Fintech

Plaid raises $250 million, now valued at $2.65 billion

plaid financial technology app

Plaid, a San Francisco-based app programming platform for banks and other financial services providers, raised $250 million in Series C funding at what Axios has learned is a $2.65 billion valuation. Kleiner Perkins Growth led, and was joined by Andreessen Horowitz, Index Ventures and return backers Goldman Sachs, NEA and Spark Capital.

Why it matters: It's around a 10x valuation bump from where Plaid last raised in 2016, representing how Plaid has become integral infrastructure for top digital finance companies like Acorns, Coinbase, Robinhood and Venmo. As Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva notes, "Plaid is to finance apps what Stripe is to e-commerce."

Expert Voices

Despite rise of mobile money, millions still outside U.S. bank system

Customers in the newly remodeled branch of Check:Time in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn in New York on Thursday, January 14, 2016.
Customers in a Brooklyn, New York, branch of Check:Time, which provides financial services to the unbanked. Photo: Richard Levine/Corbis via Getty Images

More than 60 million Americans continue to exist on the fringes of the financial system, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced this week. They either have no bank account or are “underbanked,” meaning they do have an account, but also have used payday loans, pawn shop loans or money orders in the past year.

Why it matters: Because insurance, savings and other protections often require ownership of a bank account, those who are excluded from the system are highly vulnerable to unexpected financial hardship. Not having a bank account also means being almost completely locked out of the benefits of a growing stock market.

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