Cross River Bank acquires small business banking company Seed

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Cross River Bank, a community bank that powers some of the most well known financial technology startups in the United States, said on Monday that it had acquired small business banking company Seed.

As part of the deal, members of Seed will join Cross River, which plans to open additional offices in San Francisco, California and Portland, Oregon, the bank said.

The Fort Lee, New Jersey-based bank declined to disclose the financial terms of the transaction.

The acquisition will enable Cross River to expand both its technology and its small business banking offering, it said.

“Our vision is to become a one-stop shop for the fintech industry,” said Gilles Gade, founder, CEO and chairman of Cross River. “The acquisition of Seed will expand our current offerings and allows us to provide clients with even more options.”

Founded in 2008, Cross River is best known for partnering with fintech startups including online lender Affirm Inc, payments company Stripe and cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase.

By working with Cross River, which is a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp member, fintech companies are able to access some of the infrastructure available to banks without securing a federal banking license themselves. For example, Cross River can transfer money on the banking system’s payment rails for its partners and originate loans in any U.S. state.

In December 2018, Cross River raised $100 million in a round led by private equity firm KKR & Co Inc. Chinese fintech conglomerate CreditEase, LionTree Partners and existing investors Andreessen Horowitz, Battery Ventures and Ribbit Capital, also joined the equity round.

Cross River will be building an integrated product with Seed’s technology and plans to start offering it in the coming months, the bank said.

Seed co-founders Brian Merritt and Ryan Hildebrand, who were former executives at consumer banking startup Simple, will be among those joining Cross River.

Reporting by Anna Irrera