CertifID Secures $20 Million in Latest Funding to Battle Wire Fraud

CertifID Secures $20 Million in Latest Funding to Battle Wire Fraud

Fraud prevention startup CertifID announced a successful funding round of $20 million, led by Arthur Ventures. This latest capital injection values the company at "over double" its prior valuation.

Transaction Highlights:

  • Deal Value: $20m
  • Valuation multiple: Not disclosed, but the startup is valued at "over double" its previous valuation.
  • Lead Investor: Arthur Ventures, known for its investment portfolio in SaaS and tech-enabled services.
  • Target: CertifID, a Michigan-based startup that specializes in thwarting wire fraud in real estate transactions.

CertifID Snapshot:

  • Genesis: Founded in 2017 by Thomas Cronkright after experiencing a $180,000 loss due to fraud in his own real estate title agency.
  • Problem Tackled: CertifID aims to protect stakeholders in real estate transactions from wire fraud—a criminal activity that resulted in $213 million in losses in 2020 alone.
  • Tech Stack: Utilizes a rules-based engine and an AI model trained on internally vetted data and expert decisions for identity verification and payment disbursement.
  • Expansion plans: With fresh funding, the startup aims to accelerate product development and expand its operations to meet rising demand.

A Real Problem in Real Estate: Wire Fraud

Thomas Cronkright, co-founder of CertifID, became a catalyst for change in the real estate industry after being a victim of wire fraud himself. Joining forces with Tyler Adams, previously of BCG's corporate investment division, the duo set out to mitigate this growing problem that had seen a 380% spike since 2017, according to FBI stats.

Tools and Tactics: CertifID’s Approach to Fraud Prevention

The company's technology serves both title agents and real estate law firms by insuring transactions up to $1 million. It offers homebuyers the option to add a money protection plan and requires home sellers to undergo an identity verification process.

While automation and AI are core to CertifID’s operations, the team balances tech with a human-centered approach to tackle fraud effectively. The AI model continuously adapts to new forms of fraud, ensuring a robust defense mechanism.

Looking Forward: Growth and Scalability

Tyler Adams, CertifID's CEO, states that the company plans to channel the new funding into further product development and scaling operations. Despite the real estate market experiencing fluctuations, demand for CertifID's solutions remains strong.

"We expect growth to continue, given the persistent rise of fraud and the fact that a majority of the real estate industry hasn't yet adopted anti-fraud tech," Adams remarked.

 

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