KBC Group to take financial stake in Unbox



19 October 2021 – 18:00 CET – 12:00 EST


Brussels / Washington D.C. – Today, KBC Group and Unbox signed a memorandum of understanding whereby KBC Group, a firm believer of closed-loop systems (CLS) and programmable money, decided to make a private equity financial investment in Unbox, as part of Unbox’s ongoing 6 million euro pre-series round (approx. 6.9 million USD).


Since its founding in April 2020, Unbox has developed a platform that allows organizations (governments, private enterprises, non-governmental organizations) to efficiently distribute funding such as government welfare, stimulus money, humanitarian aid and behavioral reward systems. Unbox uses its closed-loop system CL11 to efficiently distribute funding to the intended recipients, guaranteeing the proper use of any funding and protecting it from fraud, slippage, and leakage.


KBC’s financial support, as well as that of other investors, will allow Unbox to accelerate their expansion globally and use their platform to add value to financial systems and increase financial wellbeing worldwide.


Unbox has already shown the efficiency of its platform on the Belgian market through the Antwerp Ucoin, whereby the City of Antwerp used Unbox to inject over 10 million euros of stimulus funding into the local economy. Unbox is also behind other widely used applications of its closed-loop system such as: the litter collection app the Click; school supply distribution for the underprivileged with the Foundation Robin; the Healthy Membership Program that rewards employees to eat more balanced.


Erik SAELENS, founder and ceo of Unbox, and Ruben VERHELST, co-founder and cfo of Unbox, comment:

“KBC group is one of Europe’s leading financial institutions. They are a solid financial investor for Unbox and we share the same vision on the societal need and unlimited potential of CLS applications. KBC group is at the forefront of innovation and digital transformation. Their technology and solutions are world class, visionary and far ahead of the pack. KBC Mobile app was recently named best mobile banking app worldwide by independent international research agency SIA Partners! We are excited that KBC has decided to make a private equity investment in Unbox, allowing us to further develop our CLS applications. We are delighted to welcome KBC into the capital of Unbox.”


Erik LUTS, chief innovation officer KBC Group, comments KBC’s financial investment:

“At the occasion of our strategy update in November 2020, we repeated that KBC’s strategy remains focused on bolt-on acquisitions. Besides this, KBC also envisages the acquisition of FinTechs to support the implementation of its strategy and to address current white spots. Unbox is one of the players on the market aiming at taking a significant part of the closed-loop business. Our financial private equity participation in Unbox perfectly fits in our programmable money plans based on blockchain technology (KBC coin), which we announced in June 2021 and are currently developing. KBC aims to become a cornerstone institution for programmable money (or closed-loop networks).”


Note for the editors


KBC Group

KBC Group is one of the leading financial groups in Europe. It is a multi-channel bank-insurance group with a geographic focus on Europe, catering mainly to retail clients, SMEs and local midcaps. The group occupies significant, and in many cases leading positions in its core markets of Belgium and Central and Eastern Europe. The KBC group has also selectively established a presence in several other countries and regions around the world. KBC is headquartered in Brussels, is one of the largest companies in Belgium and is listed on Euronext Brussels (ticker symbol 'KBC').


Unbox

Since its founding in April 2020, Unbox has developed a platform that allows organizations (governments, private enterprises, non-governmental organizations) to efficiently distribute funding such as government welfare, stimulus money, humanitarian aid and behavioral reward systems. Unbox uses its closed-loop system CL11 to efficiently distribute funding to the intended recipients, guaranteeing the proper use of any funding and protecting it from fraud, slippage, and leakage. For more information about Unbox’s technology and solution visit www.unboxuniverse.com.


Contact KBC

Viviane HUYBRECHT, general manager corporate communication and spokesperson

tel +32 2 429 85 45 | mobile +32 475 30 11 61

pressofficekbc@kbc.be


Contact Unbox

Marc FERLET, co-founder and cmo

mobile +1 202 710 9265 | +33 6 79 16 96 26

marc.ferlet@unboxuniverse.com