Friday, June 18, 2021
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ReportWealthsimple anchors unicorn status by tripling valuation

Wealthsimple anchors unicorn status by tripling valuation

Canada’s digital investment platform Wealthsimple, which offers a Halal portfolio, has secured CA$750 million (US$610.71 million) in funding from an impressive list of investors both in the financial world, as well as the world of celebrities.

Led by Meritech and Greylock, the funding round, said to be the largest private tech investment in Canadian history, brings Wealthsimple’s valuation to CA$5 billion (US$4.07 billion). In October 2020, the company became a unicorn on CA$1.4 billion (US$1.14 billion) following a CA$114 million (US$92.83 million) investment round led by TCMI alongside Meritech Capital Partners, Greylock Partners, Two Sigma Ventures and returning investors Allianz X GmbH.

This announcement follows on the heels of revelations that the robo-advisor will be exiting the US market to prioritize its domestic business. With some of Canada’s more prominent personalities participating in the US$750 million round, it seems that realigning its focus to the Canadian market is benefiting Wealthsimple.

Actors Ryan Reynolds and Michael J Fox, athletes Kelly Olynyk, Dwight Powell and Patrick Marleau and musician Drake invested this time around. Institutional investors which participated include: DST Global, Sagard, Iconiq, Dragoneer, TCV, iNovia, Allianz X, Base 10, Redpoint, STEADFAST, Alkeon, TSV and Plus Capital.

Wealthsimple was founded in 2014 with just four people. It has since grown to a workforce of over 230, managing over CA$8 billion (US$6.51 billion) in assets.

On describing the company’s journey, CEO and Co-Founder Mike Katchen wrote: “Of course, banks in Canada were notoriously entrenched; the ‘big five’ have dominated financial services for around 150 years, and industry regulation made it hard for new players to break through. But being naively ambitious was a feature of Wealthsimple, not a bug — if we were going to change the financial life of a country, we had to believe we could do it when there was no reason to. I am happy to say that our mission doesn’t seem quite so naive anymore.”

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