AREX Markets, the data-driven fintech company that drives financing costs down for SMEs and enables them to get access to cash quicker, today announces its Series A funding round, securing €8.8 million to accelerate its rollout in the UK and Spain.
Mosaic Ventures, which has strong fintech and SME financing expertise, and LocalGlobe led the round, joining existing investors Lifeline Ventures and angel investor Richard Laxer, former CEO of GE Capital. AREX had previously raised seed funding of EUR 3 million in 2016.
AREX’s unique approach to transforming the invoice factoring industry drove strong interest in the round, alongside its proven track record in the Nordics and sustained business growth at nearly 20% month-on-month during 2021.
Airto Vienola, CEO of AREX, comments, “Our goal is to level the playing field for SME financing. Banks remain reluctant to lend to SMEs, often leading to them feeling trapped when it comes to their business finances. We listen carefully to our partners’ and customers’ requirements and liberate the liquidity within their business. We’re already seeing a sharp rise in demand for this service and a willingness for business owners to finally reappraise their financing options, which have been so unfavourable for so long. Closing the Series A raise with such supportive and significant partners on board is a major milestone in AREX’s growth and continued expansion.”
With this funding AREX has launched in the UK and Spain with its proprietary technology that delivers embedded lending into accounting systems, allowing SMEs frictionless access to a competitive financing marketplace. The AREX technology seamlessly integrates into our customers’ softwares and processes by using data to drive automation of the often cumbersome financing workflow.
The AREX platform opens up an alternative to traditional invoice financing, facilitating a live, algorithm-based trade that enables SME’s to get access to cash trapped in their debtor book and allowing professional investors to invest in SME assets directly without prohibitive transaction costs.
The global pandemic has put immense pressure on SME businesses, with many suffering from slow or frozen payments. AREX helps them by unlocking their time and cash flow, financing up to 95% of all invoices sent to the platform within 24 hours.
This innovative approach saw AREX named Landing Platform of the Year in the prestigious Future Digital Awards for Fintech & Payments by Juniper Research. They were recognised as having made an outstanding contribution to the industry.
Toby Coppel, Partner of Mosaic Ventures adds: “AREX is creating much needed cash flow opportunity, flexibility and access for SMEs – just as so many of these are coping with major pressures on their company finances. The business’ mission to change the face of SME lending, has already seen tremendous successes in the Nordic markets. As they expand further into the UK and Spain, it is an exciting time to come on board and partner with the management team to support their international growth.”
Timo Ahopelto, Founding Partner, Lifeline Ventures, said: “The AREX team is building an entirely new asset class and a critically important platform for SME financing that is game changing. SMEs in the UK and Spain will benefit from this alternative cash flow approach and be able to rebuild and scale their businesses after what has been a turbulent year.”
Julia Hawkins, General Partner, LocalGlobe adds: “SME financing is massively underserved and is ripe for a digital first solution. AREX's unique approach has been extremely effective in the Nordics, and we are now excited to help SMEs in the UK and Spanish markets access their capital much quicker. They are a team with proven execution, which can transform the SMEs growth trajectory.”