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Ex-Revolut and Spotify exec’s fintech startup Gro raises £5.2M from Northzone VC

London-based Gro, founded in 2020 by Hannes Graah, former VP Growth at Revolut, and Spotify veteran builds products called protocols or autonomous programs for a simpler and more friendly DeFi (decentralised finance) experience. Now, the fintech hasIt received $7.1 million (nearly £5.2 million) in seed funding to further its mission.

First product to go public in April

The investment round was led by decentralised finance VCs from New York – Galaxy Digital and Framework Ventures, and also global tech London VC, Northzone. Also, high-profile business angels including founders of DeFi protocols Aave, Compound and Synthetix took part in the funding round.

Gro intends to use the new funding to scale its two initial products that offer decentralised and legacy finance components in order to balance users’ yield and risk preference including lending, trading and insurance.

Further, the company also plans to make its first product available to the public in April, this year . In addition to this, there are plans to triple the existing team of 10 this year. Currently, the team includes finance and tech professionals from leading tech firms including Revolut, Spotify, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan and more.

Wendy Xiao Schadeck, Partner at Northzone, commented: “Hannes is a seasoned operator who knows upside down the consumer financial apps ecosystem and has a clarity of vision and deep knowledge of the crypto-native community needed to build a leader in the space. He has an experimentation driven mindset which is important for consumer products while having a practical expertise for navigating the regulatory and other adoption hurdles. Hannes has already attracted leaders in the industry as advisors and investors, and Gro is poised to become a talent magnet.”

Hannes Graah, co-founder and CEO, commented: “DeFi enables a more efficient service stack through open collaboration and competition. This allows creation of more value, but instead of distributing it like a bank, we want to build for the ownership economy. Accruing more value to those who help create it and fuel a movement for fair distribution of wealth”

Michael Jordan, Galaxy Digital, commented: “The last three years of development in DeFi created simple but empowering building blocks in lending, money markets, asset exchange, and more. These blocks made yield accessible for those with patience, expertise and risk tolerance. But user experience challenges and significant time and capital investment meant the addressable market was limited to those willing to put in the work. We’re excited to see Gro kick off the next phase of DeFi users who want exposure in consumer-friendly simple products.”

Makes DeFi accessible to all

DeFi is reinventing traditional financial services like lending, trading and insurance as open and transparent protocols. Protocols allow for faster innovation and permissionless integration which drive efficiencies that ultimately deliver more value to users. DeFi still requires technical expertise. This is where Gro comes to play.

Gro works with the mission to empower people to easily create and share wealth by combining the best of decentralised and legacy finance. It is building a series of products delivering value propositions only seen in DeFi with user experiences from finance & consumer tech, offering custom solutions that balances users’ yield and risk preference.