Cushon, Target Group and Aegiq Grab Funding

London, Cardiff and Sheffield are alive with money and aspirations.

Workplace savings firm Cushon, business processing & software provider Target Group and quantum photonics platform Aegiq have got tech funding.

London-based Cushon has closed a £35 million fundraising round and announced its third acquisition, as part of its ambitions in workplace pensions and savings.

Target Group has revealed a rebrand and a £10 million investment by its parent company Tech Mahindra into its operations and technology infrastructure.

Aegiq secured seed investment from an investor syndicate led by High-Tech Gründerfonds, with participation of Deepbridge Capital and business angel investors. Together, with existing funding from Innovate UK, the seed investment brings Aegiq’s total available funding to over £3.5 million.

Cushon’s Milestone

The funding was provided entirely by Cushon’s existing investors, including fintech venture company Augmentum Fintech, and AshGrove Capital, an independent pan-European specialty lending firm. Other companies in Augmentum’s portfolio include Tide, interactive investor (which abrdn plans to buy) and Habito.

Ben Pollard, CEO and Founder of Cushon, comments: “Right now, workplace pensions are simply too complicated, boring, and disconnected from things people care deeply about. Cushon is here to change that, and today’s announcement is a hugely significant milestone for us.”

The total amount raised by Cushon over the last two years stands at £61 million with the acquisition making Cushon “the fifth largest master trust pension provider in the UK” and doubling its assets under management from £840 million to £1.7 billion across 400,000 customers.

The fintech firm is active in the B2C and B2B sectors. For example, it works with partners to bring its proposition to their clients. Cushon offers a suite of workplace ISAs and pensions in an app.

This funding will be used to develop its mobile app, operational capability and for organic growth.

According to the company, the UK pensions market is the third largest in the world – with a total of £2.58 trillion invested.

No name was mentioned but this is Cushon’s third master trust acquisition in two years. When completed, the deal brings Cushon’s total assets under management (AUM) including ISA savings to around £1.7 billion – a 102% increase on current AUM – with annual inflows of more than £300 million. Completion of the acquisition, which is expected in Q1 2022, is subject to regulatory approval.

On Target 

Target is based in Cardiff and has unveiled its “new purpose driven brand”.

Stuart Anderson, Chief Commercial Officer at Target Group, says the company has “now significantly accelerated our capabilities in automation, AI, big data, and digital transformation”.

Over 50 financial services providers use Target to manage their lending and investment portfolios including Shawbrook Bank, Goldman Sachs, Yorkshire Building Society, Credit Suisse, Barclays and Santander.

According to the firm, its fintech platform manages assets in excess of £25 billion, enabling its clients to automate processing, servicing and administration of loans, as well as investments and insurance.

Its systems currently process over 19 million accounts and collect £3 billion of direct debit payments each year on behalf of both private and public sector clients.

Aegiq Reveals All

Aegiq’s quantum photonics platform is designed for communications, quantum computing and imaging. Having completed the first closing Aegiq says it is considering funds to join the second closing.

The company is a spin-out of the University of Sheffield, founded by a team consisting of CEO Dr. Max Sich, CTO Dr. Scott Dufferwiel and CFO Andrii Iamshanov. It had recently won the Institute of Physics Business Start-Up Award for the development of its platform using proprietary deterministic single-photon sources.

Dr. Sich explains: “Our patented single-photon technology and novel integrated optics approach will allow us to offer next-generation quantum communications, unlocking new opportunities for our customers.”

Aegiq’s platform technology enables a range of new R&D applications in quantum science, sensing, imaging and others. The technology will also be developed for quantum security, including quantum key distribution and quantum computing applications.

The tech startup adds that it has been awarded funding for several projects supported by Quantum Technologies Challenge at Innovate UK (part of UK Research & Innovation), with total value of the funded consortia exceeding £20 million.

Antony Peyton
Antony Peyton
Antony Peyton is the Editor of eWeek UK. He has 18 years' journalism and writing experience. His career has taken him to China, Japan and the UK - covering tech, fintech and business. Follow on Twitter @TonyFintech.

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