London-based fintech startup Aire aims to make credit fairer for consumers, and more valuable to lenders. Aire’s API integrates into existing platforms, providing virtual interviews and using machine learning to create personalised credit scores based on multiple factors in addition to credit history, including financial maturity, career, and lifestyle.
The startup has just raised €9.6 in Series B funding, led by Crane Venture Partners with participation from Experian Ventures and Orange Digital Ventures, which it will use to expand into new markets, particularly the US.
“Aire is built on the premise that empowering consumers to play an active role in their credit assessment is the only way to give lenders a comprehensive view with which to make a decision,” said Aire Co-Founder and CEO, Aneesh Varma. “Since launching five years ago we have come a long way in bringing along the credit ecosystem: FCA regulation; scalable technology; proven uplift for lending partners; and funding. Today’s announcement is a significant milestone in the Aire journey and showcases how much the market is paying attention, with the support of the largest credit bureau. This Series B funding will allow us to push the Aire philosophy further into new markets, such as the US, as well as new sectors.”
Founded in 2014, Aire’s algorithmic model has so far scored over $10 billion in credit across various categories. Helping lenders access more customers without increasing their risk, Aire has seen credit approvals increase by up to 19%.
Since receiving Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) approval two years ago, the startup has grown from eight people to a company with almost 40 employees. Along the way, it has forged alliances with notable financial institutions such as Toyota Financial Services and online retailer N Brown, along with high street banks.
“We’ve worked closely with the Aire team since inception, investing in the company based on our firm belief in their vision to reimagine credit decisioning for the 21st century,” said Krishna Visvanathan, founding partner at Crane Venture Partners. “Aire’s unique contextual decisioning methodology combines direct consumer engagement, new data sources and its dynamic algorithmic model to provide lenders with a better way to evaluate and make credit decisions.”