Transferwise raises $58m from Andreessen-led round

Peer-to-peer money transfer group TransferWise has raised $58 million in a Series C funding round led by US venture capital group Andreessen Horowitz.

Andreessen Horowitz’s investment in TransferWise comes as part of a turnaround in the European tech sector, which has often missed out on funding from Silicon Valley investors who preferred startups that were closer to home.

“Andreessen Horowitz’s interest in TransferWise shows how ripe financial services are for disruption,” said Taavet Hinrikus, co-founder and CEO, in a statement. “For too long legacy providers’ dominance of the market has allowed consumers to be hoodwinked into paying huge hidden charges for services as basic as currency exchange.”

One of Andreessen Horowitz’s founding partners Ben Horowitz will join TransferWise’s board.

This latest round, which also involved previous backers  Sir Richard Branson, Peter Thiel’s Valar Ventures, Index Ventures, IA Ventures, and Seedcamp, is rumoured to have brought Transferwise close to a valuation of $1bn. The company plans to use the funds to expand into the US, Germany and Australia and add 300 additional currencies to the 292 already supported in its currency swap model.

The funding will help TransferWise compete against other startups such as Azimo, CurrencyFair and peerTransfer, as well as banks and older money transfer providers that still hold sway in the money transfer market. The company has been growing at a rapid pace, and says that $3 billion has already been transferred on its platform, a huge jump from the $1 billion mark passed in April. TransferWise said in November that the company was seeing growth of between 20 and 30 per cent per month, but The Financial Times indicated that a blog post due to be released on Monday noted a current growth of 15 to 20 per cent.

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