Fynanaz Raises $6.5 Million

Fynanaz Inc., a New York-based provider of private student lending platforms, has raised $6.5 million in Series A funding. Draper Fisher Jurvetson and DFJ Gotham co-led the round, and were joined by Brazos Group, Zelkova Ventures and JBR Media Ventures.


Fynanz, Inc., the financial technology company that provides fully integrated, turn-key private student lending platforms, today announced that it has closed $6.5M in Series A funding from a group of investors led by Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ), a leading global venture capital firm (based in Menlo Park, CA) and DFJ Gotham Ventures (based in New York, NY), with participation from The Brazos Group (based in Waco, TX), Zelkova Ventures (based in New York, NY) and JBR Media Ventures (based in Chevy Chase, MD). Fynanz will use the funds for the continued national expansion of www.cuStudentLoans.org, the leading credit union private student lending marketplace, and the development of additional lending programs including financial literacy initiatives. The financing follows a previous investment led by DFJ Gotham Ventures that also included Brazos and Zelkova.

“Our current credit union partners are very committed to the private student loan market and Fynanz looks forward to expanding our credit union network nationally,” said Vince Passione, CEO & Founder of Fynanz. “We are pleased to be working with DFJ and the other members of this investment group.”

Private student loans are used to fill the funding gap that remains for many students after exhausting all other forms of financial aid such as grants, scholarships and federal student loans. Escalating tuition costs and nominal increases in federal student loan limits have helped the private student loan market grow by more than 500% over the past 10 years – from $3 billion in 1997-1998 to $22.8 billion in 2007-2008.

Josh Stein, Managing Director of DFJ, commented on his firm’s participation saying, “We believe that the private student marketplace and the technology developed by Fynanz significantly diversifies and enhances a credit union’s portfolio. Fynanz is also unique in the fact that their programs help improve the borrower’s financial discipline and responsibility.”

Thatcher Bell, Principal of DFJ Gotham Ventures, added, “Given the wide range of economic pressures facing many American families today, the need for private student loans is greater than ever. Fynanz and cuStudentloans.org bring a turn-key solution that allows financial institutions to easily enter the student loan market. Students stand to benefit greatly from this new source of private student loans.”

Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati, the premier provider of legal services to technology, life sciences, and growth enterprises worldwide, represented Fynanz in the Series A round of funding.

About Fynanz, Inc.

Fynanz is a leading technology provider of turn-key private student lending networks and solutions. Fynanz pioneered the innovative technology platform that easily puts lenders into the private student lending business and the technology is simple to implement and customize, without the need to purchase or install any software. This end-to-end integrated solution includes complete origination, underwriting, servicing and marketing. Fynanz powers www.cuStudentLoans.org, the industry’s leading private lending marketplace, and helps credit unions of all asset sizes and fields of membership monetize private student lending by attracting younger members and growing their membership base. Fynanz currently serves more than 30 credit unions nationwide. Visit www.fynanz.com for more information or call 1-800-881-8985.

About Draper Fisher Jurvetson

Draper Fisher Jurvetson (“DFJ”) backs extraordinary entrepreneurs everywhere who set out to change the world. DFJ achieves its mission through its DFJ Global Network of Partner Funds. Together, DFJ and the Network manage over $6B and have made more than 600 investments on four continents. With a 24-year history of success across diverse sectors and market conditions, DFJ has led the way investing in emerging technologies, from the Internet and life sciences to clean energy and nanotechnology. DFJ has been proud to back over 500 companies across many sectors including such industry changing successes such as Hotmail (acquired by MSFT), Baidu (BIDU), Skype (acquired by EBAY), United Online (UNTD), Overture (acquired by YHOO), Athenahealth (ATHN), EnerNOC (ENOC), TicketsNow (acquired by TicketMaster), Feedburner (acquired by Google), Interwoven (IWOV), Four11 (acquired by YHOO), Parametric (PMTC), and Digidesign (acquired by AVID). For more information, please visit www.dfj.com.

About DFJ Gotham Ventures

DFJ Gotham Ventures invests in technology companies that are revolutionizing their industries. DFJ Gotham partners with extraordinary teams of entrepreneurs to build strong and successful businesses that make a huge impact in their markets. DFJ Gotham takes pride in being an active partner, leveraging its experience, knowledge and relationships to provide substantial value to its portfolio companies. DFJ Gotham Ventures is proud to have backed such category leaders as Massive (acquired by MSFT), XOsoft (acquired by CA), Ingenio (acquired by AT&T), Mimeo.com and ViVOtech, among many others. For more information, please visit www.dfjgotham.com.