Korean financial super app Toss closes $405 million Series G as valuation grows 7% TechCrunch
Viva Republica, Korean financial super app operator Tosscompleted a $405 million Series G funding and said it is now valued at 9.1 trillion won ($7 billion), up from 8.5 trillion won in June 2021, when can be mobilized $410 million in Series F pre-funding at Valuation of $7.4 billion (8.5 trillion won). (Korea’s currency has depreciated against the dollar this year.)
The company’s recent funding has caught our attention, including that it signals that the company is doing relatively well amid a bleak macroeconomic outlook. Indeed, not like global fintech companyinclude Klarna, Stripesand Checkout.comwhich had suffered a pretty steep drop in valuation in 2022, Viva Republica has boosted its valuation again.
Viva Republica also had a massive recruitment drive in October, in stark contrast to many global technology companyinclude fintech startups, has conducted major layoffs this year. As of August, the Seoul-based company has about 1,900 employees.
Fintech-focused investor Tonic Private Equity led the Series G round along with returning backers, including Korea Development Bank (KDB), Altos Ventures, Goodwater Capital, Greyhound Capital, Aspex Management, Bond Capital and DUMAC. Korea Investment & Securities also joined the latest funding. The fintech company said it completed the first and second closures of Series G, about $226 million (295.8 billion won) and $175.8 million (229.3 billion won) respectively. third quarter of 2022 and the third closing of the new grant in November.
Viva Republica CEO Hyunwoo Seo tells TechCrunch “profitability” is now key and just as important as growth, especially in these extremely difficult market conditions. (Profitability would also greatly help in allowing the company — which is eyeing a potential IPO in the near future — to do this successfully.)
To that end, Toss plans to use the proceeds from its latest fundraising to invest in its products, which include digital lending and online payments for individuals. local people and traders.
The new capital will also help Toss accelerate growth for challenging banks throw the bank— launched last year by Viva Republica — and a retail investment app like Robinhood, toss securitiesboth look set to turn a profit next year, according to Seo.
The company said Toss Securities has started to turn around in Q3 2022. Besides, Toss Bank’s registered users have increased fivefold to 5 million from 1.1 million since its launch in October. 12 year 2021.
When asked about listing plans, Seo declined to comment on his exact IPO schedule, but according to previous media reports, Viva Republica aims to list shares in the next four years after increasing sales. revenue in 2025.
Founded by dentist turned entrepreneur Seung-gun Lee, CEO of Viva Republica, the company started as a money transfer app, Toss, in 2015. Toss joined the unicorn club with an $80 million endowment at a $1.2 billion valuation in 2018.
Since then, it has become a financial super app by adding more features like banking, P2P lending, mobile based. Stock trading and investment, insurance, credit scoring services, etc. Most recently, Toss launched its buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) service in March, which claims to have attracted over 1 million registered users. . Korea’s BNLP Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) is expected to increase about 36.6 billion USD by 2028up from $5.6 billion in 2021, as fintech and e-commerce companies use BNPL as one of their marketing tools.
In fact, Viva Republica claims it has the largest market share of fintech super apps in the country in terms of monthly active users (MAUs), with 24 million registered users for Toss and 14 MAUs as of August this year.
Viva Republica continues to push acquisitions. Launch launch Payment Toss, which allows local merchants to accept digital payments, two years ago by acquiring the payment gateway business from LG’s mobile network company LG U+. (Toss Payments monthly transaction volume surpassed $2.7 billion in November.) Toss also took over Merchant Korea, a mobile virtual network (MVNO) operator, in July this year, which has plans to provide wireless communication services to consumers by 2023. The latest acquisition comes about eight months after it bought a 60% stake in VCNC, operator of South Korean ride-hailing platform Tada, wholly owned by car-sharing platform SoCar, in October 2021 to enter the mobile market.
In terms of international growth strategy, Viva Republica may invest equity in global companies, including Southeast Asia, after joining Vietnam in 2019. However, it is now more likely that Viva Republica will focus on its domestic business, Seo noted.
Viva Republica with Toss Securities, Toss Payments and Toss Insurance is expected to post sales of around 1 trillion won ($767 million) next year, according to the company.