Some companies struggle to let go of paper and legacy infrastructure, but venture capitalists (VC) this week are focusing their support on B2B startups looking to pull the enterprise up from the past, and propeling them into the future of technology. That means Internet of Things (IoT), data analytics and robotics process automation — three areas that saw particularly high funding rounds in this week's B2B venture capital roundup. Check out the rundown of investments below, including the firm that secured a $1.8 billion valuation.
While U.K.-based payments platform PaySend is mostly focused on the consumer payments market, the company does service business customers by enabling users to move funds from one card to another across more than 60 countries. The company announced this week it secured $20 million in funding led by MARCorp Financial, Crowdfund Insider reported.
"PaySend [has] created the first integrated B2B and B2C global payments business, which is already disrupting the market," said MARCorp Financial Chairman Michael Fazio in a statement.
The company offers Global Transfers, Global Account and Global Processing services. With the latest funding, PaySend said it plans to roll out additional services as it focuses on global growth.
Canada's Flinks provides a platform for banks and FinTech firms to connect, a signal of the nation's approach towards open banking. The company's CEO Yves-Gabriel Leboeuf announced this week it raised $1.75 million in seed funding, with plans to grow its workforce and expand its offering. At present, Flinks provides an API to connect banks and FinTech companies, and facilitate data sharing. The company is also currently running in beta phase its Flinks Score solution, allowing lenders to underwrite financing. The funding was led by National Bank of Canada and Luge Capital, while InnoStart Capital, Panache Ventures, iNovia Capital and Conconi Growth Partners also participated.
With $10 million in new funding, New York-based Oden Technologies plans to continue focusing research and development efforts for its IoT services geared toward the manufacturing sector. The company said in its announcement that manufacturing is "on the brink of a new machine age" and ready for transformation led by industrial IoT and analytics.
Oden Technologies deploys its tools to help manufacturers boost efficiency and cut waste with a cloud-based data analytics solution, paired with physical IoT devices that can plug into firms' existing machines. The company noted that software adaptors can aggregate data from companies' ERP and other software systems to include in its analysis. Its Series A funding was led by Atomico, while existing backers EQT Ventures and Inbox Capital also participated, according to EU-Startups.
In what SmartCompany reported was Australia's largest funding round of the year so far, Airwallex announced $80 million in funding for its cross-border business payments solution. The company saw the Series B funding led by Tencent and Sequoia Capital China, according to reports. The funding will go toward the development of new products and applications, as well as toward acquiring operating licenses to expand into new markets.
The company also plans to grow staff levels in Hong Kong, the U.S. and China, reports noted, with Airwallex paying particular attention to cross-border payments between Asia-Pacific (APAC) and the rest of the world. Furthermore, the firm noted it will begin to focus on how to make cross-border payments services more accessible to smaller companies in the Australian market.
Cybersecurity is always popular on the B2B venture capital front, but Trillium Secure has a particular focus for its data security solutions: vehicles and fleets. The company said this week it raised $11 million in Series A2 funding led by JAFCO — while Airbus Ventures, Deutsche Bahn Digital Ventures, Mitsubishi UFJ Capital, Tokyo Century Corporation and Plug and Play Ventures also participated, a press release said.
U.S.-based Trillium said it will deploy the funding to expand product engineering, sales and marketing, and customer support services, as well as to strike new collaborative partnerships and projects.
"Effective cybersecurity solutions, such as Trillium's, are key to helping ensure a smooth transition to the connected and autonomous vehicles of today and tomorrow," said JAFCO President and CEO Shinichi Fuki.
With B2B startups securing funding this week for their high-tech efforts to pull the enterprise into the digital age, it's not surprising that a firm like Automation Anywhere secured the largest investment round of the week. The company, based in the U.S., announced $250 million in Series A financing from New Enterprise Associates (NEA) and Goldman Sachs Growth Equity, while General Atlantic and World Innovation Lab (WiL) also participated.
According to a press release, Automation Anywhere's funding is among the largest for an enterprise software provider, and brings the company' valuation up to $1.8 billion. The firm links business customers with robotics process automation (RPA) through its Intelligent Digital Workforce Platform, which combines RPA, cognitive automation and analytics to enhance business process accuracy.
The funding will be used to focus on customer engagement and product development as it looks across North America, LATAM, India, Europe, Australia, Japan, South Korea and Singapore to expand.
"Customers tell us that traditional process automation technologies are capable of automating only about 20 percent of an enterprise's business processes," said the company's Co-founder and CEO Mihir Shukla. "We believe our Intelligent Digital Workforce Platform can automate up to 80 percent of these processes."