With $73 million CAD, Symend closes one of the largest Series B rounds in recent Alberta history

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Betakit | | May 7, 2020

Symend  - With $73 million CAD, Symend closes one of the largest Series B rounds in recent Alberta historyCalgary-based Symend has raised a $73 million CAD ($52 million USD) Series B round of funding for its customer engagement platform designed to better connect with financially at-risk customers.

The round includes $47 million USD in equity and $5 million USD in term financing from Silicon Valley Bank. The round was led by Inovia Capital’s growth fund, with participation from a group of returning and new investors, including Ignition Partners, Impression Ventures, BDC Capital’s Women in Technology Fund, Mistral Venture Partners, Telus Ventures, BMO Capital Partners, and angel investors including Plenty of Fish founder Markus Frind.

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Symend CEO and co-founder Hanif Joshaghani told BetaKit that the majority of the round was primary, with a small portion of secondary investment. In May 2019, Symend quietly raised a Series A round led by Ignition Partners. Symend also raised a prior seed round led by Impression Ventures, and an angel round that included a personal investment from Joshaghani. The Series B brings the start

Symend Hanif Joshaghani - With $73 million CAD, Symend closes one of the largest Series B rounds in recent Alberta history

Hanif Joshaghani at Symend wins NCFA's 2018 VanFUNDING pitch competition in downtown Vancouver #VF2018

up’s total funding to date to more than $85 million CAD ($60 million USD), according to Joshaghani.

The startup noted that its $73 million CAD round marks one of the largest Series B rounds in recent Alberta history. The province’s tech sector has matured at a rapid rate over the past few years, with tech startups comprising 35 percent of Alberta-owned and operated technology companies in 2019.

Alberta was the fifth largest Canadian market for venture capital investment last year, with $227 million across 39 deals. According to PwC Canada and CB Insights’ report for the full year 2019, Calgary deal activity increased from five to 22 deals last year, while funding rose to $132 million.

Symend was founded in 2016 by Joshaghani, a serial entrepreneur who had previously invested in Wave, and Tiffany Kaminsky, a sales and marketing strategist that serves as the company’s chief strategy officer.

The startup has developed an “engagement platform” designed to better engage, treat, and retain financially at-risk customers. Symend’s mission is to digitally transform the engagement experience for those consumers by using behavioural science, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.

Symend works with enterprise organizations such as service providers and financial institutions to help them interact with at-risk customers “with empathy.” The company says it has “treated” more than 10 million at-risk customers to date and is on track for 100 million by the end of 2020.

“We started this company with the north star of, ‘lets help people and help as many people as we can,’” Joshaghani told BetaKit. “The mic drop moment is, if you can measure at an ecosystem or country-level the number of people you’ve saved from this negative credit outcome, and we’re doing that now.”

“It’s not about collecting every dollar, it’s about preserving lifetime value and working with the customers to find a resolution that ensures that they keep their service, and they’re not negatively impacted on their credit,” Kaminsky added.

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Symend sells its offering as a white-labelled software-as-a-service (SaaS) product. The startup helps companies create “treatment strategies” that are meant to positively engage customers who have outstanding debt. The startup’s goal is to replace legacy collection techniques and states that its scientific research confirms that positively engaged customers are more apt to pay debts in full as well as stay with their provider or financial institution over the long run.

“Enterprises that take an innovative approach to solving common business challenges with a human touch catch our attention,” Rich Osborn, managing partner of Telus Ventures told BetaKit. “Symend is a great example of a company doing exactly that, using both data and digital interactions to create thoughtful solutions that consider both immediate and future customer relationships.”

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - With $73 million CAD, Symend closes one of the largest Series B rounds in recent Alberta history The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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