Brazilian Startup Vaas Raises $2M for Pix Anti-Fraud Tools

Published 7 months ago

The Brazilian fintech startup, Vaas, which develops technology to counter financial fraud, has raised R$10 million (approximately $2 million) in a pre-seed funding round led by ABSeed. The funds will be used to develop anti-fraud tools aimed at Pix-related scams and to implement its go-to-market strategy.

Vaas’s Anti-Fraud Technology

Founded in Florianópolis by the creators of 3D decoration company Decora, Vaas’s primary focus is on financial transactions related to cryptocurrency. However, the company is also preparing to combat scams associated with Pix, a payment method that has become a popular target for fraudsters.

The company’s blockchain transaction-tracking platform, which is still in a proof-of-concept phase with large enterprises, is set to officially launch next month. This solution will track transactions through Pix and continue to develop anti-fraud tools for this type of payment.

In the realm of cryptocurrency, Vaas uses artificial intelligence to scrutinize the entire history of an asset portfolio to identify unusual or suspicious transactions. The blockchain’s function as an immutable and decentralized notary record enables this operation, allowing for tracing of funds even from previous wallets.

The Need for Transparency

As the cryptocurrency market has gained popularity, with traditional banks and financial institutions beginning to offer these assets, Vaas identified a need for a company that could provide transparency to transactions. “Financial institutions and banks will have to follow compliance rules and be in line with central banks, carry out their money laundering prevention, know where the money is coming from,” stated Gustavo Tremel, CEO of Vaas.

The Company’s Formation and Future Plans

Vaas was launched with an initial investment of R$5 million from founders Gustavo Tremel, Daniel Smolenaars, and Paulo Orione, following the sale of Decora. The founders created a coworking space, Hub Web 3, where they worked on different projects, leading to the creation of Vaas.

The pre-seed funding round marks the first time that institutional investors have joined Vaas. These include ABSeed, Fuse Capital, and Honey Island by 4UM.

Vaas aims to produce information using local data and cross-referencing, and to work in cooperation with other institutions. The company already has partnerships, such as with B3, enabling it to consult CPF and CNPJ transactions.

In addition to Pix, Vaas plans to develop a product for the future Drex, a Brazilian digital currency set to be launched by the Central Bank. As Tremel stated, Vaas’s unique selling point is its on-chain and off-chain engine which can measure risk in a way that other platforms cannot. The company’s final goal is to monitor every customer a bank wishes to track on an ongoing basis for a fixed monthly fee.