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Woman-owned fintech in Tampa preps to go to market

Margie Manning

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Photo by Helloquence on Unsplash

Lock Trust Inc., a financial technology company in Tampa, has launched a $14.175 million capital raise to take its products to market.

The company, founded by CEO Gina LeBlanc in 2013, has developed an electronics payments processing and funds remittance platform. The company’s platform allows users to handle the entire payment management cycle and maintain multiple accounts and multi-merchant businesses, according to CrunchBase. There’s a tax module that automatically collects taxes and allows merchants to pay the state tax commission directly as well as the ability to set up escrow accounts online, LeBlanc said.

“It’s a very robust technology platform,” LeBlanc said. “You can move money seamlessly between bank accounts and between credit cards and manage everything in your life from one portal.”

In an Oct. 23 news release, Lock Trust said its patent-pending technology has 30 percent to 50 percent more features than competitors such as Apple Pay, Pay Pal and Venmo.

The company is payment card industry compliant and is a technology partner with Visa (NYSE: V). It also is registered as a money services business with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.

Lock Trust has completed development and now is working on additional phases, including a U.S. bank license, staffing, sales and marketing, LeBlanc said.

The new equity raise, disclosed in a Nov. 15 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, is the second funding round for the company, LeBlanc said.

“Although we have raised several million dollars for development , and finished the project, we are excited to offer a final round to go-to-market of  $14,175,000,” LeBlanc said.

LeBlanc started the company in Orlando, then moved to Utah for a couple of years, before returning to Florida. It’s now headquartered in Rocky Point in Tampa, and has about 15 employees, including many who work remotely, LeBlanc said. About half of the key team members are women.

The under-the-radar company is one of a relatively small number of tech businesses founded and headed by a woman, and funding has been challenging, LeBlanc said, citing statistics that show less than 3 percent of venture capital funding in 2018 went to companies with female founders.

“I haven’t had anyone say no to me” about funding, LeBlanc said, but added, “Most want to come into the company and take it over.”

The company’s advisory board includes Ray Zachmann, a finance industry consultant and former chief financial officer at Community Bank of Bergen County (New Jersey), and Jean-Marc Landau, principal at Financial Attunement Inc., an investment firm in San Francisco.

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