Lydia App Announces USD$45m Series B Round; Felix Capital Raises USD$300m to Invest in Start-Ups


DTC’s Daily Digest brings you the latest news on the world’s fastest growing direct-to-consumer brands. In today’s edition: Lydia App announces USD$45m Series B round; Felix Capital raises USD$300m to invest in start-ups; and Rae Wellness to come in-store with Target. 

Lydia App announces USD$45m Series B round

French startup Lydia is raising a USD$45m Series B round (€40m). Tencent is leading the round with existing investors CNP Assurances, XAnge and New Alpha also participating.

The company has become a ubiquitous mobile payment app in France, especially for people under 30 years old. The company has managed to attract 3 million users in France. More impressive, 25% of French people between 18 and 30 years old have a Lydia account — and 5,000 people sign up every day. Lydia currently has 90 employees.

More recently, the company has expanded beyond peer-to-peer payment. First, the company wants to help you manage your money in many different ways with an important value — everything should happen in real time.

CEO and co-founder Cyril Chiche said “We have an ambitious goal, which is turning Lydia into a mobile financial service app.” Compared to many fintech startups, Lydia doesn’t want to replace banks altogether — the company says it wants to build a meta-banking app.

Felix Capital raises USD$300m to invest in start-ups

London-headquartered Felix Capital, a backer of Deliveroo, online retailer Farfetch and Gwyneth Paltrow’s lifestyle website Goop, has raised USD$300m (£231m) to invest in start-ups.

The Soho-based venture capital firm, founded in 2015 by Frederic Court, a former Lazard investment banker, did not reveal new backer names. But it said funding has come from institutional investors on behalf of pension funds, entrepreneurs and family offices.

It marks Felix Capital’s third funding round and the proceeds are expected to be spent in the UK, other parts of Europe and in the US.

Court praised the variety of creative and tech firms in London and said he is looking to help grow new brands in the capital.

Antoine Nussenbaum, partner at Felix Capital, said: “This new fundraising enlarges and strengthens our investor base.” He added: “We will continue to offer differentiated capital, with an ability to back founders driven by passion, authenticity and ambition of having a large and positive impact on the world.”

Rae Wellness to come in-store with Target

Women’s wellness brand Rae has announced their first venture into brick and mortar retail, with an exclusive partnership at Target. 

Previously, the direct-to-consumer wellness company was sold solely at Raewellness.co and quickly garnered a strong digital presence among consumers. “We’re thrilled with the exciting response Rae Wellness has received from our direct-to-consumer channels and we fundamentally believe in providing high-quality products without the high price tag,” said CEO and co-founder Angie Tebbe. “As a next step for our business, we are proud to be launching Rae Wellness at Target, a retailer that’s established itself for identifying the most innovative direct-to-consumer brands and bringing them to the masses.”

It is news we are now seeing almost daily – a DTC brand makes a name for itself online, before wanting to expand its presence and reach, and selling through retailers. One of the biggest questions for DTC brands when making this decision is picking a retail partner that mirrors their values and brand messaging. 

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