Zurich-based fintech startup Relio has raised €3 million in a funding round aimed at supporting the launch of a digital payment account for business customers. The Swiss company is led by CEO Lav Odorovic, who previously founded Penta, a neobank for SMEs in Germany that has since been acquired by Qonto.
Relio is backed by new lead investor TX Ventures, alongside SIX Fintech Ventures, High-Tech Gründerfonds, F10, Elsa Invest, daFUND, QBIT Capital, and several undisclosed angel investors.
When it comes to the geography of banking, a few locales come to mind, perhaps most notably Switzerland. With some of the most stringent rules on the books coupled with renowned efficiency, the country has enjoyed a long run of prosperity and stability.
And it’s exactly this combination that Relio is tapping into, particularly in regards to preventing any shady business practices from occurring, namely that of money laundering, while at the same time getting business customers up and running under the banner of Swiss precision.
Relio’s first offer up from grabs will be a digital payment account for business customers built upon the company’s Anti-Money-Laundering (AML) tech stack, one that automates a number of compliance processes all the while managing and minimising criminal activies.
A portion of the underlying thinking behind Relio stems from the fact that while neobanks including Wise and Revolut have fundamentally changed the face of finance, one of the weakest links in the chain has been anti-money laundering. This comes down to the number of the inherent complexity of ownership structures, international money flows and business models that pose higher risks in terms of fraud and money laundering.
As a result, more often than not it can take customers weeks or sometimes months to open an account due to due diligence. Moving down the chain, this means that transactions and accounts can be, and quite often are, frozen as a preventive measure until they have been manually checked, resulting in business customers’ frustrations as they have salaries and invoices that need to be paid on time.
Relio’s automated compliance system performs these checks, all the while removing the element of human error.