Ex-Social Finance CEO’s Blockchain Startup ‘Figure’ To Venture Into Banking With $65 Million Funding Round
Ex-Social Finance CEO’s Blockchain Startup To Get Into Banking
The ex-CEO of Social Finance Inc., Mark Cagney, has opened a blockchain startup called Figure recently and now he’s ready to sail banking again with his new company.
According to reports from Bloomberg, the company will announce a $65 million funding round this week. The money will be used to expand the reach of the company into financial services, which will include wealth management services.
It looks like Cagney will use some strategies that he already has mastered in SoFi in his new company. For instance, diversification into areas that traditional banks are generally occupying. Do not think that he will only repeat his old strategy, though. This new enterprise will likely be focused on a different group of customers.
Figure is catering to a demographic of “cash light and rich in equity”, CLAREs. These people tend to be older Americans with a significant income in equities. SoFi targetted HENRYs (high earners, not rich yet). Despite the differences in the segments, the strategy is somewhat similar in both cases. Create one product which has an edge in the market and then build around it.
One of the main goals is that the company should look like a robust financial platform that will meet the needs of all kinds of customers at the end of the year, so expansion and new projects will be the core of achieving this ambitious goal.
The company, which is based in San Francisco, will use the blockchain tech in order to provide fast equity loans, too. This new investment type will be led by DST Global and RPM Ventures. Bloomberg cites sources which affirm that the total equity fund of the company is now the double of what last year.
Since last year, Figure has provided more than 1,500 home equity lines of credit in a total of 36 U. S. states. The company has been loaning a lot of money, more than $1.5 million USD daily. The plan is to double the amount in a few months.
One of the goals of the company is to offer an alternative to reverse mortgages. The idea is to make it easier for Americans to borrow money against their homes. This is generally a very paperwork-intensive process and the idea is to make it easier.
According to Cagney, the biggest advantage of blockchain technology is that it makes the whole process of creating and offering financial products much easier as it creates an immutable ledger that stores all the information in a secure way.
Cagney Is Set To Avoid New Problems
Another important part of the plan is to avoid scandals like the one who made Cagney step down his prior role. In his new job, he wants to be away from all that. Before being a founder of Figure, Cagney worked in Social Finance Inc., one of the largest student loan refinancers of the U. S.
However, he had to resign after allegations of sexual misconduct (having consensual sex with his subordinates) and toxic work environment. Now, in his new company, Cagney affirms that he will be more careful with the culture of the company and that he has “grown” as a leader and learned to prioritize culture and diversity.
Figure currently has over 100 employees at the moment, they are based in three offices: California, Montana and Nevada.