Flybits secures $45 million CAD Series C for context-as-a-service platform


Toronto-based Flybits, a context-as-a-service platform for mobile apps, has closed a $45 million CAD ($35 million USD) Series C round, led by Point72 Ventures, with participation from Mastercard, Citi Ventures, and Reinventure.

“We were looking for investors who could become a catalyst in our global growth, and that is what we have found.”

Existing investors also participated in the round including Portag3 Ventures, TD Bank Group, and Information Venture Partners. This Series C brings Flybits’ total funding to date to $65 million CAD ($50 million USD). The startup said the investment will be used to expand teams, commercialize its portfolio, enhance the user experience, and develop a marketplace to forge partnerships between banks, FinTechs, and data providers.

“Banks are looking for ways to maximize their use of data and better engage with customers, but are having a hard time executing and scaling this on their own or by leveraging passive Personal Finance Management services,” said Hossein Rahnama, founder and CEO of Flybits. “Flybits enables banks to use real-time data and contextual intelligence to shift to those new models and go to market with them faster without over-reliance on their IT department. We were looking for investors who share this vision with us and could become a catalyst in our global growth, and that is what we have found.”

Flybits provides users with real-time information about what their audience is doing on mobile devices and allows businesses to respond accordingly. The platform uses customer data from proprietary and public sources, as well as device sensors. Flybits then combines this with contextual data, like risk profiles, as well as machine learning, allowing enterprises to drop content to the right user at the optimal time.

Founded in 2013, the company has closed several funding rounds, including a $4.5 million Series A in 2014, led by Vodafone Ventures, and a $6.5 million Series B in 2017, led by Information Venture Partners. The company has previously partnered with the City of Ottawa, TD Bank, and was incubated at the DMZ at Ryerson University. The startup’s founder, Rahnama, is an AI researcher and was named one of Canada’s Top 40 under 40 in 2017.

RELATED: Flybits’ Hossein Rahnama on the vertical shifts AI might enable for FinTech

New capital from the Series C will allow Flybits to expand the teams in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, and the US where the company’s co-founder, Gerti Dervishi, is growing the startup’s New York office. Flybits also has offices in London, England, and Redwood City, California.

“We believe that banks and other financial institutions are struggling to communicate with their customers about their products and services in the digital environment, and Flybits is the best technology to help,” said Tripp Shriner, partner at Point72 Ventures. “Flybits has built a superior end-to-end solution for personalization of the digital customer experience in financial services and we are pleased to partner with them and support their future growth.”

Flybits said in the last year, it has experienced a 300 percent growth in the business, adding that it will continue to hire across offices with a particular focus on solutions engineers, sales executives, business development representatives, and engineers to its team.

“Personalization is mission-critical for all [direct-to-consumer] businesses in the digital age. Flybits’ integrated platform allows financial services firms to offer contextualized experiences, driving product awareness and adding significant value to the lives of their customers,” said Ramneek Gupta, managing director and co-head of venture investing at Citi Ventures. “We look forward to partnering with Flybits in its next phase of growth as it continues to set the bar for hyper-personalized customer experiences.”

Image courtesy Flybits via Twitter

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.

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