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Australian fintech raises $3 million

Australian fintech raises $3 million

(9 August 2016 – Australia) Fintech startup Bigstone has announced a capital raising round of A$3 million, with the funds coming from a range of investors to grow its small business lending marketplace and offer an alternative to major lenders.

The seed funding round is the first capital raised by the startup, which connects small businesses wanting to borrow up to A$250,000 with non-bank lenders.

Major investors in the round include ASX-listed diversified investments and venture capital firm CVC, the founders of Bangkok-based fund Lighthouse Venture Partners Paniti Junhasavasdikul and Narith Phadungchai, in addition to private investors.

Bigstone co-founder and chief executive Boyd Pederson said: "Our aspirations are high, but we have to prove that we can underwrite loans first ... so the focus is on marketing, hiring people ... expanding our reach and growing into advisory channels. For the next 12 months we expect to be building the bulk of the business here.”

"We have aspirations to grow this business beyond Australia [to south-east Asia]. The working capital funding gap for small businesses amounts to A$2.4 trillion worldwide and that's growing."

Although the firm has only been in operation since June, it says it has received around A$6 million in loan requests thus far.

Bigstone adds that it is targeting to lend A$10 million to more than 200 small businesses by the end of 2016.

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