Vietnamese investment app Infina lands $2M seed round – TechCrunch

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The pandemic has spurred curiosity in saving and funding apps around the globe, particularly ones geared towards newer buyers. In Southeast Asia, startups on this house which have raised funding over the previous few months embody Ajaib, Bibit and Stashaway—and that’s only a (very) partial listing. Now Infina, which calls itself the “Robinhood of Vietnam,” is asserting an oversubscribed $2 million seed spherical.

The seed funding, which was made in two closes, included participation from Saison Capital, Venturra Discovery, 1982 Ventures, 500 Startups, Nextrans, and angel buyers like executives at Google and Netflix.

Infina launched its app in January 2021. Most of its customers are between the ages of 25 to 40 and searching for alternate options to investing in long-term asset courses like actual property. The app requires a minimal contribution of about $25 USD and lets buyers decide from property together with financial savings accounts, time period deposits, fractionalized actual property and mutual funds, which founder and chief govt officer James Vuong informed TechCrunch is at present the most well-liked asset class amongst Infina’s customers. Infina works with monetary companions like Dragon Capital, ACB Capital, Mirae Asset Fund Administration and Viet Capital Asset Administration.

The corporate notes that solely about 3.2% of individuals in Vietnam have invested in shares. However in keeping with the Vietnams Securities Depository, about 500,000 buying and selling accounts have been opened in the course of the first 5 months of 2021, a 20% enhance from all of 2020. This, together with Vietnam’s excessive web penetration fee (about 70% as of January 2020) and the truth that greater than 3/four of of web customers have used on-line monetary companies earlier than, lays the groundwork for apps like Infina to take traction.

In assertion about its funding, Saison Capital companion Chris Sirise mentioned, “Retail investing in Vietnam is at an inflection level and we now have seen a number of different rising markets attain this break-out level. With an skilled group that’s keen about monetary literacy and schooling, Infina is well-positioned to journey this wave of development.”

Earlier than founding Infina, Vuong was an engineer in Silicon Valley earlier than returning to Vietnam to function vp of funding and a Kauffman Fellow at IDG Ventures. He additionally based a startup referred to as Lana Group that was acquired by Line Group. Vuong informed TechCrunch he believes Vietnam is coming into a “‘golden decade’ of hyper uninterrupted development as different Asian Tigers have had previously,” and created Infina to offers retail buyers an opportunity to partake in Vietnam’s monetary trajectory.

Whereas at residence throughout numerous phases of lockdown in Vietnam, Vuong mentioned many web customers started switching to digital companies, together with for investments. He added {that a} collection of rate of interest cuts by Vietnam’s Central Financial institution to assist companies throughout COVID-19 prompted many retail buyers to search for alternate options with greater returns than time period deposits.

“A majority of our customers are new buyers,” mentioned Vuong. “Though they’re aware of financial savings, mounted earnings or mutual fund investing are comparatively new to them.” The app’s interface and content material is geared towards them.

When customers register, Infina surveys their danger and return profile, then recommends an asset to start with. As they proceed investing, Infina’s customers see details about the danger and return profile of every asset class and the issuer’s profile, funding technique and historic efficiency. Like different funding apps with many more moderen buyers, Infina additionally creates its personal academic content material, like weblog posts, every day newsletters and movies.

“We’re very clear in communications on danger and returns, income and charges, and that’s our benefit in comparison with different platforms,” mentioned Vuong. He added that a part of the brand new funding can be used to rent individuals with technical and funding backgrounds to additional develop Infina’s KYC (know your buyer) system to higher analyze their danger urge for food, in addition to its system for evaluating every asset class.

Different funding apps in Vietnam embody Finhay and Tikop. When requested how Infina differentiates from its opponents, Vuong famous its big selection of asset courses, low minimal and transparency about various kinds of investments. He added that Infina shouldn’t be majority owned or tied to a selected issuer, “which permits us to be impartial and work with all the nation’s high-quality fund managers.”

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