Small-to medium-sized organisations are one of the most important parts of Southeast Asia’s economy, but numerous have difficulty protecting growth capital from standard banks. Validus wishes to repair the financing space with its peer-to-peer financing platform, which connects recognized lending institutions with SMEs. The Singapore-based start-up revealed today that it has raised $20 million for its ongoing Series B+ round.

The funding was co-led by Vertex Growth fund and Kuok Group’s Orion Fund, which is handled by K3 Venture Partners. Returning financiers in the round include FMO, the international development bank of the Netherlands; Vertex Ventures Southeast Asia and India; Openspace Ventures; AddVentures; and VinaCapital Ventures.

This brings Validus’ overall raised to about $40 million considering that it was founded in 2015, including a $15.2 million Series B round revealed last year.

After getting its capital markets services license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore in December 2017, Validus introduced services in Indonesia and Vietnam and states it has lent over $315 million to services up until now. Its plans for its Series B+ round include expanding into Thailand during the last quarter of this year. Validus’ credit risk model examines information from invoices, agreements and capital.

Co-founder and COO Nikhilesh Goel states that during the COVID-19 pandemic, the business has actually seen more need for short-term financing, with a 50% year-over-year boost for credit-approved unsecured loans over the previous few months.

Regardless of the impact of the pandemic on small companies, loan efficiency has held steady, he added, since Validus concentrates on corporate supplier financing for SMEs whose end-buyers are big corporations or government-linked entities.

Validus likewise prepares to supply financing to SMEs that are on the frontlines in the battle against COVID-19, including working capital for SMEs in the health care and pharmaceutical markets, and logistics and cleaning services.

“Through working carefully with business partners and investors on the platform, we likewise intend to support SMEs who are pivoting their services to adapt to services and products that are needed in this time,” Goel stated. “In the last month, we have actually disbursed multiple such loans averaging $250,000 to $500,000, to support SMEs’ efforts in satisfying the demand for face masks and other protective gear in short supply.”

In a press statement, MX Kuok of K3 Ventures said, “We are highly impressed by the management and depth of credit management experience at Validus. The team has actually demonstrated the distinct capability to capture important information points, integrated with comprehensive device learning capabilities, to determine high-potential SMEs that may have failed the spaces of the traditional banking design.”

Article curated by RJ Shara from Source. RJ Shara is a Bay Area Radio Host (Radio Jockey) who talks about the startup ecosystem – entrepreneurs, investments, policies and more on her show The Silicon Dreams. The show streams on Radio Zindagi 1170AM on Mondays from 3.30 PM to 4 PM.