UK FinTech firm Prodigy Finance has closed a $40m (£31m) Series C led by Index Ventures with support from existing backer Balderton Capital and AlphaCode.
Additionally, the firm also announced it had raised $200m (£155m) in debt funding from a global investment bank.
It comes after the firm, which helps students fund their university business degrees, raised $100m from investors including Credit Suisse in August 2015.
The money will help Prodigy Finance boost its operational expansion and provide additional funding for students taking postgraduate degrees across business, engineering, law and public policy.
Cameron Stevens, founder and CEO of Prodigy Finance, said: “Students from emerging economies such as China, Brazil and India face challenges in accessing financing for education, even with high credentials and excellent credit quality. This investment will help us double the size of our student portfolio. We believe in financial inclusion and talent mobility, and look forward to continuing to help international students break the funding barrier and further their education at a top international university.
“International students play a key role in the graduate school ecosystem by contributing to revenue and improving the institution’s overall diversity; a determining factor when it comes to league tables and global rankings. We saw a market failure in international lending and have spent the last decade rectifying this problem. We’re excited about this investment as it will allow us to continue to grow and ensure there are no barriers to achieving academic potential.”
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Neil Rimer, a partner at Index Ventures, added: “Prodigy Finance is opening the doors of the world’s top universities to students who were previously shut out, because they couldn’t fund their education.
“Prodigy Finance is an example of an entrepreneurial financial services company using an innovative model to offer something of great value that is not available from traditional lenders. Every decade, the number of international students doubles and our hope is that Prodigy Finance will help accelerate that growth. Our planet sorely needs more educated citizens of the world,” Rimer concluded.
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