U.S. fintech Upgrade raises $280 million at $6 billion valuation
U.S. fintech Upgrade, a company that offers affordable and responsible credit and mobile banking to mainstream consumers, has announced it has raised a $280 million Series F round at a $6 billion pre-money valuation. The round was led by Coatue Management and DST Global. Dragoneer Investment Group and existing investors including Gopher Asset Management, G-Squared, Koch Disruptive Technologies, Old Well Partners, Ribbit Capital, Sands Capital, Ventura Capital and Vy Capital also participated in the round.
“We are thrilled to partner with DST, Coatue and Dragoneer,” said Renaud Laplanche, Co-Founder and CEO of Upgrade. “This new round comes just four months after our Series E and demonstrates Upgrade’s rapid growth and commitment to delivering innovative financial products that benefit consumers”.
Upgrade was recognized as the fastest growing company in the Americas by the Financial Times earlier this year, and Upgrade Card was recently recognized by Nilson Report as the fastest growing credit card in America, marking the first time a fintech company has appeared among the top 50 US credit card issuers.
Upgrade Card promotes responsible credit by turning every balance into a fixed-rate installment plan, and by paying rewards to cardholders as they pay down their balance.
“Upgrade is an exciting example of a credit-led neobank,” said Philippe Laffont, Founder and CEO of Coatue Management. “Credit is a key component of banking and has been a major source of revenue for banks. We are excited by Upgrade’s innovative credit products that we believe can help the company capture a significant share of the mobile banking market“.
Upgrade has delivered over $10 billion in affordable credit to consumers through cards and loans since inception in 2017 and is on track to deliver $8 billion in 2021 alone. Upgrade debuted a Rewards Checking account earlier this year that offers 2% cash back debit card rewards to consumers on common everyday expenses. The company also recently launched Upgrade Bitcoin Rewards Card, a credit card that pays rewards in bitcoin rather than cash, allowing consumers to enjoy the potential upside of bitcoin without putting their own money at risk upfront.