Financial service API developer Sila raises $13M Series A

Sila, a Portland-based platform that offers financial service infrastructure APIs, announced raising a $13 million Series A led by Revolution Ventures, according to a press release.

The company says it will use the funding to scale its team, target additional partners, further financial technology development and bring new services to market.

Founded in 2018, Sila’s API services enable companies to more easily integrate with legacy financial institutions and incorporate regulatory compliant payment capabilities through blockchain technology. The platform has built-in Know Your Customer (KYC) and Know Your Business (KYB) capabilities and allows organizations to verify and legitimize customer identities and funding.

Existing investors Madrona Venture Group, Oregon Venture Fund, Mucker Capital and angel investors including Taavet Hinrikus, co-founder and Chairman of Wise, also participated in the round.

The Series A brings Sila’s total funding to over $20 million, following a $7.7 million seed round in January 2020. The company also previously raised money via a 2019 convertible note and a 2018 pre-seed round.

“Sila’s mission has always been to make money programmable. Access to the U.S. banking system, especially for innovators and entrepreneurs, is extremely complex and prohibitive. The Sila Money API platform provides easy, scalable, and compliant money storage and money transfer,” Sila co-founder and CEO Shamir Karkal stated in the release.

In addition to its core payment and account transfer API service, the company offers its own Ethereum-enabled stablecoin, SILAUSD. The digital currency is linked to the U.S. penny, allows 24/7 transfers and enables interoperability between FedWire and Nacha Automated Clearing House (ACH) networks.

Karkal says the idea for Sila came from obstacles he encountered while working on his previous venture, Simple, an app that unified various bank accounts into one card and was acquired by BBVA for $117 in 2014, according to TechCrunch.

“The problem with working with banks, is that you have to figure out how to integrate with their mainframe. In the process, you end up having to also be compliance experts just to be able to do it,” he told TechCrunch.

The platform is designed to reduce the time and money businesses spend on compliance, with Karkal claiming Sila can have customers integrated for payments, running their own digital wallets and regulation-compliant in under eight weeks.

In other recent fintech news, buy now, pay later (BNPL) giant Klarna followed its $639 million equity funding round in June with an acquisition of German shopping app Stocard for $133 million. Canadian integrated payments software provider Paystone also raised $23.8 million from Crédit Mutuel Equity, with plans to use the funding to further expansion efforts in the US.

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