Hong Kong fintech WeLab is to expand into the wealth management market after securing a $75 million funding round led by the venture arm of German conglomerate Allianz X.
Since inception in 2013, WeLab has raised more than $600 million of strategic financing, growing its business across Hong Kong, Mainland China, and Indonesia. The company, which was one the first to secure a digital banking licence in Hong Kong, claims close to 50 million individual users and over 600 enterprise customers.
As part of the new financing, WeLab Bank intends to enter the digital wealth management and insurance market through a working alliance with Allianz Global Investors.
The plan is to roll out initially to new digital customers in Hong Kong and later to the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area (GBA), through Wealth Management Connect.
Desmond Ng, head of Asia Pacific at AllianzGI, states: “Asia is home to some of the most dynamic wealth management and banking markets of the world. Hong Kong, in particular, is a significant market for us. With the second-highest bank deposits per capita in the world, it is a very attractive wealth management market. The potential strategic cooperation with WeLab presents an exciting opportunity for Allianz Global Investors as an integral part of our growth strategy in Asia.”
Simon Loong, founder & group CEO of WeLab, says the firm will hire 100 new staff as the company scales up to enter new markets.
“We see this as a first-in-market four-way partnership where there are abundant synergies between WeLab, as a fintech leader and a pioneer in digital banking, and Allianz, as a global insurer and asset manager," he says. "We look forward to expanding WeLab’s geographical presence and bringing our technology into these new markets with Allianz."