Lydia coins it in

Darren Sinden

French Fintech start-up Lydia has extended its Series B financing round assisted by lead investor Accel, the same investors who were so prominent in the recent Series C fundraising by commission-free trading app Public. The original Series B round for Lydia raised an impressive $45 million back in January but will now reopen and look […]

Gold price

French Fintech start-up Lydia has extended its Series B financing round assisted by lead investor Accel, the same investors who were so prominent in the recent Series C fundraising by commission-free trading app Public.

The original Series B round for Lydia raised an impressive $45 million back in January but will now reopen and look to raise another $86 million.

Given that all current major investors in Lydia are set to participate alongside Accel they are extremely likely to secure the additional funds. To bring their total series B fundraise up to $131 million.

Lydia is named after the ancient Mediterranean kingdom credited with the invention of money in a form that was standardized and backed by the state. The phrase rich as Croesus originates from Lydia and Croesus was king of the Lydians for 14 very prosperous years.

The modern namesake to the inventors of money are doing very nicely for themselves and their businesses well and though Lydia’s co-founder Cyril Chiche wouldn’t be drawn on the valuation of the company following the additional fundraising. He was quoted as saying that: “The value of the company has really significantly increased between the two parts of the B round,”

Following the funding round Amit Jhawar the lead for Accel’s investment in Lydia will join the board of the company. Mr Jhawar joined Accel as a partner in July prior to which he had served as COO and CFO of payments firm Braintree. Braintree, of course, acquired Venmo and was itself acquired by PayPal.

Lydia bills itself as the super app for money offering social and contactless payments, instant loans, savings and chequing accounts to its users.

The app provides customers with a fully customisable interface through which they can manage their finances and accounts. There are realtime alerts for transactions, loans of up to €3000 can be authorised in a minute, and bank transfers can be made instantaneously at no cost to the user.

Lydia’s mission statement is to “bring more with less” and the company aims to remove complexity from financial transactions whilst at the same time speeding up the process.

Among Lydia’s roster of investors is China’s Tencent owner of WeChat Pay one of the worlds largest payment ecosystems.

According to Lydia’s blog, the extension to the funding round was arranged and negotiated within 2 months of Amit Jhawar joining Accel and participating in a video call between the two groups on July second.

The immediacy of Jhawar’s and Accel’s interest may have been sparked by a 2014 article by French journalist Romain Dillet which was headlined “Lydia Is A Fee-Free Payment App That’s Like Venmo For France”.

Lydia has become more than just a payments app it seems to have evolved into a money management tool and a conduit. By for example creating virtual debit cards that work with Apple and Google pay apps and through the creation of sub-accounts in which users can compartmentalise money into several savings pots access to which can be shared socially.

Perhaps Lydia is reinventing money all over again.

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