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股票交易创企8 Securities获2500万美元融资

近日,股票交易创企8 Securities宣布获得2500万美元融资,这也是8 Securities近4年来获得的最大一笔投资。

本次投资方为野村集团下属的野村资产管理部门。投资完成后,野村集团将获得8 Securities主要业务的少数股权和该创企日本分部的控股权。

8 Securities成立于2010年,2012年正式走入市场。其创始人Mikaal Abdulla和Mathias Helleu都曾先后供职于著名券商E-Trade公司。

据了解,8 Securities上一次融资是在2014年夏天,该公司利用这笔资金开发了智能投顾平台Chloe和免手续费股票交易服务平台Tradeflix,并分别于2016年和2017年10月推向市场。

而本次融资将主要用于平台的市场营销、团队建设等方面。

与美国的Robinhood不同,8 Securities专注于亚洲市场,其用户目前主要来自香港、中国大陆和新加坡。该公司表示,2018年尚无拓展新市场的计划,但是2019年可能会有所动作,而首选目标就是东南亚和中国。

近些年来,类似8 Securities这样的金融科技创企给传统银行、证券中间商等带来了不小的挑战。据8 Securities负责人介绍,该公司去年客户资产同比翻了一番,而营业额增长率也接近190%。

此外,这类创企的客户群体结构也与传统机构不同。比如野村的客户平均年龄为60到80岁,而8 Securities智能投顾的用户平均年龄为27岁,股票交易app用户平均年龄为30岁。

所以,为了更好地吸引和服务年轻一代消费者,野村集团近年来开始不断与金融科技创企进行联手。除8 Securities外,野村还在不久前与社交平台Line签署协议,允许其用户通过Line进行股票交易,该服务预计将于今年晚些时候正式在日本推出。

 

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Mikaal Abdulla, founder of stock trading startup 8 Securities, is feeling bullish today after pocketing his biggest-ever round of funding.

The US$25 million invested is the first time in four years that Abdulla has taken funding for his fledgling fintech empire.

“Our last round was in the summer of 2014. We used that capital to develop Chloe and Tradeflix,” he told Tech in Asia, referencing the startup’s robo-advisor, which launched in 2016, and the commission-free stock trading service that rolled out last October.

“We decided to raise a larger round now in order to invest much more in marketing and to expand our software development team. We have – to date – not invested materially in marketing, but given the strong traction we want to press the accelerator now,” he added.

Unlike US-based trading app Robinhood, 8 Securities is focusing on Asia. Most of its users are in its home city of Hong Kong as well as mainland China and Singapore.

“We do not anticipate entering any new markets in 2018, but 2019 will be active,” said Abdulla. “Our priority is Southeast Asia and China.”

Fintech meets finance titan

The funding comes from Japan’s biggest investment bank, Nomura, via its company-gobbling Nomura Asset Management wing. The finance giant’s US$25 million buys it a minority stake in 8 Securities’ main business, and a controlling stake in the startup’s Japan division.

This comes days after Nomura partnered with Line in a bid to allow users of the messaging app to buy and sell stocks. That service will be rolled out later in the year in Japan.

8 Securities is part of a new wave of fintech startups that are challenging banks and brokerages as well as older sites like E-Trade.

Both Abdulla and his business partner, co-founder Mathias Helleu, are former executives at E-Trade. Abdulla worked there for 12 years before establishing 8 Securities in 2010. It launched to the public in 2012.

“Our customer assets have doubled year over year and our turnover has grown by 190 percent over the same period,” he said, citing data from the end of last month. The founder isn’t disclosing any absolute figures.

If you picture retail investors as old people building a portfolio to nurse them through retirement, then 8 Securities’ young user base may come as a surprise. The average user of its AI advisor is 27, while for spinoff app Tradeflix it’s 30. It’s a different story at the 92-year-old institution that’s now the startup’s BFF.

“The average age of Nomura’s customers is between 60 to 80,” Abdulla pointed out. “But Nomura is committed to launching mobile products and services for millennials and see us as a strategic partner to do that.”


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