N26 GmbH, the German banking app that’s backed by billionaires Peter Thiel and Li Ka-shing, has raised new funds at a valuation of $2.7 billion, making the company one of Europe’s most valuable non-listed fintech startups.
N26 is among a growing number of fintechs that focus on putting services on smartphones to grab customers from traditional banks. The latest funding will arm N26 with cash for its most ambitious plan yet — a push into the U.S. to snatch clients from the likes of JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Bank of America Corp.
The German company is entering an increasingly crowded market for online-only banks in the U.S. Large, traditional banks such as JPMorgan and Citigroup Inc. have touted new mobile-only banking efforts as a way to combat similar offerings from startups.
“Insight Venture and GIC are great partners to take on retail banking in the U.S.,” N26 Chief Executive Officer Valentin Stalf said in an interview. “We’re confident we can reach the first million customers in the U.S. within the first 12 to 24 months.”
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