The 24 fintech 'unicorns' worth over $1 billion ranked by value

Financial technology, or fintech, is a boom industry right now, with investment flooding into companies reinventing the way we do payments, lending, investing, and more.

Valuations in the sector are also sky-rocketing as more money floods in. Many companies are now reaching the fabled “unicorn” status — the term in the tech industry for companies worth $US1 billion (£640 million) or more.

Earlier this year conference organiser Finovate pulled together a list of all the fintech unicorns in the world that have sprung up since 2000, the last big tech boom.

We’ve pulled info on each of the companies, stripped out ones that have been acquired or lost value, and updated the values and money raised.

24. Mozido, a mobile payment and wallet provider

YouTube/Mozido
A still from Mozido's promotional YouTube video.

Value: $US1 billion (£640 million).

What it does: White-label mobile payment, shopping, and marketing products. Lets small businesses send out offers to customers and collect loyalty points.

Why its hot: The company is targeting emerging markets like Mexico, Southeast Asia, and Africa where a generation of consumers are skipping banking and moving straight to mobile money. Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt is an investor through his early-stage fund TomorrowVentures.

HQ: New York.

Founded: 2005.

Raised: $US307.2 million (£196.2 million).

23. TransferWise, an international money transfer service

TransferWise

Value: $US1 billion (£640 million).

What it does: Online international money transfer with cheaper fees than banks.

Why it's hot: The company has transferred £3 billion ($US4.7 billion) since launch and is now doing £500 million ($US783 million) a month. Sir Richard Branson and Silicon Valley VC fund Andreessen Horowitz are both investors.

HQ: London.

Founded: 2010.

Raised: $US90.4 million (£57.7 million).

22. Jimubox, a Chinese peer-to-peer loan provider

Ryan Lichtenwald/Lendit
Jimubox CFO and co-founder Barry Freeman, left, and CEO and co-founder Allen Dong.

Value: $US1 billion (£640 million).

What it does: Online peer-to-peer loans for small businesses and consumers.

Why it's hot: The company is part of a wave of so-called 'internet finance' companies that have sprung up across China in the last few years and is experiencing explosive growth.

HQ: Beijing.

Founded: 2013.

Raised: $US131.2 million (£83.7 million).

21. Funding Circle, a peer-to-peer loan platform for small businesses

Funding Circle

Value: $US1 billion (£640 million).

What it does: Peer-to-peer marketplace for business loans.

Why it's hot: It has funded £775 million ($US1.2 billion) worth of loans since launch and is currently growing its business in America.

HQ: London.

Founded: 2009.

Raised: $US273.2 million (£174.4 million).

20. Qufenqi, lets Chinese consumers buy electronics in instalments

Qufenqi
Qufenqi's homepage.

Value: $US1.3 billion (£830 million).

What it does: An online Chinese electronics retailer that lets buyers pay in monthly installments.

Why it's hot: It's raised a huge amount of money in little over a year and is targeting China's fast growing aspirational classes. Like a lot of Chinese companies, it hasn't disclosed much more than funding but investors clearly see big growth potential.

HQ: Beijing.

Founded: 2014.

Raised: $US225 million (£143.6 million).

19. Housing.com, online Indian real estate platform

Housing.com
Housing.com's logo

Value: $US1.3 billion (£830 million).

What it does: Indian online real estate platform that also provides home loans.

Why it's hot: Japanese technology giant SoftBank is the company's largest backer, recognising the potential of the property market in a country with 1.2 billion people.

HQ: Mumbai.

Founded: 2012.

Raised: $US139.5 million (£89 million).

18. SoFi, a marketplace for student loan refinancing

SoFi
SoFi CFO Nino Fanlo, left, and co-founder and CEO Mike Cagney.

Value: $US1.3 billion (£830 million).

What it does: Peer-to-peer student loan refinancing, mortgages, and other types of personal loans.

Why it's hot: It has financed $US3 billion (£1.9 billion) of loans to date and is rumoured to be planning an IPO in the next year.

HQ: San Francisco.

Founded: 2011.

Raised: $US766.2 million (£489 million).

17. iZettle, makes card readers for smartphones

iZettle
iZettle CEO Jacob de Geer.

Value: $US1.4 billion (£890 million).

What it does: Makes card readers for smartphones to let independent traders and small businesses accept payments.

Why it's hot: A 'couple of hundred thousand' iZettle terminals are in use across Europe, according to CEO Jacob de Geer, and 46% of card readers in Sweden are iZettles.

HQ: Stockholm.

Founded: 2010.

Raised: $US114.3 million (£72.9 million).

16. Xero, makes cloud-based accountancy software for small businesses

Xero
Chris Ridd, MD of Xero Australia.

Value: $US1.4 billion (£890 million).

What it does: Cloud-based accounting software for small businesses.

Why it's hot: PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel was an early investor. Earlier this year CEO Rob Drury announced the company has 500,000 paying subscribers.

HQ: Wellington, New Zealand.

Founded: 2006.

Raised: Publicly traded.

15. Adyen, an online payment processor

Adyen
Adyen CEO Pieter van der Does.

Value: $US1.5 billion (£960 million).

What it does: Payment platform that accepts multiple forms and methods of transaction.

Why it's hot: Facebook, Airbnb, Uber, SoundCloud, and Netflix are all customers.

HQ: Amsterdam.

Founded: 2006.

Raised: $US266 million (£169.8 million).

14. Oscar Health, online health insurance

YouTube/DLDConference
Oscar Health founder Josh Kushner

Value: $US1.5 billion (£960 million).

What it does: Digital health insurance for the post-Obamacare era.

Why it's hot: The company took just 16 months to break the $US1 billion valuation mark and backers include PayPal co-founder Peter Theil, Goldman Sachs, and Li Ka-shing, Asia's richest man.

HQ: New York.

Founded: 2013.

Raised: $US295 million (£188.3 million).

13. FinancialForce.com, sells cloud-based accounting apps

Glassdoor/FinancialForce.com
FinancialForce.com's head office in San Francisco.

Value: $US1.5 billion (£960 million).

What it does: Makes cloud-based financial service apps, covering accounting, billing, revenue recognition, supply chain management, and more.

Why its hot: Tonnes of big enterprise companies use it, including Hewlett Packard and Lexmark.

HQ: San Francisco.

Founded: 2009.

Raised: $US186.3 million (£118.9 million).

12. Zuora, software that lets companies take subscriptions

Zuora
Tien Tzuo, founder and CEO of Zuora.

Value: $US1.5 billion (£960 million).

What it does: Provides software that lets companies easily take subscriptions.

Why it's hot: Everyone from the Financial Times to cloud storage company Box, Dell, DocuSign, and ZenDesk use the service.

HQ: San Francisco.

Founded: 2007.

Raised: $US242.5 million (£154.8 million).

11. Prosper, a peer-to-peer lending platform for consumers

Prosper
Prosper CEO Aaron Vermut.

Value: $US1.9 billion (£1.2 billion).

What it does: A peer-to-peer lending marketplace for consumers.

Why it's hot: Almost $US5 billion (£2.5 billion) has been lent over the platform. Backers include former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, famed Silicon Valley VC fund Sequoia Capital, and Credit Suisse.

HQ: San Francisco.

Founded: 2005.

Raised: $US354.9 million (£226.5 million).

10. One97

One97
A shot of One97's Paymt app in action

Value: $US2 billion (£1.2 billion).

What it does: Runs Paytm, an online platform that lets people pay bills and shop online. It's India's largest mobile marketplace.

Why it's hot: Paytm has 50 million registered wallets and handles 800,000 orders a day. Uber is a partner.

HQ: New Delhi.

Founded: 2000.

Raised: $US585 million (£373.4 million).

9. Klarna, online payment processing

Klarna

Value: $US2.25 billion (£1.4 billion).

What it does: User friendly payment systems for mobile and web.

Why it's hot: Last year it processed $US9 billion (£5.7 billion) worth of transactions and it deals with 30% of all online payments in its native Sweden. Sequoia Capital, the Silicon Valley fund that backed PayPal, is an investor.

HQ: Stockholm.

Founded: 2005.

Raised: $US282 million (£180 million).

8. Powa Technologies, makes mobile payment products

Powa CEO and founder Dan Wagner.

Value: $US2.7 billion (£1.7 billion).

What it does: Mobile payment technologies both for online and in person purchases.

Why it's hot: The company closed a massive $US76 million (£48.5 million) Series A funding round in 2013 and works with retailers such as Adidas, Reebok, Universal Music, L'Oreal, and Carrefour.

HQ: London.

Founded: 2007.

Raised: $US176.7 million (£112.8 million).

7. Credit Karma, free credit scores

Credit Karma
Credit Karma's website.

Value: $US3.5 billion (£2.2 billion).

What it does: Provides free online credit reports, offsetting the cost of paying for them with targeted advertising of financial products.

Why it's hot: The company has 35 million users and Google Capital is an investor.

HQ: San Francisco.

Founded: 2007.

Raised: $US368 million (£234.9 million).

6. Zenefits, free HR software for small businesses

Business Insider/Julie Bort
Zenefits' San Francisco office.

Value: $US4.5 billion (£2.8 billion).

What it does: Payroll, HR, health insurance, and compliance management software for small businesses. It offers its platform for free and makes money by charges health insurers a broker fee.

Why it's hot: Revenue grew from $US1 million (£640,000) to $US20 million (£12.7 million) between 2013 and 2014, leading TechCrunch to call Zenefits one of the fastest growing software companies of all-time.

HQ: San Francisco.

Founded: 2013.

Raised: $US583.6 million (£372.5 million).

5. Lending Club, America's biggest peer-to-peer consumer loans platform

Bloomberg via Getty Images
Renaud Laplanche, CEO, Lending Club

Value: $US4.7 billion (£3 billion).

What it does: A consumer peer-to-peer loans platform, America's biggest.

Why it's hot: To date it has funded $US11.1 billion worth of loans (£7 billion), with $US1.9 billion (£1.2 billion) of that in the last quarter. The company had one of the largest tech IPOs of 2014, raising $US900 million (£574.5 million).

HQ: San Francisco.

Founded: 2007.

Raised: Public.

4. Stripe, online payment processing

Value: $US5 billion (£3.1 billion).

What it does: Online payment processing, letting both businesses and companies accept payment over the internet.

Why it's hot: Fitbit, Pinterest, Twitter, Salesforce.com, Lyft, The Guardian, Kickstarter, and Reddit are some of the notable companies that use it.

HQ: San Francisco.

Founded: 2010.

Raised: $US190 million (£121 million).

1. Lufax, Chinese peer-to-peer lender

Lufax
Lufax's website.

Value: $US10 billion (£6.3 billion).

What it does: Chinese peer-to-peer loans and financing platform, one of the countries largest. As well as operating online, the company has around 100 shops in 80 cities, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Why it's hot: Lufax has financed 20,000 loans worth a collective $US2.5 billion (£1.6 billion) since launch.

HQ: Shanghai.

Founded: 2011.

Raised: $US485 million (£309 million).

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