Milan-based mobile app developer Bending Spoons raises new funding from institutional investors, eyes IPO

Milan-based mobile app developer Bending Spoons announced today it has secured a fresh equity investment from Baillie Gifford, Cox Enterprises, and NB Renaissance. Alongside these new investors, Bending Spoons also received continued support from existing institutional investors, including NUO Capital and StarTIP, which is controlled by Tamburi Investment Partners.

While the exact amount of the deal was not disclosed, the financing represents the company’s first major primary equity financing since its inception a decade ago as it eyes an initial public offering (IPO).

“The capital infusion represents the company’s first significant primary equity financing since its founding ten years ago,” Bending Spoons said in a news release.

Founded in 2013 by Luca Ferrari, Francesco Patarnello, Matteo Danieli, Luca Querella, and Tomasz Greber, the Milan, Italy-based mobile app development startup has emerged as a prominent app provider globally, boasting an impressive track record of 500 million downloads and 100 million active users per month. The startup has served over half a billion people worldwide through its suite of digital technology products, including Evernote, Remini, and Splice.

NB Renaissance, one of the investors in Bending Spoons, highlighted its strong relationship with the startup’s founding team. Their relationship dates back to 2019 when they collaborated on a potential acquisition deal in the U.S.

Since then, the two entities have maintained close contact, and NB Renaissance plans to work closely with Bending Spoons’ founders to build a world-class Italian-based tech company, positioning it as an ideal candidate for an IPO in the coming years.

In a statement, NB Renaissance said: “In securing the deal, NB Renaissance leveraged its strong relationship with Bending Spoons’ founding team,” it said, Reuters reported.

“(We) have been in close contact ever since…NB Renaissance will thus work alongside the founders to build…a world-class Italian-based tech company and an ideal IPO candidate in a few years.”

While the firm didn’t disclose the exact size of the investment, it is known that NB Renaissance acquired a minority stake in the company, with Stefano Bontempelli, NBR’s senior partner, appointed as a board member.

Cherry Bay Capital Group, another investor in Bending Spoons, also confirmed their investment through a separate statement. The company has ambitious revenue targets for the year, aiming to double its 2022 revenue of $160 million.

Additionally, Bending Spoons has successfully secured approximately 300 million euros in financing from major Italian banks, such as Intesa Sanpaolo and Banco BPM, over the last 12 months.

NB Renaissance, with a strong focus on technology, has a diversified company portfolio, including Engineering, OverIT, and Inetum. It is a part of Neuberger Berman, an independent, private, and employee-owned investment manager with an impressive $443 billion of assets under management. The collaboration with Bending Spoons marks a significant step in the startup’s growth trajectory, backed by reputable investors and financial institutions.