French Neobank Unicorn Qonto in Advanced Talks to Buy Berlin-Based Neobank Penta
Update: Penta and Qonto made their deal public on July 22nd, 2022.
Paris-based Qonto just talked exclusively about their market entry in Germany with us. We also covered Penta extensively from their very first moments on. Now news emerged (by a usually well-informed German fintech blog) that Qonto is in talks to buy Penta and the deal could close in a few days.
Penta was the first neobank in Germany focusing on SMEs . We covered them extensively in the past (especially interviewing Luka), and we may have had their first English interview ever. They got acquired by Berlin-based fintech incubator finleap in April 2019. Until then Penta had raised 82,8 m US$ from 13 Investors in funding (to Series B). finleap has also been an investor in their Series B, before they bought them.
News emerged in February 2022 that Penta was on the hunt for more funding (assuming Series C) with a 500 mn US$ valuation target. The private and public markets across the world have turned spectacularly since. Even unicorns like Solarisbank realized this and are now considering (as well) an outright sale, even to PE funds. Therefore it is not surprising that Penta took a similar route to evaluate all options. After Qonto announced their 480+ M Euros Series D in January, with expansion plans in Germany, it was a no-brainer for Penta to talk to them.
In our exclusive interview with Qonto’s Head of Germany, we already heard a lot of similar positions on client-centric SME and startup banking.
It is the personal opinion of the author that both companies could be a great fit.
You can learn more about Penta and Qonto in our interviews below.
First Penta Interview
Second Penta Interview
Note the publication time stamps are all from the migration to a new hoster in January 2019