Australia unicorn Airwallex seeks $200 million in funding

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Australia’s Airwallex group is seeking about $200 million in a series D equity funding round to bankroll its cross-border payments business globally, according to people familiar with the matter.

The company is valued at about $1.5 billion pre-money, said the people, who requested not to be named because the matter is private. The startup is talking with a strategic international financial company to lead its latest round, one of the people said.

Airwallex said in an emailed statement that it was in the process of raising funds, but declined to comment further.

Started in a Melbourne coffee shop in 2015, the company has attracted backers including Tencent Holdings Ltd., DST Global, Sequoia Capital, Hillhouse Capital Management Ltd. and Mastercard Inc. Airwallex was co-founded by Jack Zhang, the current chief executive officer, along with co-founders Lucy Liu, Jacob Dai and Max Li.

It helps clients settle payments when their users spend money overseas.

Airwallex primarily works with business clients such as merchants in China, enabling them to receive overseas payments in local currency within hours. Clients can use its service to open foreign currency accounts in the U.S., U.K., Europe and Australia.

Customers include Tencent’s WeChat, e-commerce site Inc and online learning platform 51Talk, the company said. It has 400 employees across 10 offices around the world.

Airwallex said it has raised over $200 million in venture funding to date. It was valued at more than $1 billion in March last year, based on the previous funding round.

Bloomberg News
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