Cork-based payment platform Trustap raises $3.4m in seed funding

7 Apr 2022

From left: Ignite director at UCC Eamon Curtin, UCC lecturer Dr Gillian Barrett and Trustap founder Conor Lyden. Image: Tomas Tyner, UCC

The Irish start-up aims to create new features and extend marketplace partnerships globally to meet increasing customer demand.

Payments start-up Trustap has raised $3.4m in seed funding to boost its growth and develop new features.

The funding round was lead by MiddleGame Ventures with co-investment from Act Venture Capital and Atlantic Bridge. This follows initial funding from early backers such Liam Casey, who was also an early investor in Stripe.

Trustap said the latest investment will help it roll out new features and extend marketplace partnerships globally to meet increasing customer demand.

“This fundraise is an important step for Trustap and will enable us to leverage the network and experience of our investor base to accelerate our growth in 2022 and beyond,” said founder and CEO Conor Lyden.

Trustap aims to give buyers and sellers confidence when engaging in an online or face-to-face transaction with someone they don’t know.

It has developed a platform that combines payments powered by Stripe with a transaction management system. When a purchase is made with Trustap, the buyer’s money is held in a safe hold account until all transaction milestones are met.

Despite the global rise in e-commerce and digital payments, Trustap said that buyers may be reluctant to transact with sellers unknown to them.

The former Start-up of the Week is aiming to provide a transparent platform for buyers and sellers. The buyer’s funds are kept secure until they are happy with the purchase, while the seller gets transparency over where funds are being sent and the buyer’s identity.

“The reality is that the money is only ever half of any transaction between two parties,” Lyden said. “The other half is usually a product that has to be delivered or a service that has to be completed.

“Rather than just holding the money, we manage the entire transaction from start to finish to ensure each milestone is successfully completed.”

Lyden developed the initial concept for Trustap while studying at University College Cork. He went on to participate in the university’s graduate business incubator, Ignite, and officially founded the company in 2017.

The Cork-based company has seen rapid growth over the last year, as it more than tripled its workforce. It is currently live in more than 40 countries worldwide, and has partnered with large online marketplaces such as Malaysian player Mudah.

“The company is well positioned to play an integral role in unlocking friction around marketplace transactions by providing confidence to both sellers and buyers,” MiddleGame Ventures co-founder Patrick Pinschmidt said.

“In competitive online markets with thin margins, the Trustap platform differentiates itself by reducing the incidence of abandoned transactions and offering revenue opportunities from successful transactions, as well as better data tools for business customers.”

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic