Building a business is hard especially fundraising during this climate, let alone being one of the few female-led fintech startups. The journey from zero to one is super exciting.
Today, we’re excited to announce $4.5M in funding consisting of a previously unannounced $1.7M pre-seed round and a $2.8M seed round. The round was led by Vectr Fintech Partners with participation from CrossFund, Yolo Investments, Magnivia Ventures, Son Tech Ventures, Boson Ventures and notable angels such as Anthony Warren and Olivia Warren of Peter Warren Automotive, Ken Cheung (former Founding Head of Asia Pacific — Facebook and Instagram and Co-Founder of OurSong with John Legend), Daniel Johnson of Mercurien Insurance and Bosco Tan.
First and foremost, I wanted to share how grateful we are to those that really believe in what we’re building at Hello Clever — our incredible network of investors, supporters, and our super star team members who have been there with us from day zero.
1. It’s a ‘clever’ ecosystem!
2022 has been an exciting year. We have been working diligently to launch our full suite of products and now we have achieved a significant milestone — being the first company to pioneer ‘Buy to Earn’ or a new category in payments that democratises rewards in a different way.
The economics of scale is indeed exciting as we have seen strong demand over the past six months and we have finally joined the “industry disruptors” club, lifting the needle to shake up an old industry that is worth $500 billions in Australia alone.
Our vision has always been to “create a bold ecosystem for everyone to win financially”, as we are showcasing this to the world I am so proud and excited to finally reveal the real ‘Clever’ ecosystem.
We want to introduce a new ecosystem that allows consumers to be financially healthier and our merchant partners to increase sales / reduce operating costs. That’s why we are not a single product, it’s a ‘Clever way’ of executing payment strategies to achieve better business outcomes. From Hello Clever as a consumer facing app, we have now evolved into building Hello Clever Business, Hello Clever Business API and Hello Clever Yield — which is our path into financial investing for Gen Zs.
2. Empower young generations at every step of the way.
Hello Clever is the first Australian buy-to-earn platform designed with the customer in mind. Through our real-time payment API — an instant payment solution powered by the New Payments Platform (NPP), PayTo and PayID — Hello Clever provides real-time cash back for customers and allows users to be clever with their spending by tracking across multiple bank accounts in real-time.
We utilise open banking, fast payments, and AI technologies to put together an end-to-end experience for young people around shopping, payments, earning cash back, and manage spending. With our suite of products our customers can find the best merchants for their needs and they can be sure that their spending earns them rewards, at the same time merchants can unlock new customers from our ecosystem and securely transact with reduced fraud and chargebacks.
Our lead investor, Mark Munoz, shares why he led the round:
“We hadn’t seen a fintech app for young audiences in the market with the same kind of traction and positive customer reviews, and we could tell Caroline was a force of nature and knew the industry inside-out. We forecast Hello Clever being able to grow into Southeast Asia through Philippines, Indonesia, and Vietnam. These are all large markets with big, young, and tech-savvy populations that can benefit enormously from a payment solution like Hello Clever.”
3. High school mates turned Co-Founders.
You can never be on this journey alone. I am super lucky to have a Co-Founder like Gavin who is also my best friend, soulmate and business partner.
I normally say to everyone that Gavin is a ‘male version’ of myself, we have the same commercial and product thinking mindset. We have never argued once, and from high school mates we are now Co-Founders. Together, we have created a chance to make a difference.
While we’re just getting started, we’re proud of our fast growing community of happy users. If you’re interested in joining our journey, drop us a line at [email protected]