China’s Tencent builds stake in UK digital bank Monzo

Chinese gaming and social media company Tencent Holdings Ltd (0700.HK) has taken a small stake in Britain’s Monzo as part of a fundraising, the digital bank said on Friday, just weeks after it fetched a valuation of $4.5 billion.

Monzo did not disclose details of Tencent’s stake, but Sky News earlier on Friday reported that the Chinese firm was investing a minority of a $100 million capital injection, citing a source close to the process.

Founded in 2015, Monzo is a high-profile neobank with more than 5 million customers but has struggled to turn a profit, with annual losses widening last year as it disclosed it was facing a potential civil and criminal money laundering probe.

Earlier this month, Monzo received funding from investors such as Abu Dhabi Growth Fund and Coatue.

Tencent holds stakes in major U.S. tech companies, including electric-car maker Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) and photo-messaging app maker Snap Inc (SNAP.N).