Allianz’s technology investment arm is committing $75 million to WeLab, a Hong Kong-based fintech focused on virtual banking, consumer financing and other related digital services. The deal also includes a strategic partnership.
The insurer’s Allianz X digital investment unit committed the money as part of WeLab’s Series C financing round. Allianz said the company is now one of a number of Asian startups in its investment portfolio.
Plans call for using the funds to fuel WeLab’s further expansion and propel the ongoing development of its technology platform. As well, Allianz and WeLab are now deepening their strategic cooperation. The companies expect to jointly develop digital products and services in areas including wealth management, starting in Hong Hong. Eventually, they are eying an expansion of their cooperation into Indonesia and Southeast Asia.
WeLab first launched in 2013. Its services include digital banking services and loans for private customers, a digital lending platform to connect lenders and borrowers, and a number of technology-driven services to support financial institutions in their lending processes. WeLab currently operates in Hong Kong, mainland China, and Indonesia. The company touts nearly 50 million retail customers and 600 corporate customers. Its WeLab Bank in Hong Kong launched in 2019 and is one of the first fully-licensed digital banks in Asia, the company claims.
WeLab’s technology includes a proprietary risk management system based on artificial intelligence and a patented privacy computing product that ensures the secure transfer of sensitive data.
Allianz X’s other recent Asian investments have focused on telemedicine company Halodoc; digital real estate brokerage 99.co, and GoJek, a digital company that offers a wide range of services on its platform, from taxi rides to food delivery and mobile payments. BIMA, a digital insurance provider in emerging and developing markets, is another Allianz X portfolio company with extensive business in Asia, Allianz noted.