Before the Covid-19 pandemic, the small Dutch payments startup Mollie was not known by many. Today it is the third-largest fintech in Europe.
Mollie was founded in 2004 by the Dutch entrepreneur Adriaan Mol. In September 2020, 16 years later, Mollie reached a value of $1 billion, becoming a fintech “unicorn.” Less than a year after that, the company raised $800 million in a mega financing round on June 22, 2021, putting the company at a net worth of over $6.5 billion. This was just enough to place Mollie at third-largest fintech unicorn in all of Europe, following its competition Checkout.com, according to CBS Insights.
Founder Adriaan Mol said that the company was originally a text messaging business that soon pivoted to payments after trying to integrate its system for clients to pay their invoices.
Shane Happach recently appointed CEO of Mollie, shared that before taking external funding in 2019, the company opted to grow organically. The decision to allow external funding is easily one of the reasons that they are now the third-largest fintech in Europe. The turning point for Mollie was in 2020 when the company took part in a financing round led by TCV — a growth-state tech investor — and raised $100 million. Following this deal, every investor wanted in on the company.
The fintech world has some fierce competition. Mollies’ greatest rivals have been Stripe, Square, and Adyen due to their shared desire to have the largest share in the market. As stated in a CNBC report, Founder Mol speaks highly of his company in comparison to its European rivals saying that Mollie is more “localized” than Stripe and does not target enterprise clients as Adyen and Checkout.com do.
In terms of its American rivals — Paypal, Mastercard, and Visa — Mollie takes a different approach than them as well. The company focuses on smaller businesses in Europe in contrast to its rivals. CEO Happach comments “a lot of investors don’t have a bet on Europe. Mollie’s one of those unique assets that offer exposure.”
With European tech rising so greatly, there is a lot of pressure on the future. French President Emmanual Macron speaks on this, saying that by 2030 he hopes for Europe to produce 10 companies worth 100 billion Euros. So far this year, European startups have raised over 45.9 billion, greatly exceeding the investment for 2020 as a whole. Paul Morrissey, Blackstone Growths European investing believes that “this investment underlines Blackstone’s confidence in Europe as a place for high growth companies to thrive.”
Adejumo, Oluwapelumi. “Mollie Now Third-Biggest Fintech in Europe.” Coinspeaker, Coinspeaker, 22 June 2021, www.coinspeaker.com/mollie-third-biggest-fintech-europe/.