Freelancer banking platform Lili has scored $10m in its seed round

Banking app for freelancers Lili has closed its seed round on $10m to support the expansion of the team.

Group 11 led the investment, with additional contributions coming from Foundation Capital, AltaIR Capital, Primary Venture Partners and Torch Capital.

Capital from the round will be used to expand Lili’s product, marketing and operations teams.

New York-headquartered Lili combines banking services with real-time expense tracking, tax tools and financial insights to better help freelancers control their finances.

There are around 60 million freelancers in the US and make up around 35% of the American workforce, the company claims. Lili offers them free access to 38,000 ATMs across the US, no account fees, minimum balance requirements, overdraft fees or foreign transaction fees.

The banking platform also offers free expense management tools to track and categorise spending, tax savings tools, a Visa business debit card, early direct deposit, real-time alerts and insights on income and expenses, and more.

Group 11 founding partner Dovi Frances said, “Lili is redefining banking for freelancers and we’re thrilled to be partnering with the team. As the future of work continues to evolve more quickly than ever in these uncertain times, Lilac and Liran’s forward-looking vision is changing how modern workers manage their finances, while saving them valuable time and money.”

The company was founded in 2018 by CEO Lilac Bar David and CTO Liran Zelkha who decided to build a bank that supports independent workers’ financial plan points, after experiencing first-hand, the difficulty freelancers go through with finance.

This is the second digital bank to be created by Bar David and Zelkha, who previously founded Pepper, a challenger bank in Israel. They helped grow Pepper to more than 200 employees and built the banking platform scratch including the mobile payments, banking service and investment services.

Lili co-founder and CEO Lilac Bar David said, “We’ve built the only solution that truly enables freelancers to holistically manage their bank accounts and their expenses for work and life, saving them up to 60 hours and $1,700 per year.

“We’ve analysed the challenges of the modern worker in all aspects of banking, taxes, expenses and savings and have created an easy-to-use mobile app that helps them thrive in today’s ever-changing work environment.”

Earlier in the week, fellow US challenger bank Varo Money closed a $240m Series D round as it moves closer to its national charter approval.

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