Cushon, the fintech pension and savings provider, today announces it has closed an overall funding round of £26m to finance rapid expansion and product development plans, following its acquisition of another master trust pension scheme.
Leading the £6m equity raise is renowned fintech venture capitalist, Augmentum Fintech, which also includes Tide, interactive investor and Habito in its portfolio.
A further £20m in credit facility has been committed from AshGrove Capital, a leading independent pan-European specialty lending firm, to ensure Cushon is well positioned for further acquisition and consolidation of other master trust schemes, allowing more savers and investors to benefit from its Net Zero Now pension scheme.
This raise enables the acquisition of Construction First Limited, scheme funder of the Workers Pension Trust (WPT) scheme. WPT is the leading auto-enrolment MT in Northern Ireland where it supports over 5,000 employers and more than 110,000 employees with pension investments of more than £330m.
Cushon acquired the Salvus Master Trust (now Cushon Master Trust) last year and this latest deal brings Cushon’s overall assets under management to £740m and total number of members to over 200,000. This also makes Cushon the 6th largest Master Trust by number of employers managed.
Ben Pollard, CEO of Cushon, said: “Following our entry into the pensions market last year, and launch of the world’s first net zero pension, we’ve been keen to bring our unique technology-led proposition to as many employees as we can, as quickly as we can. This raise has the right balance of lending and equity to enable us to do just that. We are delighted to welcome the team at WPT to our expanding family and to have the support of such experienced investors to help us continue on our journey.”
The funding will also be used to support further acquisitions, scaling capability and product innovation with accelerated delivery of enhancements to support employers and engage employees.
Tim Levene, CEO of Augmentum Fintech, said: “We believe that workplace savings and investments are ripe for disruption and with public policy across Europe increasingly seeking to encourage people to save more, both for their retirement and in general, we believe there is significant opportunity to successfully challenge incumbents. We were impressed by Cushon’s blue-chip client list, world leading stance on climate change and its emphasis on getting people to understand the value of saving through the workplace. It is well placed to win significant market share.”
Phil Fretwell, Co-Founder and Partner of AshGrove Capital, said: “Cushon has developed disruptive technology enabling it to provide better outcomes for workplace savers, a market that is evolving rapidly and demonstrates clear organic and inorganic growth opportunities. The business model also exhibits strong credit characteristics due to its highly predictable revenue profile and compelling unit economics. Tech-enabled services is a key focus area for AshGrove Capital and in Cushon we have found an opportunity to support a superb management team with a positive sustainability agenda that has built a business which, in our view, is at an inflection point of growth.”
Declan McErlean, Managing Director of Construction First Limited, said: “We are delighted to be joining the Cushon Group. Workers Pension Trust employers and members alike will benefit from the investment, technology, and innovation that Cushon brings to workplace savings. Cushon is a natural fit for our members and employers. We believe this acquisition will allow us to enhance the employer experience and improve member outcomes.”