September 24, 2019 / 11:04 AM / 22 days ago

U.S. business payments firm Fundbox raises $176 million

Sept 24 (Reuters) - Fundbox, a San Francisco-based startup focused on technology for business-to-business payments, on Tuesday said it raised $176 million in equity and secured a $150 million credit line it can use to lend to businesses.

While the consumer credit and digital payment industry has mushroomed, the transactions between companies have seen little improvement, said Eyal Shinar, CEO of Fundbox.

Companies often wait a month or more to get payments, and Fundbox aims to speed up that process. The startup also lends to clients, using online data to assess borrowers.

Shinar declined to disclose the firm's latest valuation but said it was more than double since its last funding round. Fundbox raised $100 million in 2015 in its series B round.

Including this latest series C round, Fundbox has raised a total of $440 million in equity. This round included Allianz X, Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan, MUFG Innovation Partners, and Arbor Ventures, as well as major existing Fundbox investors including Khosla Ventures, General Catalyst and Spark Capital Growth. The company previously said Bezos Expeditions, the personal investment arm of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, was an investor.

The firm did not disclose the lender behind its credit line.

“The U.S. is at a tipping point for B2B digital payments,” said Melissa Guzy, Arbor Ventures managing partner. The pace of change in business transactions has been much faster in Asia than the United States in part due to companies like e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding and relative scarcity of credit cards.

Fundbox found in a recent study that over $3 trillion was owed to U.S. companies, held as accounts receivable, Shinar said. While so far there are few competitors in his space, he expected to see competition in the future from credit card companies and PayPal as well. (Reporting By Jane Lanhee Lee; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

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