BankTech

Online lending platform Upgrade raises $105M Series E

Upgrade, an online lending platform launched by Renaud Laplanche of LendingClub, has announced raising a $105 million Series E led by Koch Disruptive Technologies, according to a press release.

The company, which now is valued at a staggering $3.3 billion, says it will use the capital to continue establishing their Upgrade Card and further product innovation and design. BRV and Ventura Capital also participated in the funding.

Founded in 2017, online-based Upgrade focuses on credit-products, offering users personal loans, digital reward checking accounts and its new Upgrade Card. The Upgrade reward checking account, which debuted this year, offers 2% cashback on all purchases. Its Upgrade Bitcoin Rewards Card has made waves by rewarding users in bitcoin instead of cash.

The company has already delivered $7 billion in credit to consumers and loans since its founding, but has increased its usage considerably and expects to deliver another $7 billion in 2021 alone.

“We are thrilled to partner with KDT. We have experienced unprecedented growth and profitability this year, and the additional capital will enable us to further establish Upgrade Card as a mainstream credit card and continue designing innovative products that benefit consumers,” Upgrade CEO and co-founder Renaud Laplanche stated in the release.

When it started out with its original loan products, Upgrade was able to quickly scale its revenue base, which eliminated the need for huge funding rounds, according to TechCrunch.

Now it is introducing further banking features and building out into other financial service sectors, which explains the need for the company to bring in external investments to keep product research and development moving.

Upgrade’s $307 million in total funding still isn’t much when you look at the $3.3 billion valuation, showing the company is really making the most of its money in the eyes of investors.

In the wake of the BNPL movement and consumer demand for transparent, low-rate credit lines, Upgrade’s online focused services are positioned to promote growth and make the company a key player in the US loan ecosystem moving forward.

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