Fidel, a UK-based startup that gives developers access to real-time transaction data from the big card schemes via an API, has raised $18 million in a Series A funding round joined by Citi Ventures and Royal Bank of Canada.
The round was co-led by US-based fintech specialist funds Nyca Partners and QED Investors and joined by the likes of 500 Startups and Transferwise founder Taavet Hinrikus.
Fidel makes it easy for developers to build applications that connect directly to consenting users’ debit or credit cards. Its API provides access to real-time payment data from the three major card networks - Visa, Amex and MasterCard - through a single integration point.
The technology also promises to take care of compliance requirements by using technology that anonymises card numbers so developers can avoid handling sensitive card data directly.
Royal Bank of Canada is already a Fidel client, alongside other big brands such as Klarna and British Airways which uses the tech to let its Executive Club members earn Avios points automatically when they shop with linked credit or debit cards at participating retailers.
The new funding will be used to build out the Fidel team and support international expansion in North America, the Nordics and Apac as the startup bids to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Plaid, which has hit unicorn status with a similar API-based approach to bank account data.
Hans Morris, managing partner at Nyca Partners and former president of Visa, who joins the Fidel board, says: "Fidel provides a completely original approach for fintech innovators to create new products by opening up access to the world’s three largest payment networks.
"This company has seen very impressive traction and customer adoption, and we think is poised to be a breakout fintech success story."