Last week, we mentioned Pleo as one of 10 Danish startups to watch in 2018. Today, the Copenhagen- and London-based fintech startup Pleo, that offers smart company payment cards to automate expense reports, announced a $16 million Series A financing round led by Kinnevik, a leading European venture fund based in Stockholm, with participation from existing investors Creandum, Founders and Seedcamp. The round brings the total amount raised by the company to $23 million.
Founded in 2015, Pleo combines payment cards that can be easily assigned to employees with individually set limits, with software and mobile apps to automatically match receipts and track all company spending in real-time with detailed analytics. Pleo does away with expense reports, and automates bookkeeping tasks as it integrates directly with accounting software providers, saving companies time and money. 10 new businesses join Pleo every day, most of them from the UK. Currently only available in the UK and Denmark, around 1500 companies have switched to Pleo just in the last year.
Jeppe Rindom, who co-founded Pleo with Niccolo Perra, stated: “It’s quite amazing what we have achieved in just a year in only two countries, since our launch from beta. We’ve seen tremendous growth and great reception, due to our very focused and localised approach. Our NPS score is around 80, we receive incredible reviews and have negative churn, all very clear indicators that we are on the right path. We are now ready to expand our services across other Europe countries, where we have already see a lot of demand. The backing from Kinnevik, one of the most reputable European investment funds, will help us achieve our ambitious goals.”
The majority of companies today rely on employees paying out of pocket, while cards are usually only reserved for management. Pleo is changing that, by giving employees autonomy, and managers more control.
Charlie Gardiner-Hill, COO at The Tab, a UK based student online news service which has rolled out Pleo across its whole organisation, stated: “It has revolutionised how we manage our expenses: staff don’t have to spend their own money, no need to keep receipts and our finance team can keep a track of everything in real time. Obviously giving staff prepaid cards is a big change, but if you don’t trust your staff to spend company money responsibly without having to ask first or claim it back retrospectively, then they shouldn’t be on your team anyway.”
Pleo will use the funding to rapidly expand its headcount in Denmark, UK and other countries around Europe, from 50 to more than 200 employees by the end of 2019 to help scale and accelerate product development. The young company is expanding its product offerings to fit more complex needs of bigger organisations by adding more customized workflows, different integrations and premium offerings very soon. Their objective is to become a default solution to handle all company spending for businesses of different sizes and needs, in each of the new markets they enter.
Andreas Bernstrom, Investment Director at Kinnevik, commented: “We are delighted to partner with Jeppe Rindom, Niccolo Perra and the whole Pleo team. They have shown strong growth and outstanding customer loyalty in a very short period of time. We are very excited to support their long-term journey and look forward to supporting their launch in new markets to become the European industry leader.”