Nubank is the world’s most highly valued challenger bank after raising $400 million at a $25 billion valuation

Nubank is the world's most highly valued challenger bank after raising $400 million at a $25 billion valuation thumbnail
  • Brazilian challenger bank Nubank has raised $400 million.
  • It’s now among the most well-funded startups in South America, and worth $25 billion.
  • “It’s good to see our momentum continuing but we’re still focusing on growth ahead,” CEO David Velez, said.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Brazilian challenger banking startup Nubank has raised a $400 million Series G funding round in another mega-deal for the burgeoning fintech sector.

The round is one of the largest financings in 2021 so far, with the company now claiming to be the most valuable banking startup in the world. 

The company’s valuation has gone from $10 billion at its last funding round in 2019 to $25 billion.

Nubank now has 34 million customers across Brazil and its new markets of Mexico and Colombia. 

“It’s great to be in a leadership position, it’s super exciting,” David Velez, Nubank’s CEO, told Insider. “It’s good to see our momentum continuing but we’re still focusing on growth ahead.” 

Sao Paolo-based Nubank, founded in 2013, has raised $1.8 billion to date and is one of the most valuable and well-funded private tech startups in the world.

This fresh funding was led by new investors GIC, Whale Rock and Invesco. Current Nubank investors Sequoia, Tencent, Dragoneer, and Ribbit also participated in the round. 

“We were not planning to raise more money, given our business in Brazil pays for itself,” Velez added. “But this is a great market and a good opportunity to raise capital with low dilution. It allows us to take full advantage of the Colombia and Mexico opportunity.”

The challenger bank initially looked to bring in $300 million but ended up taking $400 million. Demand was high from investors across the world, Velez said. 

Banking is an often bureaucratic and paperwork-heavy process in South America’s largest country, with many state banks deemed unfriendly places to visit with armed guards and intense security. Velez has previously talked of the painful experience of banking in Brazil, including being stuck in bulletproof revolving doors in Sao Paolo. 

Fintech has been booming in the past 12 months while public markets have also seen staggering valuations. When asked whether a public listing was next on the agenda, Velez said: “I want to push back a bit on an IPO. We have investors with a long-term orientation and it’s never been brought up in a board meeting.

“We’re not rushing towards it. I personally like being CEO of a private company because it allows us to focus on the long term.”

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