GIC Leads $500 Million Funding into Consumer Credit Unicorn Affirm

The Singapore sovereign wealth fund previously invested in the fintech startup from PayPal co-founder Max Levchin.

A Singapore sovereign wealth fund has led a $500 million funding round into Affirm, the San Francisco fintech startup begun by PayPal co-founder Max Levchin that aims to cut out credit cards from online shopping. 

GIC, formerly known as the Government of Singapore Investment Corp., and Durable Capital Partners are returning investors into the Bay Area consumer credit unicorn, the sovereign fund said last week. 

“We are pleased to support Affirm as they continue to strengthen their offering in the consumer finance space,” Choo Yong Cheen, private equity investment chief at GIC, said in a statement. 

The Singapore sovereign wealth fund previously led a $200 million Series E funding round into Affirm in 2017. GIC devotes about 10% to 15% of its portfolio to private equity. 

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After reporting dismal earnings in July, GIC reported that it will continue to eye diversification through long-term growth trends, including taking stakes in digital commerce companies. 

Other investors in the Series G funding round include Lightspeed Venture Partners, Wellington Management, Baillie Gifford, Spark Capital, Founders Fund, and Fidelity Management & Research. To date, the Bay Area startup has raised about $1.3 billion from investors. 

“We’re excited about this vote of confidence from both new and existing investors as we advance our mission to build honest financial products that improve lives,” founder Levchin said in a statement. 

Affirm, which functions as a financial lender of installment loans, allows online shoppers to buy now and pay later. The firm, which aims to become as ubiquitous as credit cards, says the product will never charge shoppers hidden or late fees. Its merchant list includes Shopify and Walmart. 

In addition to marketing and hiring, the startup plans to use the fresh round of capital to fund the development of new products, including an interest-free, biweekly payment product for transactions as low as $50. 

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