UK startup Koia brings alternative asset investing to Europe

By , in news startups on . Tagged width: , , ,

Koia, a new investment app, is bringing alternative assets to Europe and early backers include Gary Clarke, ex- Head of Global Equities at Blackrock, Monzo co-founder Gary Dolman and Freetrade co-founder André Mohamed.

Koia is on a mission to make alternative investments accessible to anyone, starting with collectibles like fine wine, watches and Pokémon Cards. Through fractional ownership, any investor – big or small – can own a piece of an iconic asset. Koia is looking to make investing more engaging, by allowing users to invest in assets they are passionate about.

Interest in investing is at an all-time high and the rise of the ‘retail investor’ is not limited to traditional stocks and savings products. The alternative asset market is booming, with “passion-led” investing originally being brought into the mainstream by the likes of StockX – now valued at $3.8bn (£2.7bn).

startup koia app

Whereas an exclusive pair of sneakers may be within reach, the majority of the collectibles market – valued at over £300bn annually – is still almost exclusively accessible to only the wealthiest investors. 

Koia was founded by Richard Draper, Iris ten Teije and Ben Riazy, who have spent their careers across traditional financial services firms and fintech startups. The team believes that the democratisation of financial services has only just begun and that by leveraging technology, they can provide access to new, engaging and financially rewarding asset classes.

Richard Draper (LinkedIn)

Richard has extensive client-facing and trading experience within asset management, having worked at Barclays, UBS and an event-driven hedge fund. He also previously advised start-ups throughout the capital-raising process.

Iris ten Teije (LinkedIn)

Iris has a background in launching and scaling startups. Before Koia, Iris built a fintech business out of Asia (Neat) as its first employee, growing a global client base and receiving backing from investors such as Visa Ventures.

Ben Riazy (LinkedIn)

Ben has been developing apps and leading development teams for the past decade. Ben has experience in building apps for startups, as well as large corporations like HSBC, where he’s spent the last few years of his career before founding Koia.

Koia co-founders Ben Riazy, Richard Draper, Iris ten Teije (left to right)
Koia co-founders Ben Riazy, Richard Draper, Iris ten Teije (left to right)

Our mission is to break down barriers to wealth creation and open up access to new investment opportunities. We want to make buying and selling a fraction of a Rolex, as easy as buying a fractional share in Apple.

Iris ten Teije, Koia co-founder

To realise its vision, not only will Koia’s price points be more accessible; storage, insurance and authentication will also be taken care of. This means investors don’t face any of the hurdles they would typically face when attempting to invest in alternatives.

Low-cost brokers have brought public markets to the masses. The next wave of fintech startups will democratise the full spectrum of financial markets. Koia is on the forefront of this trend, and I am excited to back the team.

André Mohamed, investor

Koia is planning to launch this summer and users can currently sign up for exclusive early access via their website. 

About Koia

Koia is on a mission to open up access to alternative assets and let anyone invest in what they know and love. Via fractional ownership, any investor – big or small – can get access to alternative investments. Koia also takes care of sourcing, authentication, storage and insurance, so investors get all of the benefits and none of the hassle.