For businesses large and small, the finance department must juggle disconnected tools to reconcile payments and expenses, often spending hours sorting through vendor invoices, business tool subscriptions, and overhead just to close the books at the end of the month.
To simplify these processes and eliminate friction in managing business expenses, Bulgaria-based business-to-business (B2B) payments company Payhawk has created an all-in-one financial management platform for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and high-growth multinationals in Europe, where market fragmentation tends to further complicate these issues.
“We combine not only routine company payments, but also payments for accounts payable and reimbursement for employees who do not have access to company cards. All business expenses can go to one system across the [business] – that’s the unique thing we bring to the market,” Hristo Borisov, co-founder and CEO of the company, told PYMNTS in a recent interview.
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In addition to helping manage these complex workflows and providing multi-entity management tools to businesses in the region, the FinTech recently launched a cross-border credit card offering. This gives multinational companies from more than 30 countries the ability to use a single credit card provider in multiple markets – an option that Borisov said was not available to companies before.
Since its launch in 2018, the pan-European payments and spending platform has grown significantly, recently becoming Bulgaria’s first unicorn after completing a $250 million Series B funding round earlier this year.
Read more: Payhawk becomes first Bulgarian unicorn after $100m round
It’s a feat Daniel Tomov, founding partner of Eleven Ventures – Payhawk’s first institutional investor – attributed to the company’s unique talent and leadership, whose achievements have given the ecosystem a huge boost. startup location.
Robust cross-border payment solution
Providing a seamless and integrated cross-border payment solution for customers is a key objective for Payhawk, which currently offers its customers faster payments in British Pounds, SEPA for Euro payments or Visa for Bulgarian Lev.
To further remove friction for businesses making cross-border payments, the company plans to launch a solution this year that will enable cross-border payments to reimburse employees or pay suppliers in euros or pounds sterling – one of the most most requested, Borisov mentioned.
Related: B2B spend management startup Payhawk closes $112M Series B
“What we solve for businesses is to offer a single source of proof and a single system in which they can make all these payments [efficiently]”, he further explained. “We are working to make these highly efficient cross-border payments a reality for our customers so that they can truly use Payhawk for absolutely all the expenses they have as a business.
As several currencies, such as the Euro and US Dollar, are more prevalent in the global financial system, companies now have suppliers outside of the European Union, indicating the need to consider other currencies.
“If you work with a US supplier and you are based in Europe or you work for a supplier based in Asia, you need to be able to work with these suppliers so that they do not have to deal with the company payments by map all the time,” he said. “That’s where we’re looking to create a very robust solution, so there’s actually no boundary when using a system like Payhawk.”
See also: Payhawk launches new business suite, Cash Back
SMEs drive growth
Unlike a few years ago, when using a company other than a company’s bank to handle payments was rare, a FinTech’s spend management is more prevalent in the business space today, especially in the B2B market.
“We’re starting to see a lot more digital CFOs and digital-first people considering these kinds of options that go beyond a [normal] bank to help them be much more efficient when handling payments and managing company cards for paying bills. This is something that we see as a big trend,” Borisov said.
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This trend, he added, is fueled by growing demand from SMBs in the B2B market who need solutions to address issues associated with their current spend management practices.
“I think we are very close to this pivotal moment, [and] by the end of this year or early next year, we’re going to start to see massive demand from SMEs in this area. This is where we see much bigger problems requiring solutions like Payhawk,” he said.
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