Commodity trade finance blockchain platform Komgo has raised a further CHF26mn (US$28.9mn) in its third funding round since it was launched by a group of banks and corporates in 2018.

The new funds were raised from the company’s existing shareholders and new investor Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC), alongside an additional new investor that wasn’t identified.

Komgo says in a statement that it has recently opened offices in New York and Houston and hired new salespeople in Singapore.

Most of the money “will be allocated to accelerating these expansion efforts, reinforcing Komgo’s customer success teams and their availability to service clients, and targeted marketing to reach companies outside of the pure commodities space”, the company says.

Trade finance transactions on its blockchain platform rose by half over the last year, the company says. It has also chalked up a 65% boost in in production over the same period.

Souleïma Baddi, the company’s chief executive, says: “The nature of Komgo’s business, as a B2B financial software provider, means that having the requisite institutional support is key.”

“Our base of founding shareholders have thus far enabled the company to take a leading role in the transformation of trade finance,” the former Société Générale banker says. “We’re delighted to welcome SMBC to this prestigious group, and to achieving our next period of growth together.”

In a separate statement, SMBC says it decided to join the banks investing in Komgo due to the increasing speed of digitisation among commodity traders and oil majors during the pandemic.

The bank, which has been a Komgo client for over a year, says it will “expand its collaboration with the company and continue to promote the development of digital products utilising blockchain technology in order to further improve operational efficiencies in trade finance”.

Like many digital upstarts in the trade finance space, Komgo’s blockchain-based platform is designed to speed up deals, improve transparency and tackle fraud.

Last month the company acted as a “digital agent” on a new borrowing base facility for Swiss coffee trader Sucafina, in which its stock monitoring and digital trade documentation tools were used by the lending banks.

The company’s current shareholders are: ABN Amro, BNP Paribas, Citi, Consensys, Crédit Agricole, Gunvor, ING, Koch Supply & Trading, Macquarie, Mercuria, MUFG, Natixis, Rabobank, SGS, Shell, Société Générale, Total and another unnamed “global financial institution”.