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GoCardless Joins Tech Unicorns as It Secures USD312 Million to Accelerate Growth in Open Banking

GoCardless, a leading fintech in direct bank payment solutions, announced that it has secured a Series G funding round of USD312 million, making it the latest European and UK tech unicorn at a valuation of USD2.1 billion.

The investment is led by Permira, which brings significant experience in backing best-in-class payments and financial software businesses including Klarna, Clearwater Analytics and Carta. New investor BlackRock Private Equity Partners also joined the round. The funding will allow GoCardless to accelerate its growing footprint in the open banking space through both product and geographical expansion as it targets becoming the world’s leading network for direct bank payments.

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GoCardless processes more than $25bn in transactions per year and serves over 70,000 businesses around the world, including DocuSign, Klarna, TripAdvisor and Epson. Since its last funding round in December 2020, the company’s valuation has more than doubled, while headcount has grown by 85%. GoCardless accelerated its investment in open banking product development and launched Instant Bank Pay, a new way to collect one-off bank-to-bank payments using open banking. Since then, it has already helped thousands of merchants in the UK and Europe process millions of dollars’ worth of one-time payments.

Klarna recently selected GoCardless to offer bank debit payments to its over 21 million customers in the US, leveraging GoCardless’ expertise in account-to-account payments as it expands in the market. In addition, PayPal and GoCardless have signed a strategic agreement which will see GoCardless become a direct debit partner for PayPal. PayPal enterprise merchants will soon have the ability to offer their customers additional bank payment options as consumers increasingly seek choice at checkout.

Hiroki Takeuchi, co-founder and CEO of GoCardless, said: “The rise of open banking presents a once-in-a-generation shift, one that will change the way payments happen all over the world. I am delighted to have partners like Permira and BlackRock Private Equity Partners on board, with their global footprint and strong expertise in tech, to support us in building a direct bank payment network that lets payments flow freely, without cards, expiration dates or extra costs. I look forward to working with them and our new board members to accelerate the future development of GoCardless.”

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Alberto Riva, Principal at Permira, added: “We believe GoCardless is uniquely positioned to become a global champion in account-to-account payments through leveraging open banking. We are thrilled to back Hiroki and his excellent team to continue innovating and offering best-in-class solutions that are cheaper, faster and a more secure way of collecting payments globally.”

With the round, GoCardless will also add further technology and payments expertise to its Board of Directors with Michael Rouse, former Chief Commercial Officer at Klarna, joining, and Koen Köppen, Chief Technology Officer at Klarna and Board Member of Mollie, joining as an independent director.

As GoCardless builds on its decade-long experience in direct bank payments, the company will broaden its focus to enable both recurring and one-time payments, and continue its international expansion. It will also open its ‘bank pay’ network to other payment service providers who want to tap into its technology and platform.

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[To share your insights with us, please write to sghosh@martechseries.com]

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