Yonder, a London-based fintech startup, announced that it has raised a £20M seed round ahead of its launch in the UK. The round was co-led by Northzone and LocalGlobe, with Seedcamp participating alongside a host of angels, including Sharmadean Reid, Marshmallow founders Oliver and Alex Kent-Braham, and Rio Ferdinand.
The announcement comes one year after raising £850k in a pre-seeding round in February 2021 led by Seedcamp and LocalGlobe. To date, the company has raised a total funding of £20.85M.
“The new funds will enable us to grow our team and build an incredible selection of rewards and features. We’re thrilled to have the backing of investors with such a strong track record in propelling consumer fintech to success,” says Yonder’s CEO and co-founder, Tim Chong.
What does Yonder solve?
Yonder was born of Tim Chong’s (ClearScore alumni) frustration with the struggle of accessing a quality credit provider as an Australian in London – despite a successful career and excellent credit score back home. Further, he found countless customers were underwhelmed by the options available.
The market size for ‘credit invisible‘ customers, who are underserved by current credit providers, stands at 5M people across the UK. As a result, Tim Chong founded Yonder to restore consumers’ confidence in credit, eliminating stress and complexity from the customer experience.
“For too long, credit cards have taken advantage of consumers. Hidden fees, discriminatory credit scoring, and rewards that belong in the 1990s, all in the interest of bank’s quarterly earnings,” says Chong. “We’re challenging the status quo with a beautiful card that helps our members to discover the best of their city, and a promise to put the customer first.”
Rewards programme designed around people’s lifestyles
Founded by ClearScore alumni Tim Chong, Theso Jivajirajah, and Harry Jell in 2021, Yonder offers a rewards programme that’s designed around real people’s lifestyles, after hundreds of user research sessions with Londoners from around the globe.
Yonder’s credit card will provide members with access to exclusive drinking, dining, and leisure experiences with partners, including The Gladwin Brothers and Kricket restaurants, plus the ability to spend abroad with zero FX fees.
Yonder evaluates credit suitability based on transaction data, using open banking to build a more nuanced, personalised picture of its customers’ spending habits.
Yonder is authorised and regulated by the FCA and is available on iOS and Android
Northzone is an early-stage venture capital fund and has over $1.7B under management. To date, the company has raised nine funds and invested in more than 150 companies, including category-defining businesses like Spotify, iZettle, Avito, Kahoot!, Hopin, Klarna, and Personio.
Jeppe Zink, General Partner at Northzone says “We have seen the rise of a $300bn+ fintech industry, predominantly driven by customers demanding better seamless financial services, and yet a key service has not changed for decades: credit cards. Yonder is creating a modern, digital credit card experience for young professionals that replaces outdated loyalty programmes with a highly curated experience-based membership service. There is an urgent need to redesign the payments industry with the customer at the heart – and Yonder is doing exactly that.”
LocalGlobe is a London-based venture capital firm focused on seed investments, primarily in the UK.
Remus Brett, General Partner at LocalGlobe adds, “Credit has earned a bad rap, with companies benefiting from a huge profit pool while sidelining their customers’ best interests. We’ve been actively looking to invest in credit challengers, and Yonder has all the qualities we look for at LocalGlobe. The team has deep industry expertise, a magnetic consumer brand, and a slick product. Above all, Yonder is a truly mission-driven business – and today, that’s a crucial factor in fintechs’ success.”
Carlos Espinal, Managing Partner at Seedcamp says, “Credit and credit products do much more than simply allow people to buy things, increasingly, they can be the conduit to showcase what you want to support, and how you want to live your life. We backed the team at Yonder because they have a vision for how credit products need to evolve from where they are today, catering to the few and well established, rather than enabling a new generation of customer to live life and experience the best of what their local community has to offer.”