro is not disclosing its valuation, Aitken tells me it is a “significant upround” compared to the company’s last $26 million equity raise. Some $6 million of the round being announced today came from OurCrowd (which claims this is the “world’s largest equity crowdfunding round” ever), while Rocket Internet — which had helped to seed the company in 2009 — increased its stake to 10%. Existing investors Canaan Partners, Eden Ventures, and Augmentum Capital also participated in the funding round.
All told, it took only about four weeks to start and close this round, he says.
The $19 million equity investment in the company comes less than a year after Borro raised $112 million from Victory Park Capital to fund loans on its platform. To date the company has raised over $200 million, combining both debt and equity rounds.
Aitken tells me that part of the reason for raising the funding now was because of the company’s growth. Borro is “just shy of breakeven”, with revenues growing at a rate of about 80% annually. Last year, the company made slightly under $20 million in sales on $75 million in loans. It is currently on a runrate of $100 million for this year, with total assets under management in 2014 exceeding $200 million.
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