Korean Fintech Giant Seeks to Raise $200 Million

Viva Republica, the company behind the South Korean fintech giant, Toss, is looking to raise $200 million, Bloomberg reports.

The Seoul-based company has purportedly hopped on the funding circuit to raise cash for its expansion to online banking and securities trading. Lee Seung-gun, founder of Viva Republica, said that the startup hopes to complete the round by mid-2020.

“At a time like this, a company that grows fast and makes profit will get more money,” Lee, the 38-year-old dentist turned startup founder, said in an interview. “Our goal is to become a finance super app, making people open Toss for any financial activities without question.”

Toss, South Korea’s largest fintech startup, was founded by Lee back in 2011. It now boasts over 10 million monthly active users and nearly $4 billion worth of monthly transactions.

The company has set its sights on online banking and securities brokerage, betting that it can lure half of South Korea’s population – roughly 25 million – to its app within the next two years.

To help make that happen, Lee said that he will hire 200 staff for the online banking unit and about 90 for the brokerage.

He also said that he’s looking to expand outside of Korea – Southeast Asia and Japan, in particular – and to go public in South Korea, Hong Kong, and the United States. He estimates the latter to happen in two to three years.

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