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Thought Machine hits $1 billion valuation in JPMorgan-backed funding


JPMorgan Chase & Co. signage is illuminated at night at a bank branch in Chicago, Illinois.

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LONDON — British fintech start-up Thought Machine has raised $200 million in a fresh round of funding that lifts its valuation above the coveted $1 billion mark.

Nyca Partners led the cash injection. This U.S-based venture capital company has made previous bets on several companies, including AffirmRevolut and other major lenders, including JPMorgan Chase, Standard CharteredAnd ING.

Existing investors Lloyds Banking Group, EurazeoPlease see the following: SEBThey also increased their holdings.

Thought Machine was founded in 2014 by Paul Taylor (an ex-Google engineer), and claims its software assists big banks to move from their legacy IT infrastructure to a cloud-based, modern platform.

Many of the firm’s big-name bank backers are its clients. JPMorgan has signed a deal to take over the core retail banking system of the bank in the U.S. Thought Machine in Britain has an identical deal with Lloyds.

Taylor explained that his company’s mission was “not small” and required substantial investments to reach its goals. Though Thought Machine has been generating “tens to millions of pounds” in revenues, but it’s not yet financially viable, Taylor said. Multi-year subscriptions to software are the company’s main source of income.

Taylor stated that it was a great time to become an entrepreneur in an interview with CNBC. “There is now more funding than ever.”

“It is a sign that we in the U.K. can build.” Instead of constantly looking at Silicon Valley, we should be building a global company.

Thought Machine intends to make use of the new cash to expand international. With about 20 employees, Thought Machine opened a New York office earlier in the year.

Thought Machine will also be opening new offices in Japan, Malaysia, and other Asian countries. The CEO of Thought Machine stated that Asia accounts for around half the company’s revenue. The company employs around 500 employees worldwide.

It competes against the likes MambuThis company, valued at more than $2B in the most recent round of funding, was also acquired by 10x Future Technologies, a fintech venture founded by Antony Jenkins (ex-CEO Barclays). 10x also backed by JPMorgan.

Thought Machine is just one of many new fintechs that are business-focused and looking to work with banks around the globe. There are many new digital competitors to banks like Chime, Revolut, and N26.

These challengers are yet to have a major impact on the market share held by the incumbents. However, they have gained significant popularity with consumers. plenty of fundingVenture capitalists are open to subventioning substantial losses in order to support rapid growth.

Banks don’t sit still. Many banks have tried to launch their own digital products to be able to bank online, with varying levels of success.

JPMorgan recently launchedIn the U.K. Chase launched a digital version of its Chase brand, and Credit Suisse introduced a new app, CSX in Switzerland.

However, there have been many failures in the digital transformation of lenders. RBS for instance. shut down its Bo online banking brandLast year.

Taylor stated that Taylor’s goal was not to select winners. Our goal is to make it easy for anyone who wants to start a bank on the cloud.

Thought Machine’s founder answered a question about whether there was a prospect of an initial public offering. He said the company would go public in three years.