Online lender SoFi closes $500m funding round led by Qatar Investment Authority

The online lending company Social Finance, commonly known as SoFi, has hit records by raising $500 million in its latest funding round. Wednesday’s funding which was led by Qatar has been public for some time.

The half-a-billion dollar proceeds from the funding will be invested for growth of the startup as SoFi looks to use the cash to strengthen its $2.3 billion balance sheet.

SoFi is currently valued at $4.3 billion. This is close to the valuation it acquired two years ago in a funding round which was led by Silver Lake. SoFa’s new investor Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) is Qatar-based private equity and sovereign wealth fund.

Data from PitchBook shows that the startup has assets under management totaling $12 billion. Moreover, it has investments in Uber, HelloFresh, and Flipkart.

PithchBook also reported that SoFi had won $1.9 billion from SoftBank Capital as well as Peter Thiel in the past before the Wednesday’s round. It is reported that SoFi had plans to raise funds in the month of April.

There has been a rising interest in private capital investment and therefore SoFa’s funding round has come at the right time. Venture Capital investments moved to personal finance gaining $4.4 billion last year. This was an increment from 2013 less than $1 billion.

SoFi has launched many products this year. It launched a cash account SoFi Money which has 2.25 percent APY.  It also partnered with Coinbase and launched a crypto trading. Other services include free SoFi branded exchange-traded funds and the awaiting credit card.

The CEO of SoFi Anthony Noto said that the company has put strategize that have seen it upgrade from desktop lending startup to a “broad-based, mobile-first financial platform” which makes it possible for its users to get loans, do investment, save, as well as ensuring the security of their money.

Established in 2011, the company’s initial goal was millennial student-loan refinancing. However growth has seen it expand to private and mortgage loans, provision of wealth management services, as well as mortgage, refinances. It commands7.5 million registered users as well as over 700,000 members.