Qupital, a fintech startup that payments itself as Hong Kong’s largest commerce financing platform for SMEs, has closed a $15 million Sequence A led by CreditEase FinTech Funding Fund (CEFIF), with participation from returning buyers Alibaba Hong Kong Entrepreneurs Fund and MindWorks Ventures, each individuals in its seed spherical. To this point, Qupital has raised $17 million, together with a seed spherical two years in the past, and can use its newest funding to broaden its provide chain financing merchandise, launch in mainland Chinese language cities and rent extra individuals for its tech growth and danger administration groups.
CreditEase, which offers loans and different monetary providers for SMEs in China, will act as a strategic investor, aiding with Qupital’s geographic growth. Current investor Alibaba has already helped Qupital attain small companies on its platform. Qupital will open branches in Chinese language cities together with Shanghai, Hangzhou, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, together with establishing a brand new expertise heart within the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Higher Bay Space for expertise and tech growth. In whole, it’s going to rent about 100 individuals for its Hong Kong workplace this yr.
Based in 2016, Qupital affords lending for SMEs that steadily have money circulation points as a result of they’re in a cycle of ready for invoices to be paid. Qupital’s loans cowl a lot of the worth of an bill, then matches that with buyers and funders who cowl the money with the expectation of a return. The corporate makes cash by charging SMEs a service charge that may be a mounted share of the whole bill worth after which a reduction charge, and taking a share of internet good points made by buyers.
Qupital has now processed 8,000 trades, totaling HKD $2 billion in worth. It received’t disclose what number of SMEs it has labored with, however co-founder and chairman Andy Chan says that quantity is within the a whole lot.
Chan tells TechCrunch that in China, Qupital is not going to compete immediately in opposition to conventional monetary establishments, as a result of it focuses on financing the Hong Kong enterprise entities of Chinese language firms in U.S. and Hong Kong foreign money, as an alternative of onshore renminbi. It can additionally goal SMEs underserved by conventional lenders, by utilizing various information sources to find out their creditworthiness.
In a ready assertion, CEFIF managing director Dennis Cong mentioned “The rising quantity of SME and cross-border buying and selling drives an enormous demand for various financing for SME’s who’re underserved out there and alternatives for buyers to earn a good risk-adjusted return. We stay up for working with Qupital to broaden its supply of capital base and create unparalleled funding alternatives for CreditEase.”