Brazilian neo bank Neon Pagamentos has secured a Series C investment of $300 million led by General Atlantic.
New investors participating in the round include funds and accounts managed by BlackRock, as well as Vulcan Capital, PayPal Ventures, and Endeavor Catalyst, in addition to former investors Monashees and Flourish Ventures. BBVA also participated via existing shareholder Propel Venture Partners. The investment will be split between two tranches of $150 million each.
Founded in 2016, Neon launched with a simple digital account and has since expanded its product suite to include investment products, credit cards, and personal loans, among other new offerings and features. It has expanded its initial focus on consumer clients to also serve small businesses, accelerated by its acquisition of MEI Fácil in 2019. Most recently, in July 2020, Neon acquired one of Brazil’s first brokerage platforms, Magliano Invest, in order to offer new investment products.
The company currently claims 9.4 million account holders and around 1 million micro-entrepreneurs through MEI Fácil, which provides tax and payments products. It has seen a surge in deposits, investments, and online purchases, as well as an uptick of 26% in new users since March as the global pandemic took hold.
Neon says the cash will be used to support hiring, scale its loans business, and to pursue strategic M&A opportunities.
“Brazilian banking penetration is relatively high for Latin America but still lags developed market peers, with a significant under-banked population that traditional banks have generally overlooked. Neon is focused specifically on providing access to this group and bringing them into the financial world,” says Jean Sigrist, President of Neon. “This new financing enables us to continue our mission of serving even more clients with an increasingly robust offering.”
This is the company’s third funding round to date. It raised a $22 million Series A in May 2018 from Propel Venture Partners, Monashees, Quona Capital, and Omidyar Network, later spun-off as Flourish Ventures, followed by its November 2019 Series B financing of $92 million co-led by General Atlantic and Banco Votorantim, Neon’s banking partner.