London-based fintech firm kennek has raised a $4.5 million pre-seed funding round.
The company has developed an end-to-end operating system designed to streamline the operations for lenders, credit investors, corporates, and servicers in the alternative credit sector.
In its first year of trading, kennek has already hired 20 fulltime staff, and launched a plug-and-play operating system that caters for a broad variety of lenders and credit products. The company’s UK operation has already secured commercial wins with clients operating the areas of SME loans, R&D credit and Commercial Real Estate.
kennek was founded in 2021 by Thibault Lancksweert, Edmund Parsons and Xavier De Pauw, to solve two major pain points: operational scalability for lenders and investors; and more efficient funding of credits. The funding round was led by Dutch Founders Fund, ffVC and Plug and Play Ventures.
De Pauw, who previously worked in structured finance at Merrill Lynch and built challenger bank MeDirect, has first-hand experience with the challenges faced by lenders in the capital markets.
With decades of experience in the credit sector, the kennek founders could see many operational pain points and challenges facing lenders. The alternative lending industry is still largely run on manual workflows and with data living in spreadsheets.
As a result of these outdated processes, lenders are not cost-efficient and struggle to access funding from institutional investors who require reliable and connected data, and robust and scalable processes. This insight became the foundation of kennek, a vertically integrated SaaS that solves these multiple pain points all at once.
The ultimate goal of kennek is to make scalable and robust lending infrastructure accessible to everyone in order to facilitate more funding to flow to the real economy.
kennek is working with existing lenders and banks, but also with new lenders that can be launched efficiently with kennek’s complete lender-in-a-box. As such, kennek plays the role of lender incubator offering credit expertise, the full operating system and access to institutional funding.
Corporates also use kennek to offer embedded credit and to manage their receivables financing.
Laurens Groenendijk of Dutch Founders Fund said: “De Pauw, Lancksweert and Parsons bring such varied and necessary experience together to address the inefficiencies of lending,”
“The uniquely designed product and lending rails that kennek is creating will make it much easier for lenders worldwide to launch, operate and scale,” he added.
Xavier De Pauw, co-founder and CEO of kennek said:
“Our goal is to create a single point of truth for all stakeholders in the lending value chain,”
“This will help drive capital from institutional investors to the real economy, such as SMEs, property developers, and corporates.”