SINGAPORE-HEADQUARTERED regulatory technology (regtech) startup Silent Eight has raised an oversubscribed US$6.2 million Series A round, it said on Wednesday.
Capital raised will be used to hire new employees to support its pipeline of customers in banking and insurance. It has almost 50 people employed globally with 20 in Singapore, and plans to double global headcount by the end of 2020’s first quarter.
In Singapore, the anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing startup will hire for positions such as data scientist and product manager to aid its research and development push.
Existing investor Wavemaker Partners – an early-stage venture capital firm – led this new round, which included investment from Standard Chartered’s venture arm SC Ventures, and OTB Ventures.
Veteran corporate leader and venture capitalist Koh Boon Hwee, an existing investor, also partook.
With the new fundraise, Paul Santos, managing partner of Wavemaker Partners South-east Asia, has joined Silent Eight’s board of directors.
Standard Chartered is also Silent Eight’s biggest client and has engaged the startup since December 2018 to optimise the British bank’s name screening process at scale across more than 40 markets including the US, the UK, Singapore and Hong Kong.
The startup uses artificial intelligence to improve the name screening process and enable better decision making.
Mr Santos said that year after year, banks continue to face increased scrutiny and regulations.
“An artificial intelligence-powered engine like Silent Eight is the most effective solution to weed out money laundering and terrorist financing and reduce manpower and compliance risks,”
Financial firms have paid at least US$28.4 billion in fines for money laundering and sanctions violations since 2008, according to The Economist.
Compliance scrutiny has increased since the financial crisis, while ongoing trade wars have also resulted in increased complications and sanctions.