GLOBES: Investment network co eToro raises $15m

13 March 12 14:24, Roy Goldenberg

CEO Johnathan Assia: We want to become one of the largest investment houses in the world.

Investment network company eToro Ltd. has raised $15 million on top of $31 million raised earlier. Spark Capital, which has invested in Twitter, Foursquare, Tumblr, and other social network developers, led the round, with Israel's BRM Capital The company said that it would use the proceeds to fuel its international growth and continue to evolve its social trading platform.

Spark Capital's Israeli investments include 5min Media Ltd. (which was acquired by AOL for $65 million), adap.TV Ltd.Boxee TV Ltd., and Contextin Ltd. Previous investors in eToro include Social Leverage LLC, and angel investors Nechemia (Chemi) Peres and Guy Gamzu.

eToro, previously named Tradonomi, was founded in 2006 by CEO Johnathan Assia, chairman David Assia, patent attorney Adv. Naomi Assia, Ronen Assia, and CTO David Ring. The company has 200 employees in Europe, US, UK, Cyprus, India, Australia, and Israel, where its R&D center is located.

eToro's CopyTrader social platform, based on the principle of crowd sourcing, enables non-professional investors to make investments. Users can follow trades made by other users to make successful investments of their own. CopyTrader that allows any user to automatically copy the entire trading activity of the best performing traders in the network, thus delivering better success rates and higher average returns per trade. Similar to other social networks, the platform has a news feed, which displays trades by user name, country, and type of investment - equity, commodities, currencies, and so on.

Johnathan Assia told "Globes", "we will use the new financing to continue our growth by developing the technology and hiring skilled staff. We want to become one of the largest investment houses in the world." He added, "We're personalizing the financial world, turning into a social world."

"The internet is breaking down long-standing business models across various well-established industries. Just as our portfolio companies, Twitter, Tumblr and foursquare have reinvented the way people interact online, eToro is now leading the charge to disrupt yet another market, the financial services market," said Spark Capital general partner Spark Capital Santo Politi.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on March 13, 2012

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