Token, a San Francisco and London-based open banking platform, raised $16.5m in funding from prominent tech funds including Opera Tech Ventures, the venture arm of BNP Paribas, Octopus Ventures, and EQT Ventures, according to an announcement Tuesday.

This strategic round of funding comes on the heels of the company’s partnership with Mastercard. Token is working to develop a connectivity layer for the legacy payments processor’s open banking hub “that will help third parties establish and maintain communication with banks for data and/or payment,” said Token representative Erin Lovett. The partnership represents “the first movement in open banking by a large infrastructure provider.”

Combining open APIs, cryptographic security features, and programmable money to develop new banking applications, the company said it assists banks aggregate client account information from multiple external sources, initiate bank-direct payments, and reduce the cost of payment acceptance.

An API also provides compliance with PSD2 obligations, a regulatory directive in the EU.

Through SDK’s, Token removes the need for businesses to store customer or bank details on site and integrates with commercial websites to provide a ‘one click’ checkout. It also collects customer spend data.

Apart from the data platform, Token has developed an eponymous cryptocurrency, Token X, which they claim is the first stablecoin designed for “instant payment execution.” It runs on Stellar and Ethereum, but is designed to be ledger agnostic. In function, TokenX performs like Facebook’s Libra.

The token is backed 1:1 by fiat money and has been independently audited to confirm that assets in escrow match the outstanding stablecoins, the company alleges. Additionally, transactions using TokenX are screened for AML and sanctions, and those purchasing or redeeming the currency are meant to follow KYC processes.

Token was founded in 2015 by Steve Kirsch and currently works with 4,001 banks, including Tandem Bank, Think Money Group, An Post, Sberbank Croatia and Slovenia, and Khaleeji Commercial Bank.

The firm raised $18.5 million in Series A in 2017, and an additional $16.5 million in June 2019. Lovett said Token plans on doing a Series B round early next year.

The latest round of funding will support Token’s expansion and connectivity to banks across Europe, in both open banking and digital money solutions.

Coin bank image via CoinDesk archives

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