B2B startups continue to steal the venture capital spotlight. Recent reports in Citing Venture Intelligence data, LiveMint said B2B FinTech has secured $657 million in India so far this year, compared to $617 million for B2C FinTechs.
It’s a departure from years past, but according to Unicorn India Ventures managing partner Anil Joshi, it’s perhaps unsurprising that B2B FinTech has pulled ahead of its B2C counterpart.
“B2B FinTech companies are more predictable than B2C firms,” he told the publication. “A B2C FinTech model has higher scalability, but customers tend to switch platforms very quickly and, therefore, have to be attracted through discounts and freebies, which eventually makes it hard for these businesses to break even.”
“SME customers tend to be stickier and offer opportunities for better unit economics,” added NiYO Co-founder and CEO Vinay Bagri.
The trend is seen in other markets, too, with reports at Pitchbook on Thursday (Oct. 31) highlighting recent high-profile, high-value funding rounds for B2B FinTechs including Brex, C2FO and Stripe. Below, PYMNTS looks at the latest B2B FinTech investment rounds, with more than $921 million raised.
With Series A in the bag, Paper.id, based in Indonesia, said it will expand its invoicing services for small- and medium-sized businesses across the country in an effort to support their digitization. The company raised an undisclosed sum from investors at Golden State Ventures and Modalku, which supported Paper.id’s Software-as-a-Service that connects SMBs to a platform to generate invoices, manage inventory and streamline accounting and accounts receivable. The company has also recently expanded its product offering, collaborating with alternative lenders and financial institutions to expand access to funding for its business customers, said DealStreetAsia reports.
Targeting business customers with in-field workers, Workiz announced $5 million in Series A funding led by Magenta Venture Partners, while existing backer Aleph also participated. In announcing the new investment, Workiz also revealed an expansion of its services that help in-field workers manage their tasks, introducing an Alexa-powered voice activation feature to control its app with voice commands. The U.S. company currently services clients across the U.S. and Canada, TechCrunch said, operating in verticals with locksmiths, repair service providers and cleaning businesses. The company said it would use the funding to expand its automation capabilities and invest in new hires across North America.
Reports in TechCrunch this week said WeFarm, based in the U.K., has raised $13 million. It operates a networking and eCommerce marketplace for small farmers. The Series A funding will be used to expand its reach to the small, independent farming industry, and to develop new B2B services on top of its existing offering that connects farmers to local suppliers. Investors at True Ventures led the round, while AgFunder, June Fund, and previous backers LocalGlobe, ADV and Norrsken Foundation also participated, reports said.
Gig economy talent recruiting platform Fountain announced $23 million in new funding led by DCM, reports this week said. Other investors at 51job, Origin Ventures, and Uncork Capital also participated in the Series B funding for the India-based firm, which said it would use the investment to invest in research and development, product discovery and client expansion with a focus on the restaurant and hospitality industry. The firm connects employers to technology that streamlines recruitment, talent sourcing, screening and interview scheduling, with integrated background check capabilities, document signing and employee on-boarding.
Supply chain management startup Shipwell secured $35 million in Series B funding this week, the company announced in a press release, with investors at Georgian Partners, Fifth Wall, Global Founders Capital, Box Group and Aspect Ventures providing the funding. Based in Austin, the company operates a platform for shippers, third-party logistics providers and carriers, enabling users to obtain a single view of their freight shipping and other logistics operations. The company said it would use the investment to hire new employees and open a new office in Chicago next year.
Adding support for the logistics market, investors at Prospus Ventures led a $40 million investment round for India’s ElasticRun. The Series C investment round also saw participation from existing backers Avataar Ventures and Kalaari Capital, according to TechCrunch reports. ElasticRun targets small mom-and-pop shops, enabling them to deliver goods to other local stores and consumers with its last-mile logistics offering. Reports said ElasticRun plans to use the funding to expand its customer base and strengthen adoption among neighborhood stores across India, as well as to introduce new B2B products and services, and to invest in its analytics and machine learning capabilities.
San Francisco’s Faire operates a B2B eCommerce platform connecting local retailers to wholesale items to procure. An announcement on the company website said the firm raised an impressive $150 million in Series D funding, propelling the startup to unicorn status, with investors at Lightspeed Venture Partners and Founders Fund co-leading the investment. In its announcement, Faire said that the funding will be used to promote the company’s mission to diversify retail by helping stores access a wider range of products for their shoppers, while it also plans to expand into new markets and expand the functionality of its marketplace.
By a wide margin, supply chain financing company Greensill Capital leads this week’s B2B venture capital roundup thanks to Softbank Vision Fund, which placed $655 million into the firm — just months after a separate $800 million investment. The company plans to use the investment to expand globally and finance strategic acquisitions. Reports noted that Greensill also announced the introduction of a new service to provide early access to earned wages, the result of its takeover of FreeUp. In a statement, Lex Greensill, the firm’s founder and CEO, said “there is effectively no difference between our firm making an early invoice payment and making an early salary payment.”