Axios Pro: Fintech Deals

November 02, 2022

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1 big thing: Arta Finance nabs $90M

Pictured: Caesar Sengupta, in 2017. (Photo credit: SAJJAD HUSSAIN/AFP via Getty Images)

Pictured: Caesar Sengupta, in 2017. (Photo credit: SAJJAD HUSSAIN/AFP via Getty Images)

Arta Finance, a fintech co-founded by Google Pay's former head Caesar Sengupta, raised $90 million in Series A funding, the company announced today.

Why it matters: The hefty round is a strong endorsement for a company aiming to bring the same tools to the young and wealthy that a family office brings to the ultra-wealthy.

Details: Launched in August 2021, Arta raised from investors including Sequoia Capital India, Ribbit Capital, Coatue, Betsy Cohen, and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt. The company did not disclose its valuation.

  • The idea, Sengupta says, started while he and co-founders were at the search giant.
  • They were wealthy enough that daily bills were no longer a concern, but not quite wealthy enough for a family office.

Of note: "We were looking at the people who had made it like Larry (Page), Sergey (Brin), and Eric, and all these people had family offices. And it felt like these family offices were giving them financial superpowers," says Sengupta, who left Google in early 2021.

  • The company is targeting, initially, those in tech who qualify as accredited investors in the U.S.

Context: Creating a digital family office for the young and wealthy is not a new concept. But Arta's attempt to bundle discrete financial products onto one wealth management platform sets it apart.

  • Companies like Vise and Ethic, for example, seek to automate investing, while businesses like SecFi lend to employees who are equity rich but cash poor. Other startups like Equi, meanwhile, bill themselves as a digital family office offering alternative investing.
  • Arta plans to do all that under one roof, having this year acquired a company called Money Mix, which will show users' various investing and banking accounts in one dashboard.

The big picture: Sengupta says the company raised more than it needed because of the uncertain macroeconomic environment. Conventional wisdom says startups raise for a year to two years of runway; Sengupta raised for six years.

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