Lunar Way, the Denmark-based Nordic fintech, has received €26 million in funding and has obtained a European banking license in the process. With the additional funding and a brand new banking license at hand, Lunar Way plans to accelerate the development of their new Nordic bank and the growth of Danish, Swedish and Norwegian markets.
Lunar Way, the Nordic fintech that has made it its mission to challenge the banking industry, is on the move once again. In a new funding round led by SEED Capital, Lunar Way secured €26 million while also obtaining a European banking license from the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority. The license effectively transforms Lunar Way from fintech to the newest bank of the Nordics.
"The funding and banking license is the preliminary culmination of years of hard work and dedication from the entire Lunar Way team. We have grown from a small startup to a fintech with close to 100 employees from Denmark, Sweden and Norway with users in all of Scandinavia - a market notoriously hard to penetrate. All the while challenging the status quo of banking in the Nordics and meeting the regulatory demands of becoming a bank. We're the very first of our kind in the Nordics to get a banking license. We've done all this in four years. That in itself is an accomplishment. But our journey is only just starting now," says founder and CEO of Lunar Way, Ken Villum Klausen.
The Nordic market consists of only 27 million people but is the home of the most stable economies in the world with some of the wealthiest and tech-savvy populations on the planet. Even though it's known for being hard to crack for new banking entrants due to the Nordic clearing systems, and high demands for safety and payment infrastructures that vary greatly from country to country, Lunar Way has chosen to focus its efforts solely on the Nordic markets since day one.
"Unlike other fintechs that have chosen to expand vertically, Lunar Way's approach is to go deep in the Nordics, building not just a supplement for users to have when travelling or as an add-on to their other banking solutions, but as a 100% digital, innovative and true alternative to traditional banks. We mean it when we say that the goal is to change the status quo of banking and to be the #1 banking app of the Nordics," Ken Villum Klausen explains.
With populations where 90% is digitally native and already has a mobile banking solution, the first challenge of the Nordics is to offer a product that is innovative, easy to manage and compelling. The next challenge is to launch a bank, unlike anything the users know.
"The future belongs to those who offer the best user experience, and it's our ambition to be the leading financial marketplace in the Nordics. We already offer the users control of their entire personal finances, spending overview, savings, interactive budgets and up to 4% interest. The plan going forward is to collaborate with those who offer the best financial solutions out there and tie the whole thing together in the Lunar Way app. From here the user can access, view and handle all their personal finance needs," says Ken Villum Klausen and elaborates.
"We've already taken the first steps in Denmark and offers insurance, loans, multi-currency cards and so on with several different partners. Soon we'll provide investments with Saxo Bank. The bank license will help us create similar marketplaces for our Swedish and Norwegian users faster. It will also enable us to build our own financial products."
Lunar Way is available in Denmark, Sweden and Norway and already has employees from all three countries in the offices in Copenhagen and Aarhus. The first Stockholm office has just opened, and Oslo is next in line. The newly acquired funding of €26 million will facilitate the next step, which is to further anchor Lunar Way locally while cementing its ambitions of becoming the #1 banking app in the Nordics.
"We've already gained significant grounds in the Nordics in the past year alone, and we expect to go even further with these new possibilities," Ken Villum Klausen concludes.