September 18, 2020
The fintech world has a new heavyweight.
Chime, the start-up that delivers banking services through mobile phones, has closed a fundraising that values the company at $14.5 billion, CNBC has learned exclusively. That lofty figure makes Chime the most valuable American fintech start-up serving retail consumers. Robinhood, the popular free-trading app, raised money last month at an $11.2 billion valuation. The moves show that even as investors punish the shares of established U.S. banks — the KBW Bank Index has lost a third of its value this year — they are willing to lavish money on pre-IPO fintech companies that increasingly look like segment winners.
In this latest round, a Series F that raised $485 million, Chime more than doubled its valuation from December and is worth almost 900% more than just 18 months ago, when it hit a $1.5 billion valuation. Chime is ranked No. 25 on the 2020 CNBC Disruptor 50 list.
The development places Chime among a group of tech-centric companies, both publicly traded and private, that have experienced torrid growth during the coronavirus pandemic. Chime, the biggest of a new breed of start-up known as challenger banks, has more than tripled its transaction volume and revenue this year, according to CEO Chris Britt. Read rest here.