Machine Learning

ML/AI-driven Lending Platform Artis Closes $7 Million Series A

Atlanta-based fintech startup completes Series A round in support of hiring sales and operations staff and growing the capabilities of consumer loan platform

Artis Technologies, a company that powers real-time lending and payment solutions for businesses at the point of need, today announced the closing of a $7 million Series A round led by Saluda Grade Ventures with additional follow-on investment from CMFG Ventures, Fintech Venture Fund, the Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA), and previous investors.

Saluda Grade is one of the leading innovators and investors in the alternative “non-bank” lending sector. The firm will help the Atlanta-based company grow operations, diversify funding sources, and improve client support.

Brad Hartung, Portfolio Manager at Saluda Grade, commented, “Artis provides a cutting-edge technology solution to a broken and outdated point of need lending landscape. The team at Artis has proven an ability to execute their vision, and Saluda Grade is excited to marry our capital markets expertise and execution to accelerate their growth.”

Artis is co-founded by Barclay Keith, Lena McDearmid, and Brian Lanehart, and since its public launch in 2020 has successfully gone to market with its first two products, Artis Connect and Artis Credit. Through both products, Artis enables financial institutions to put excess capital to work by generating consumer loan assets with attractive risk-adjusted returns at point-of-need via merchants and merchant networks.

These merchants become the “face of financing” to the consumer, offering loans originated by partner financial institutions at the point when the consumer is making a purchasing decision. Its API-based platform uses alternative data sources, complex machine learning, and AI to present custom, real-time loan offers to individual borrowers at the point of making a purchase. This approach helps drive demand for the merchant; extends creative, well-structured financing to the consumer; and generates new revenue sources for participating financial institutions.

Barclay Keith, CEO of Artis, commented, “We couldn’t be more excited about partnering with the team at Saluda Grade to continue to execute on our vision of removing friction from financial services. This round and the expertise our new investors add will allow us to continue to grow the innovative products we’re creating for lenders, merchants, and consumers.”

“Consumers demand an optimized experience at their point of need,” said Sam Das, Managing Director at CMFG Ventures. “Artis removes friction, empowering both financial institutions and merchants with a sophisticated digital lending infrastructure. We’re proud to support the Artis team as they fill the growing need to improve consumer access.”

“We selected Artis for the ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator program off the strength of its platform,” ICBA Chief Innovation Officer Charles Potts said. “This investment represents our continued support in Artis’ solution, which we believe empowers community bankers with the tools they need to support evolving customer needs with confidence and ease.”

Morris, Manning, and Martin, LLP advised Artis in closing this Series A funding round. “MMM is proud to represent Artis, a leading solutions provider for financial institutions offering lending solutions to its business partners,” said Nick Rueter of Morris, Manning & Martin. “Artis is fast becoming a key player in the growing Atlanta FinTech community by providing low-friction, affordable financing to customers at their point of need.”

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