Four months after closing its Series A round, Brazilian B2B fintech Stark Bank raised a $45 million Series B led by Ribbit Capital and followed by Bezos Expeditions, Jeff Bezos‘ investment firm, which made its first investment in a Brazilian company, and SEA Capital, as well as existing investors Lachy Groom and K5 Global, among others.
Founded in 2018 by Rafael Stark, Stark Bank presents itself as the “first challenger bank for enterprises”. The digital bank was born with the proposal to serve small and medium-sized companies and then began to target large businesses. Today it serves more than 300 companies, including Quinto Andar, Loft, Buser, Isaac, Bitso, Daki, and Colgate.
“We are creating the banking of the future from scratch by redefining the experience for large enterprises and building an ecosystem that allows our customers to do any banking operation within our platform. We deliver dashboards, expense control, reconciliation and financial management, enabling companies to make decisions from data,” says Stark.
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Stark Bank’s product portfolio includes cash management, currency exchange, corporate card, tailored payment approval flow, cost center management, payroll, and payment by slip and PIX (the Brazilian instant payment system).
Stark Bank’s flagship is the corporate card, which offers tailored spending control. With the fintech solution, corporate customers can issue multiple cards, physical or virtual, with spending limits per card, per currency, country, or even by spending frequency, whether daily, monthly, or even one-time purchases. Furthermore, the expenses can be linked to cost centers and it is still possible to add invoices to purchases, making the accounting control easier.
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Stark Bank has also been investing in PIX products. Its billing application, for example, replaces the bank slip with payments via QR Code or bank transfer. For e-commerces, this checkout flow increases sales conversion by allowing companies to get paid in real-time or email the customer with a payment link.
“Our competitive edge is having the technology in our hands. We did all our core banking in-house. We have our own license with the Central Bank and with Mastercard, we are directly connected to them, without an intermediary,” says Stark.
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The newly injected capital will be used to expand the product offering, such as investments, credit lines, and card payments, and to enhance the fintech‘s positioning as the leading bank for large companies. Stark Bank’s goal is to grow up to 10 times this year.
Stark will also open a business unit to sell banking infrastructure focused on fintechs and financial institutions. The unit will offer APIs for direct and indirect participants of the PIX system, Card as a Service (CaaS – issuance of a white label card), among other services.