London-based fintech startup Payhawk raises €16.5M; plans to triple its marketing, sales team in 2021

London-based fintech startup Payhawk raises €16.5M; plans to triple its marketing, sales team in 2021


London-based Payhawk, the platform for payments and expense management, has raised $20M (approx €16.55M) in its Series A round of funding led by the US-based fund QED Investors, which has a strong track record of investing in 18 fintech unicorns, including Klarna and Nubank. 

Investors in this round

In addition to QED Investors, existing investor Earlybird Digital East, who led the $3.6M Seed round in March 2020, also participated in this round. 

Yusuf Ozdalga, Partner at QED Investors will join the Payhawk board alongside existing investors Mehmed Atici from Earlybird Digital East and Vassil Terziev from Eleven Ventures.

Yusuf Ozdalga, QED Investors, says, “Payhawk’s product fundamentals are exceptionally strong, and industry trends are working in the company’s favour too. As budgets are more typically managed online by remote teams, there is unprecedented demand for cost-effective finance solutions. We look forward to working with Hristo and the team.”

A single process for all expenses

Currently, finance teams use multiple disconnected tools for payments, invoices, and expense management. According to Payhawk’s research, it takes up to 15 minutes and three people on average to execute a single bank transfer. And, even if the amount of the invoice is either €5 or €50,000, the organisational effort remains the same.

This is where Payhawk steps in. The platform acts as a one-stop-shop, combining these key elements and closing the gap between banks and ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) systems. This results in finance teams reducing manual work, keeping tight control of budgets in real-time, and fully automate spending across every payment method.

With such service, the company saw a 10x growth in 2020 and doubled its revenue in Q1 of 2021. Its customers are a mix of fast-growing and multinational companies, including LuxAir, Lotto24, Viking Life, ATU, Gtmhub, MacPaw and By Miles.

Use of the capital

The proceeds from this round will enable Payhawk to further expand its product offering and increase its headcounts. 

Besides, the funds will also help the company:

  • To expand coverage for businesses outside the EU and UK; add new payment products, including credit cards; and support additional currencies with industry-leading FX rates 
  • Will work to streamline the cash flow from existing bank accounts to Payhawk to provide unlimited spending capabilities for finance teams
  • To accelerate its use of AI and machine learning, in order to introduce smart workflows and to reduce the need for manual review and approval
  • To triple its marketing and sales team in 2021, in order to increase its presence in the UK, Germany, and Spain

Growth plans

Payhawk’s CEO & Founder Hristo Borisov says, “We have huge ambitions for the year ahead. Over the next year, we are keen to provide great support to finance teams across more than 30 countries to manage company cards, invoices, and payments in a unified and efficient way. We plan to significantly expand our integrations to existing ERP systems and also easily connect on top of every business bank account across Europe and beyond. To do this, we need to invest in building the right setup and team to scale further, and the new funding round will enable us to do this.”

About Payhawk

Founded in 2018 by Boyko Karadzhov and Hristo Borisov, Payhawk provides expense management software for businesses. 

It allows users to:

  • Collect and read expenses in real-time
  • Provides notifications with receipts and invoices after every transaction
  • Sends automatic reminders to employees to submit payment proofs 
  • Offers both physical and virtual cards 

In addition, the platform also offers users the option to set a spending limit and enable or disable ATM cash withdrawals. Some of the other features include automated data extraction from invoices and receipts, automated categorisation, live budget tracking, real-time reconciliation, and accounting integration. 

Payhawk claims it is also leading the digital transformation agenda of companies like A.T.U in Germany, where the product is used to replace handling of cash with company cards at more than 550 branches.

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