With A $550 Million Investment Facility, Secfi Is Helping Clients Improve Financial Outcomes

By Annie Baker ● February 3, 2020
  • Pre-wealth management platform Secfi recently announced it secured a $550 million investment facility from Serengeti Asset Management. These are the details.

Secfi is known as the first pre-wealth management platform, which helps startup employees navigate financial decisions from offer to IPO. Recently, the company announced it secured a $550 million investment facility from Serengeti Asset Management. The $550 million will be used for powering Secfi’s business growth in helping executives, employees, and shareholders preserve and diversify their wealth.

Serengeti Asset Management is also an early-stage venture investor in Secfi. And the investment firm is expanding its credit franchise into underwriting along with selecting and investing in leading private technology companies through stock financings.

Secfi Founder & CEO Wouter Witvoet pointed out that his company is building technology that helps demystify the world of equity compensation.

“Making well informed financial decisions is critical in maximizing equity compensation — we are proud to empower shareholders with the education and financing needed to build wealth for the future,” said Witvoet.

And Secfi provides an integrated suite of personalized educational, advisory, and financing tools that compare different strategies for exercising options. The tools also include tax modeling, equity intelligence dashboards, exit forecasting, and exercise reporting. Plus Secfi also provides the financial solutions needed for shareholders to unlock liquidity from their shares thus enabling private company employees to get the most out of their stock options.

Witvoet noted that SecFi is thrilled to partner with Serengeti founder Jody LaNasa. LaNasa has decades of experience leading credit and underwriting teams at Goldman Sachs.

“We are excited to be investing in many of the leading, fastest-growing companies in the world by financing their employees and investors through this innovative, tax-efficient structure,” added LaNasa. “To date, the primary option for an individual seeking cash for their private stock was to attempt to sell in the secondary market. Now they can retain upside of the stock they own while also getting needed liquidity today. Wouter and the Secfi team have developed a fully integrated solution to this problem and we’re thrilled to be their partners.”

Often times, startup employees find themselves wealthy “on paper,” but are lacking sufficient liquidity, knowledge, and confidence to take full advantage of their equity. It is rare that companies provide their employees with the tools they need to evaluate their financial options or take advantage of their equity awards.

And a 2019 study by Charles Schwab cited that 76% of startup employees never exercised or sold their stock options. Nearly half (48%) said that they held off due to fear of making financial mistakes.

Secfi’s personalized approach is known for pairing clients with in-house advisors who help shareholders navigate complex financial decisions and optimize their equity positions in order to maximize their wealth. And the company’s exercise financing platform limits personal risk and covers the exercise costs and taxes thus allowing clients to participate in their employer’s success without risking their savings. Clients do not make payments against the financing until IPO or a liquidity event.

Witvoet launched Secfi in 2017 and the company had raised $7 million in venture capital from lead investors Rucker Park Capital, Social Leverage, and Serengeti Asset Management. Plus the company also brought on renowned entrepreneurs like Mark Pincus (Zynga), Jake Gibson (Nerdwallet) and Brian Norgard (Tinder) as strategic investors.