Category: stock trading

Shares is a new stock trading app with a focus on social features



Meet Shares, a new European startup that wants to add a social twist to financial investment — in that case, the company means ‘social’ as in ‘social network’. The startup has been developing its product under the radar for a few months already. It is also moving at a fast pace. It has assembled a team of 35 people and raised $10 million in a pre-product seed round.

Shares sent me a few details about what you should expect from the trading platform and why it’s different from what’s out there. Essentially, the startup combines two important trends.

First, stock trading has been moving to mobile and a few tech companies have been working on well-designed trading platforms to appeal to a new set of users. That shift is well underway in the U.S. as Robinhood has managed to attract tens of millions of users.

In Europe, it’s been a different story as the European market is still fragmented with a handful of stock-trading apps slowly expanding to new markets. Those companies include Freetrade, Trade Republic, Bitpanda and, to a certain degree, Revolut.

The second big investment trend of the past couple of years is that investment has become a social activity. Evidence of this lies in the GameStop short squeeze that occurred back in January 2021. In other words, people like to talk about stocks on Reddit, Discord, Telegram groups and more.

With Shares, users will be able (Read more...)

Gotrade gets $7M led by LocalGlobe to let investors around the world buy fractional shares of U.S. stocks



Stock in many American companies, like Amazon, Alphabet or Tesla, can host hundreds or thousands of dollars per share. Fractional trading, or buying part of a single share through a brokerage, makes them more accessible—at least to people within the United States. Investors in other countries, however, often have to pay high fees through interactive brokers. Gotrade makes fractional trading of U.S. stocks available to people in 150 countries, and charges a minimum of just one dollar.

The Singapore-based startup announced it has raised $7 million in seed funding led by LocalGlobe, with participation from Social Leverage, Y Combinator, Picus Capital and Raptor Group. The round also included angel investors like Matt Robinson, co-founder of GoCardless; Carlos Gonzalez-Cadenas, former chief product officer of Skyscanner; Frank Strauss, former head of Deutsche Bank’s global digital business; and Joel Yarbrough, Asia-Pacific head at Rapyd.

GoTrade was founded in 2019 by David Grant, Norman Wanto and Rohit Mulani. Its app launched three months ago and is currently invite-only. Gotrade claims sign-ups have grown 20% week-on-week, and it now has more than 100,000 users spread across the world. About 65% of Gotrade’s users have traded stocks before, while the rest are first-time investors.

Mulani, the company’s chief executive officer, told TechCrunch that the idea for Gotrade was planted when he became interested in American stocks, but discovered many barriers to trading.

“When I was 18, I actually looked to get access in Singapore, and banks were charging $30 per trade. Effectively, the market taught me (Read more...)

Gotrade gets $7M led by LocalGlobe to let investors around the world buy fractional shares of U.S. stocks



Stock in many American companies, like Amazon, Alphabet or Tesla, can host hundreds or thousands of dollars per share. Fractional trading, or buying part of a single share through a brokerage, makes them more accessible—at least to people within the United States. Investors in other countries, however, often have to pay high fees through interactive brokers. Gotrade makes fractional trading of U.S. stocks available to people in 150 countries, and charges a minimum of just one dollar.

The Singapore-based startup announced it has raised $7 million in seed funding led by LocalGlobe, with participation from Social Leverage, Y Combinator, Picus Capital and Raptor Group. The round also included angel investors like Matt Robinson, co-founder of GoCardless; Carlos Gonzalez-Cadenas, former chief product officer of Skyscanner; Frank Strauss, former head of Deutsche Bank’s global digital business; and Joel Yarbrough, Asia-Pacific head at Rapyd.

GoTrade was founded in 2019 by David Grant, Norman Wanto and Rohit Mulani. Its app launched three months ago and is currently invite-only. Gotrade claims sign-ups have grown 20% week-on-week, and it now has more than 100,000 users spread across the world. About 65% of Gotrade’s users have traded stocks before, while the rest are first-time investors.

Mulani, the company’s chief executive officer, told TechCrunch that the idea for Gotrade was planted when he became interested in American stocks, but discovered many barriers to trading.

“When I was 18, I actually looked to get access in Singapore, and banks were charging $30 per trade. Effectively, the market taught me (Read more...)

Lightyear is a new stock trading app from early Wise employees



Meet Lightyear, a new London-based startup coming out of stealth today. The company is building a stock trading app with a focus on creating a truly commission-free app. In addition to waving account fees and trading fees, Lightyear doesn’t charge foreign exchange fees either — up to a certain point.

The two founders met when they were working at Wise — then known as TransferWise. That’s why it makes sense that Lightyear wants to stand out from the crowd with lower foreign exchange fees.

Martin Sokk, co-founder and CEO of Lightyear, worked at Wise between 2012 and 2017. He has held various roles, such as head of product, head of people and head of operations. Mihkel Aamer, Lightyear’s other co-founder and CTO, was an engineering lead at Wise between 2013 and 2019.

“Having spent my career in financial services, I’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly. I believe retail investing in Europe is still very much ‘the ugly’ — we’re talking about sneaky fees, less access and complicated products remaining as the status quo,” Martin Sokk said in a statement. “We’re building something that will change that by opening up investing up to everyone, whichever global market they want to invest in and however much they want to invest.”

As a user, you can expect a mobile app that lets you buy and sell shares and ETFs. There will be 1,500 stocks and ETFs from multiple markets at launch. Customers won’t pay any account fees, (Read more...)

Robinhood files confidentially to go public



Today Bloomberg reported, and Axios confirmed that Robinhood has filed privately to go public. The well-financed Robinhood is an American fintech company that provides zero-cost trading services to consumers.

Private IPO filings have become common in recent quarters, making Robinhood’s decision to file behind closed doors before showing its numbers to the public unsurprising. That it has filed privately, however, implies that the company is closer to a public debut than we might have anticipated.

Robinhood has long been expected to have a 2021 IPO in its plans. The company has not yet responded to an inquiry from TechCrunch regarding the news of its private IPO filing.

There are several reasons why Robinhood may be interested in a near-term public debut, despite running into controversies in recent quarters. No amount of time in front of Congress, bad PR from a user’s suicide, or settlements with the SEC can change the fact that today’s stock market favors growth, something that the company has in spades. Or that recent IPOs have been rapturously received by public investors as a cohort; it’s a warm time to pursue public-market liquidity.

The company’s revenue expanded greatly in 2020, something that TechCrunch has covered through the lens of Robinhood’s payment for order flow, or PFOF income. The company told Congress that the particular revenue source was the majority of its top line, meaning that PFOF growth is a reasonable comp for the company’s (Read more...)