Flanks, the Spanish wealthtech has become the first aggregator specializing in securities accounts in Europe. Now has raised €2.3 million in an investment round led by JME Ventures and SeedRocket 4Founders Capital. Other investors have also participated as the business angel group Lanai Partners, which invests in disruptive and scalable startups.
The firm is chaired and co-founded by Álvaro Morales, former CEO of Banco Santander International. Who, in addition to heading Banco Santander International, was also responsible for the Group’s global private banking business. Together with two computer engineers as co-founders, Joaquim de la Cruz CEO of the fintech, who led several areas of information extraction in startups. And Sergio Lao CTO (Chief Technology Officer) of the cybersecurity specialist firm.
Flanks provides a fully digital securities account aggregator, whose model is aimed at financial advisors and broker-dealers, family offices, roboadvisors and private banking divisions of financial institutions. The firm already has more than 7,000 aggregated portfolios spread across nearly 200 entities and has positioned its business at break-even in less than a year.
According to Samuel Gil, Investment Director of the JME Ventures fund; “We invest in scalable projects and attractive entrepreneurs, considering people as a differential business value. The case of Flanks is a clear example, its magnificent evolution in Spain and its penetration in four other markets through innovative and disruptive technology together with the deep knowledge of the financial sector by the best team with great capacity for execution and transformation”.
Opening up the market
As the first company specialising in securities accounts in Europe, it is opening up the sector of open banking applied to wealth management, which could be called ‘open wealth’. Market leader, it already has among its clients more than 30% of the financial institutions with the highest volume in Spain, according to “Top Private Banking Fundspeople”.
In addition, the firm performs more than 200,000 portfolio updates aggregated across nearly 200 entities in Spain, Andorra, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Monaco and the US, including Banks, Independent Financial Advisors and Family Offices.
On the other hand, the Bank of Spain’s authorisation in May this year of Flanks as an account information service provider is a guarantee of quality. This is enabling the firm to accelerate its growth both in the Spanish market as well as in the European, as it is already present in five markets; Spain, Portugal, Andorra, Switzerland and Luxembourg as well as the USA.
According to Álvaro Morales, co-founder and executive president of Flanks; “We are proud to have the backing of investors such as JME Ventures and SeedRocket 4Founders Capital” and continues; “Future success in wealth management is all about making the most of innovation to gain efficiency and, at the same time, improve the quality of service levels to investors”.
The Spanish firm provides an all-digital securities account aggregator, whose model is aimed at specialists, professionals and companies in various branches of wealth management. An example of some of the functions developed by the fintech is the application that allows financial advisors to manage the portfolios of all clients from a single platform, even if they have accounts in different entities.
It bases its model on the growth of its customers, and has therefore created a ´pay-per-use model´ that allows the service to be launched with minimal economic and integration friction.
An example of this is Wealth Solutions, a financial institution regulated in Spain and the United States and specialised in private banking. Today Flanks has processed a large part of its data. Even beyond aggregation, the firm has also created innovative use cases, such as the ease of investment transfers already used by one of the largest roboadvisors in Spain, Indexa Capital.
Since its beginnings in 2019 –following the entry into force of the legislation PSD2– the firm identified an unmet need in the market and today has become the leader in this segment in Europe.
Investment round goals
Given the success achieved by Flanks in the Spanish market and part of Europe, one of the goals after this investment round is to continue with its ambitious Expansion Plan.
Regarding to this matter, Joaquim de la Cruz, co-founder and CEO of Flanks, points out; “our goal for 2022 is to enter countries where the wealth management market is voluminous such as he United Kingdom, Germany and Mexico, as well as to establish the business in the six markets where we are already leaders”.
With this vehicle, the Spanish open wealth firm plans to position itself in these new markets as a leading provider of specialised investment finance aggregation. In addition, the location of Barcelona as headquarters will help to attract the best international talent as the firm plans – in the short term – to triple its current workforce to establish itself as a leader in six markets.
Flanks anticipates exponential growth in market share in one year and a six-fold increase in turnover during the next year and a half. The firm also plans to continue to evolve its technology and advance use cases that bring greater value to its customers.
Successful US model
This disruptive model has its origins in the US with the company Addepar, specialised in analysis and aggregation of private banking data since 2013, which already aggregates €2 trillion in wealth through the platform.
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