All-in-one finance solution for SMEs and freelancers, handling everything from everyday banking and financing to bookkeeping and spend management, Qonto, has announced its intentions to acquire Berlin’s competing service, Penta. The financial terms and conditions of the deal were not disclosed.
Founded in mid-2016, Penta, which is led former Deutsche Bank exec Markus Pertlwieser, was acquired by its investors Finleap, HV Capital, RTP Ventures, ABN Amro, and VR Ventures in 2019 with founders, management, and employees retaining a minority shareholding.
According to a release none of these existing investors are exiting, and there will be no changes in management at Penta.
As of late February of this year, Bloomberg reported that the firm was looking to raise new funds at a valuation of $400 to $500 million, but skittish investors failed to pony up the cash, weary of a significant “down round”.
When pressed on the matter, Qonto representatives were quick to cull this theory, “Both companies are seeking to create more value at a faster pace for customers, not just in Germany but across Qonto's other markets. They share the same mission, culture and robust business models. The acquisition of Penta will enable Qonto to significantly grow its position as the leading finance solution for SMEs and freelancers in Europe with more than 300,000 customers in France, Germany, Spain as well as Italy, with around 900 employees in five locations.”
When Qonto raised €486 million in a Tiger Global-led Series D funding round at a €4.4 billion valuation back in January of this year, they made it very clear that M&A activities were very much on the radar. With that in mind, perhaps the Penta acquisition is not the only purchasing power the Parisians are loaded with and actively seeking to put to good use.
The deal is expected to close in the coming weeks, subject to the obligatory regulatory approvals.
On the acquisition Penta CEO Pertlwieser commented, “Lukas Zörner and his co-founders have written a real fintech success story. With the combination of increasing customer numbers and rising revenues, we have gained even more substance in the past 18 months. We are very excited that we now have the chance to actively shape digital banking for business customers in Europe as a team with Qonto."