UNL, an Amsterdam-based smart addressing platform for navigation and location-based services, has raised $2 million in seed funding to build the “Internet of Places” and bring the rest of the world’s population into the digital economy.

The round was co-led by fellow Dutch company HERE Technologies, which specialises in mapping and location solutions, and Elev8.vc, a Singapore-based deeptech VC fund. Other investors include Singapore’s SGInnovate, Amsterdam-based Venturerock and the US-headquartered SOSV. The Dutch startup graduated from SOSV’s Mobile Only Accelerator program one year ago.

In a “hyper-location-based economy,” UNL provides anyone with a unique address, making any physical spot a point of sale, delivery and payment. By adding a programmable layer to real-life locations, the startup claims it is building the Internet of Places.

“UNL is a whole new way to think about locations. It’s about economic impact and unlocking places to become the gravity points for location-based services,“ said Xander van der Heijden, CEO and founder of UNL. “And it’s about economic inclusion: bringing four billion unaddressed people into the global digital economy.”

“Most of the world doesn’t have an address or is poorly addressed,” said William Bao Bean, general partner at SOSV. “UNL’s ability to bring accurate location to developing and emerging markets will enable services from delivery to micro-loans for the next four billion internet users.”

The company will use its new funding to develop the technology’s core infrastructure as well as further expand operations in key global markets, starting with Asia.

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