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October 31, 2017updated 29 Jul 2022 3:32am

TransferWise set to gallop deeper into unicorn territory

If this initiative moves ahead, the company could secure a valuation in the region of £1.2 billion, deep within unicorn territory.

By Tom Ball

International money transfer startup, TransferWise, is reportedly about to entrench itself in the unicorn category by selling off new shares.

Carrying out this action would potentially cause the company’s value to soar above the heights of the £1.2 billion valuation.

The company founders, Taavet Hinrikus and Kristo Kaarman, are said to be poised to sell an amount of their substantial 40 per cent stake in what will be the beginning of a Series E funding round, as reported by Sky News.

In recent months TransferWise has received interest from the major US investment firm IVP. Talks were held regarding a multi-million pound stake, and it is anticipated that it could be as much as $60 million.

IVP is not the only investor that has shown interest in enhancing the British unicorn’s prominent standing, with a number of investors believed to be circling. Previously, high profile sources of investment have included Andreessen Horowitz, the US firm, and Sir Richard Branson.

TransferWise is making its name by disrupting the process of international money transfers, a process that was typically expensive when conducted via a bank. The firm extracts this problematic factor, streamlining the process.

The unicorn has also been able to support other disruptive forces within financial services; a principle example of this is the organisation’s work with Starling Bank. TransferWise has supplied an API to the digitally native mobile challenger, aiming to provide its customers with affordable currency transfers to 35 countries.

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Other activity in the last year from TransferWise has included a collaboration with Facebook, in which the unicorn was able to integrate its offering within the Facebook chat feature. This gave users the ability to make efficient money transfers from within the popular social media platform.

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This initiative expanded the capabilities of the money sending feature already available within Facebook Messenger, as it meant that transactions were no longer restricted to domestic use within the United States.

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