W2 Warren Russell

Newport-based W2 Global Data has raised £1.25m from investors including Mercia Fund Managers, Development Bank of Wales and TTI Angels.

The FinTech startup, which provides identity verification services in a bid to prevent fraud and money laundering, will use the cash to recruit an additional 20 people.

With this new equity fundraise, W2 Global Data brings its total amount raised to just over £3m.

W2 SaaS tools enable payment and financial services companies to screen clients and managers and online retailers to verify the identity of purchasers in card transactions and online gaming firms to check the age of players.

Set up in 2011 by Warren Russell, the current CEO, the business employs almost 40 people.

Russell commented: “The rapid growth of online fraud and increased regulation is putting real pressure on banks, financial services, online retailers and other businesses to verify their customers’ identity. Demand for our services has far outgrown our earlier projections and we have doubled our headcount over the past year.”

Julian Dennard, investment director at Mercia Fund Managers, explained why they backed the company again: “There is a growing global demand for the fraud detection and identity verification services that W2 provides. The company has a strong management team and an excellent reputation in the market. This latest funding round will allow it to build its team, enhance its platform and accelerate growth.”

Richard Thompson, senior investment executive at the Development Bank of Wales, said it was great to see companies like W2 Global Data expanding their workforce in Wales.

“It’s a testament to their growth and the success of their technology since relocating to Wales. We’re pleased to be able to continue supporting Warren and his team,” Thompson concluded.