Chinese tech giant Tencent takes stake in business finance firm Previse

Friday, April 22, 2022 10:58 a.m.

A logo of Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings is seen during the company’s fourth quarter earnings announcement in Hong Kong March 18, 2015. Tencent said its net profit was up 54% to 3, 82 billion dollars (23.81 billion yuan) in 2014 was helped by the “rapid development” of mobile games and social networks. AFP PHOTO / Philippe Lopez (Photo credit should read PHILIPPE LOPEZ/AFP/Getty Images)

Chinese tech giant Tencent has taken a stake in London-based business finance firm Previse as it accelerates its push into British fintech.

The £10m Series B funding round, led by Tencent, will value the business at around £65m, Sky News first reported.

Previse’s new funding follows a series of investments in UK tech companies, including backing digital lender Monzo in a $100m follow-on funding round in December that valued the company at 4 .5 billion dollars.

Tencent last month led a £136m seed round in London credit card startup Jeeves and recently backed Bristol-based company Ultraleap, which uses ultrasound to simulate touch.

Previse, led by founder Paul Christensen, specializes in automated invoice processing and has a host of big-name backers including MasterCard, Hambro Perks and listed fintech investor Augmentum Fintech.

Christensen recently criticized UK lenders for hindering access to finance in a letter to City AM, saying the banks’ procedures were “clumsy” and outdated.

“The models and procedures used by banks haven’t changed in decades,” he said. “This is the era of integrated finance – finance needs to be integrated into core business processes.”

Christensen called on the government to “put its money where it is” and create tech-driven solutions for businesses to access capital as Britain cements its status as a global tech hub.

Previse did not respond to request for comment.

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