A London-based credit card company, Yonder, has raised £62.5 million in a Series A round to fuel its expansion. The company offers its customers rewards in the form of experiences at some of the best restaurants in the city. The round consisted of £12.5 million in equity and £50 million in debt and was co-led by Northzone and RTP Global. Other investors included angel investors Joseph Moore and Kunal Shah, as well as existing backers such as Sharmadean Reid, Matt Robinson, and Rio Ferdinand. The company is now valued at over £70 million after the funding.
What is Yonder?
Yonder was founded in 2021 by Tim Chong, Theso Jivajirajah and Harry Jell, three entrepreneurs who saw a gap in the market for a credit card that could empower young professionals to achieve their financial goals. They realised that many traditional lenders were ignoring or rejecting customers who had unconventional income streams, such as freelancers, gig workers, and students. They also noticed that most credit cards offered generic rewards that did not match the lifestyle preferences of their target audience.
That is why they created Yonder, a credit card that uses Open Banking technology to assess credit suitability based on customers’ spending habits, rather than relying on outdated credit scores. This allows Yonder to offer credit to customers who may otherwise struggle to access it, while also providing them with personalised advice and guidance on how to use credit wisely.
Yonder is more than just a credit card. It’s also a lifestyle platform that offers customers a high rate of return on their spending, with points that can be redeemed at selected partners around London. Yonder customers earn 1 point for every £1 they spend, and up to 5 points per £1 at Yonder partners. Each point is worth approximately 2.5p of value, so spending £1000 can earn £25 to spend on a Yonder experience.
Yonder’s rewards programme is designed to reflect the tastes and interests of young professionals, who value quality over quantity, and experiences over things. That’s why Yonder has partnered with some of the best restaurants, bars, and venues in London, such as Kricket, Lina Stores, and BAO. These partners offer exclusive rewards experiences that have been curated by Yonder based on customer feedback and research.
Yonder is also a great credit card for travellers, as it offers no-excess worldwide travel insurance and no spending fees abroad. This means that customers can enjoy peace of mind and save money when they travel overseas, whether it’s for work or leisure. Yonder’s travel insurance covers medical expenses, trip cancellation, baggage loss or damage, and more. And with no spending fees abroad, customers can use their Yonder card anywhere in the world without worrying about hidden charges or exchange rates.
Meet Tim Chong, the founder and CEO of Yonder
Tim has a rich background in product management, digital strategy, and financial inclusion. Before starting Yonder, he was the product lead at ClearScore, a popular credit score platform that serves over 12 million users in four countries. He also has experience as a management consultant at Accenture, where he advised clients on their digital transformation and growth strategies.
Tim believes in building businesses that have a positive impact on society, not just shareholders. He has been involved in several social impact projects in Southeast Asia and Africa, such as Accenture Development Partnerships and Spur Afrika. He also serves as a board member and strategic advisor for Spur Afrika Australia Limited, a community-based NGO that provides holistic care for children in Kibera, Africa’s largest slum.
Tim is a global citizen who has lived and worked in 10 countries across four continents. He has an MBA from London Business School and UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, where he specialized in entrepreneurship, innovation, and venture capital. He also has a bachelor’s degree in business information systems from Monash University.
What is open banking and how does it work?
Open Banking allows third-party providers to access financial data and transactions from banks and other institutions through APIs. This way, consumers can benefit from more choices and better services in the financial sector.
Open Banking enables customers to connect their bank accounts to Yonder, which helps Yonder to give them the right credit limit and offer them tailored rewards based on their preferences. Open Banking also enables Yonder to provide a seamless onboarding process for customers who do not have a UK credit score, such as expats or young professionals who are new to credit.
How Yonder uses open banking to offer personalised credit rewards
Yonder’s credit rewards are based on customers’ spending patterns and preferences, which are analysed using Open Banking data. Customers can choose from a variety of rewards categories, such as travel, dining, entertainment, wellness, and more. Yonder then matches customers with relevant rewards partners, such as airlines, hotels, restaurants, cinemas, gyms, and more.
Customers can earn up to 10% cashback on their spending with Yonder’s rewards partners, which can be redeemed as statement credits or transferred to their bank accounts. Customers can also access exclusive offers and discounts from Yonder’s rewards partners.
Yonder’s vision and future-plans
Yonder’s mission is to transform the credit market for young professionals, encourage responsible use of credit, and help customers to unlock more value from their spending. Yonder’s co-founders have made a conscious effort to build a diverse team, with two non-white co-founders and 50% of staff and 30% of the leadership team being female.
The latest round of funding will enable Yonder to double in size, with plans to finish the year as a team of 35. Yonder plans to use the investment to double its team, expand its credit rewards offering into new verticals, and launch in new UK cities.
Yonder will also extend its funding round to reward its early-stage members through a private crowdfund, going live in April.
This funding round reflects the strong demand for Yonder’s innovative credit rewards offering. Yonder’s mission is to empower its customers to unlock more value from their spending, while also building their credit scores and enjoying greater purchase protection. With the new investment, Yonder is not only disrupting the credit market, but also setting an example for social-first business. Yonder’s latest funding round is a testament to its vision, traction and potential to become a leading player in the UK credit space.
Co-Founder and Yonder CEO Tim Chong says: “Securing this funding is a real achievement in the current climate, and we feel incredibly fortunate to have the backing of investors who believe in Yonder’s vision.
“We’ve built Yonder as a key to the city for young professionals, which encourages responsible use of credit while helping them to unlock more value from their spending. The response so far has proved to us that we’ve built something that consumers really want, and signals a shift in the way consumers want to use and engage with credit. Yonder is a social-first business, so being able to expand to other UK cities and to grow our rewards proposition into other verticals like sport, fitness and theatre as a result of this funding is a huge step, and will mean we can offer our adventurous members more ways to experience more of their city.
“The credit market needs a rebuild, and we firmly believe change happens through intuitive products designed to help customers with their best interests at heart, not just blog posts on a website. This investor support will help us on our journey to completely rebuild consumer relationships with credit and show that Yonder is a company they can trust. We can’t wait for more people to experience credit the way it should be.”
Northzone Partner, Jeppe Zink, added: “We are thrilled to continue to be part of the Yonder journey as young professionals eagerly seek a cutting-edge digital credit card that delivers not only enhanced customer convenience but also genuine relevance. Yonder addresses this need by establishing an exclusive membership club for a community of like-minded individuals. The impressive early engagement metrics are a testament to the exceptional potential Yonder holds.”
Joseph Moore, Founder of Crust Bros, says: “Yonder has designed its rewards program to brilliantly suit both its members’ lifestyles and the needs of their partners like us at Crust Bros. Investing was a no-brainer for me, and I look forward to seeing them grow.”