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Upgrade Closes $105 Million Series E Round at $3.325 Billion Valuation

Company will use proceeds to fuel next phase of financial innovation that benefits consumers

SAN FRANCISCO, August 11, 2021-- Upgrade, Inc., a fintech company that offers affordable and responsible credit to mainstream consumers, today announced that it closed a $105 million Series E round at a $3.325 billion pre-money valuation led by Koch Disruptive Technologies (KDT) with participation from new and existing investors including BRV and Ventura Capital advised by Julius Baer.

"We are thrilled to partner with KDT," said Renaud Laplanche, co-founder and CEO of Upgrade. "We have experienced unprecedented growth and profitability this year, and the additional capital will enable us to further establish Upgrade Card as a mainstream credit card and continue designing innovative products that benefit consumers".

KDT is an investment arm of Koch Industries, the largest private company in the United States. Upgrade offers products that are designed to give consumers more value and a better experience than those offered by traditional banks. Upgrade Card, the company's flagship product, promotes responsible credit by turning every balance into a fixed-rate installment plan, and by paying rewards to cardholders as they pay down their balance.

"We are seeing rapid innovation in banking, and believe fintech, and neobanks in particular, will profoundly transform the banking industry to the greater benefit of consumers," said Byron Knight, Managing Director at KDT. "Upgrade has proven success in designing products that deliver more value and a better experience to consumers, and we believe they are uniquely suited to be a market leader."

Upgrade has delivered over $7 billion in affordable credit to consumers through cards and loans since inception in 2017, and is on track to deliver $7 billion in 2021 alone. Upgrade debuted a rewards checking account earlier this year that offers 2% cashback rewards to consumers on common everyday expenses. The company also launched in July Upgrade Bitcoin Rewards Card, a credit card that pays rewards in bitcoin rather than cash, allowing consumers to enjoy the potential upside of bitcoin without putting their own money at risk.

Financial Technology Partners LP and FTP Securities LLC (FT Partners) served as the exclusive financial and strategic advisor to Upgrade in this transaction.

About Upgrade

Upgrade has delivered over $7 billion in affordable and responsible credit to mainstream consumers through cards and loans since inception in 2017. It also offers rewards checking accounts with debit cards that pay 2% rewards on everyday transactions and monthly subscriptions. Upgrade is headquartered in San Francisco, California, with an operations center in Phoenix, Arizona and a technology center in Montreal, Canada. Loans and credit lines are issued, and banking services are provided, by Cross River Bank, a New Jersey State Chartered Commercial Bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender Cross River Bank, a New Jersey State Chartered Commercial Bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender and Blue Ridge Bank, National Association. Upgrade Card is issued by Sutton Bank, Member FDIC, pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc. Rewards associated with the Upgrade Card, when applicable, are provided by Upgrade, Inc. More information is available at: https://www.upgrade.com.


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