Stripe backs Monzo again as digital-only bank becomes a tech unicorn

Monzo obtained passporting rights to operate in the Republic earlier this year

Monzo has nearly 800,000 active customers and employs about 300 people. It is reportedly eyeing a move into other European markets and into the US

Monzo has nearly 800,000 active customers and employs about 300 people. It is reportedly eyeing a move into other European markets and into the US

 

Monzo, a UK-headquartered digital-only bank whose backers include Stripe, has officially become a so-called “tech unicorn” after securing £85 million (€96.5 million) in funding.

A unicorn is a term used to describe privately held start-ups that have achieved a valuation of over $1 billion.

The latest fundraise for Monzo, which earlier this year obtained passporting permission to allow it operate in the Republic, values the company at £1 billion.

The funding round was led by General Catalyst, alongside Accel and with other existing investors such as Stripe also taking part.

The bank, which previously led a record-beating crowdfunding round in which it raised £1 million in 96 seconds, is gearing up for another much larger Crowdcube campaign later this year.

Monzo has nearly 800,000 active customers and employs about 300 people. It is reportedly eyeing a move into other European markets, and into the US.

The company, which received its full banking licence in April 2017 ,received passporting approval from the Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) in February although it said at that time it had no intention to open an office in Dublin.

Pre-tax losses

Monzo reported pre-tax losses of £33.1 million for the 12 months to the end of February, up from £7.9 million a year earlier.

As of August 2018 there were more than 260 unicorns around the world with Uber topping the list with a $73 billion valuation, according to CB Insights.

Stripe, the online payments company founded by Limerick-born brothers Patrick and John Collison, is ranked eighth most valuable unicorn overall with a $20 billion valuation after it raised $245 million in a new funding round that closed in September.

Irish-founded tech firm Intercom also has unicorn status having raised $125 million in late March in a move that took its valuation to $1.275 billion.