Category: 500 startups

Flat.mx raises $20M from VCs, proptech unicorn founders to fix Mexico’s ‘broken’ real estate market



Flat.mx, which wants to build a real estate “super app” for Latin America, has closed on a $20 million Series A round of funding.

Anthemis and 500 Startups co-led the investment, which included participation from ALLVP and Expa. Previously, Flat.mx had raised a total $10 million in equity and $25 million in debt. Other backers include Opendoor CEO and CEO and co-founder Eric Wu, Flyhomes’ co-founder and CEO Tushar Garg and Divvy Homes’ co-founder Brian Ma.

Founded in July 2019, Mexico City-based Flat.mx started out with a model similar to that of Opendoor, buying properties, renovating them and then reselling them. That September, the proptech startup had raised one of Mexico’s largest pre-seed rounds to take the Opendoor real estate marketplace model across the Rio Grande.

“The real estate market in Mexico is broken,” said co-founder Bernardo Cordero. “One of the biggest problems is that it takes sellers anywhere from 6 months to 2 years to sell. So we launched the most radical solution we could find to this problem: an instant offer. This product allows homeowners to sell in days instead of months, a fast and convenient experience they can’t find anywhere else.”

Building an instant buyer (ibuyer) in Mexico — and Latin America in general — is a complex endeavor. Unlike in the U.S., Mexico doesn’t have a Multiple Listing Service (MLS). As such, pricing data is not readily available. On top of that, agents are (Read more...)

Canopy raises $15M Series A after posting 4.5x customer growth in H1 2021



Canopy Servicing announced this morning it recently closed a $15 million Series A. The startup sells software to fintechs and others, allowing customers to create loan programs and service the resulting products.

The company raised a $3.5 million seed round in 2020. Canaan led its Series A, with participation from Homebrew, Foundation and BoxGroup, among others. Per Canopy, its valuation grew by 5x from its seed round to its Series A.

The company has raised $18.5 million to date.

So far this reads much like any other post announcing a new startup funding round, kicking off with an array of information concerning the round and who chipped into the transaction. Next, we’d probably note the competitors, growth and what investors in the company in question have to say about their recent purchase. This morning, however, I want to riff a bit on the future of fintech and how the financial tech stack of the future may be built.

TechCrunch chatted with Canopy CEO Matt Bivons last week. He has an interesting take on where fintech is headed. Let’s discuss it and work through what Canopy does.

Canopy

As with many startups, Canopy was built to scratch an itch. Bivons had run into issues regarding loan servicing in prior jobs. He went on to found a startup that aimed to build a student credit card. But after working on that project, Bivons and co-founder Will Hanson pivoted the company to a B2B-focused concern building loan servicing technology.

Behind the decision was (Read more...)

Una Brands launches with $40M to roll up brands on multiple Asia-Pacific e-commerce platforms



Una Brands' co-founders (from left to right): Tobias Heusch, Kiran Tanna and Kushal Patel

Una Brands’ co-founders (from left to right): Tobias Heusch, Kiren Tanna and Kushal Patel. Una Brands Una Brands

One of the biggest funding trends of the past year is companies that consolidate small e-commerce brands. Many of the most notable startups in the space, like Thrasio, Berlin Brands Group and Branded Group, focus on consolidating Amazon Marketplace sellers. But the e-commerce landscape is more fragmented in the Asia-Pacific region, where sellers use platforms like Tokopedia, Lazada, Shopee, Rakuten or eBay, depending on where they are. That is where Una Brands comes in. Co-founder Kiren Tanna, former chief executive officer of Rocket Internet Asia, said the startup is “platform agnostic,” searching across marketplaces (and platforms like Shopify, Magento or WooCommerce) for potential acquisitions.

Una announced today that it has raised a $40 million equity and debt round. Investors include 500 Startups, Kingsway Capital, 468 Capital, Presight Capital, Global Founders Capital and Maximilian Bitner, the former CEO of Lazada who currently holds the same role at secondhand fashion platform Vestiaire Collective.

Una did not disclose the ratio of equity and debt in the round. Like many other e-commerce aggregators, including Thrasio, Una raised debt financing to buy brands because it is non-dilutive. The round will also be used to hire aggressively in order to evaluate brands in its pipeline. Una currently has teams in Singapore, Malaysia and Australia and plans to expand in Southeast Asia before entering (Read more...)