Bitcoin

Data Zoo Attracts First External Investment of $35 Million After 13 Years of Bootstrapping

2 Mins read

Data Zoo, a Sydney-based fintech providing global identity verification solutions, has secured $35 million (US$22.7 million) in Series A funding from Ellerston Capital’s JAADE fund.

This marks the company’s first external investment since its founding in 2011 by Tony Fitzgibbon, who bootstrapped the business to its current scale.


TLDR

  • Sydney fintech Data Zoo has raised $35 million (US$22.7 million) in Series A funding from Ellerston Capital’s JAADE fund, marking the company’s first external investment.
  • Data Zoo provides identity verification software for KYC compliance and fraud prevention, using patented technology that enhances efficiency and data privacy.
  • The company, founded by Tony Fitzgibbon in 2011, has grown to more than 80 employees globally, with offices in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, the US, and Europe.
  • The fresh funds will be used to drive adoption and innovation in Data Zoo’s identity verification software, which has access to identity data from more than 170 countries and serves major financial institutions, payment providers, and fintech startups.

The funding round values Data Zoo at more than $100 million and will be used to drive adoption and innovation in the company’s identity verification software.

The software, developed by Fitzgibbon and chief information officer Memoona Anwar, uses patented technology to enhance KYC compliance and fraud prevention while safeguarding customer privacy by eliminating the need for identity data storage.

Data Zoo’s software provides direct access to authoritative identity data from over 170 countries and features advanced data sequencing to improve efficiency and maximize conversions.

The company’s customer base includes a Big Four Australian bank, a global social media brand, and three of the top global payment providers.

Under Fitzgibbon’s leadership, Data Zoo has grown to more than 80 employees globally, with offices in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, the US, and Europe. In February 2024, Fitzgibbon stepped down as CEO after a decade at the helm, transitioning to the role of chairman. Former London Stock Exchange executive Charlie Minutella has taken on the CEO role from New York.

Fitzgibbon emphasized the importance of Data Zoo’s solution in the face of rising fraud and identity theft, stating, “There’s been a long-standing need for a more efficient and secure way to verify identities.

Data Zoo has spent years refining its solution – the result has been incredible innovation, UX optimization, and growth in a fiercely competitive market, putting us head-to-head with today’s most established identity providers.”

Ellerston JAADE investment director David Leslie praised Data Zoo’s impressive growth and international expansion, particularly into challenging markets like North America, without prior external funding.

“Data Zoo’s impressive growth, solidifying itself as a trusted identity provider against well-established competitors – all without prior funding – is no small feat,” he said.

For crypto exchanges, wallet providers, and other businesses operating in the digital asset space, Data Zoo’s solution offers a compelling value proposition.

By leveraging the company’s patented technology, crypto companies can streamline their KYC processes, reduce fraud, and ensure compliance with global regulations – all while safeguarding customer privacy by eliminating the need for identity data storage.


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