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London Co-investment Fund

Curve – All your cards in one

Curve is connecting the banks you trust with the new financial technologies you want to use.

The idea for Curve started with the realization that people will increasingly look beyond their banks for tools to help them manage and spend their money. However, it shouldn’t require us to leave our banks to use these tools. Founders Shachar Bialick and Tom Foster-Carter believe ‘’What’s needed is a way to connect trusted institutions with innovation; a mobile platform, agnostic to where the account is held and focused on customer control, convenience and security.’’ With this mission at heart, the Curve card was launched in February 2016 to entrepreneurs and small business owners.

On its most basic level, Curve is a payment card that aggregates all your cards in one, but what makes it a disruptive fintech solution is the added functionality which delivers a seamless payment experience. With a tap on the connecting Curve app, you can choose the card you want to use for each transaction. Alongside the convenience to carry just one card whilst having the benefits of all, Curve allows you to see every transaction in real-time across all your bank cards, label your expenses, save on bank charges while travelling abroad.

On the road to success….

Within just eight months of being launched, Curve has achieved encouraging results and recognition from the industry.

  • Curve has hit £15M in payment transactions
  • Curve cards have been used in over 80 countries and 80 currencies
  • 75% of people who have started using Curve keep using Curve
  • Over 15,000 active customers
  • Named as The Leading Payments Start-Up at the 2016 Emerging Payments Awards, in recognition of its innovative approach to building a user-friendly platform for everything money.

But all these achievements have not been without the challenges that come with a disruptive idea. There are significant technical challenges to overcome in stitching the old world to the new. This takes strategic and operational problem-solving expertise every day, from product development to negotiations with payment partners. And the most crucial of all is to build a team capable of taking on these challenges.

 

Curve – The Leading Payments Start-Up at the 2016 Emerging Payments Awards

Photo: Team Curve

The LCIF support….

The Curve team tells us that the LCIF investment not only provided the financial support but also the networking opportunities required to raise their profile. The Curve founders were initially introduced to Capital Enterprise and were soon enrolled in their Green Light Programme delivered as part of the LCIF application process. As a part of this programme, they were introduced to various investors and industry experts including the Idea London network of like-minded entrepreneurs. These opportunities substantially raised their profile within the early-stage community and helped attract talented staff who have propelled the business forward. This also opened fundraising opportunities with a broader range of great investors.

In October 2015, we invested in their $2m seed round alongside our co-investment partner Seedcamp and prominent fintech angel investors like Taavet Hinrikus of TransferWise, Ricky Knox of Tandem, Ed Wray of Betfair and former members of the Google Wallet team. Curve is a fine example of the companies that the London Co-investment Fund is designed to support and their performance so far encouraged us to participate in their second funding round of $3m which was successfully completed in September this year. The new round included investors like Citymapper backers – Connect Ventures, Envoy founder – Paul Townsend and Kabbee investor – Samos Investments.

What lies ahead….

Today, Curve has built a loyal community of users which continues to grow. It has received glowing recommendations from fintech experts and thought leaders. To keep up with expectations, they are constantly upgrading service and enhancing product features to give the users a better experience. They have recently launched their rewards programme to keep the community engaged with Curve.

The team is now preparing for their £6m Series A fundraise and are excited for the opportunities and challenges that lay ahead of them!

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