Bulgaria gets its first unicorn as Payhawk picks up an additional €89 million

Just three months after the first wave of its Series B, Payhwawk has just extended its funding to €191 million, giving it the coveted unicorn crown. 

The new funding is led by Lightspeed Venture Partners, with other new investors joining the round including Sprints Capital, Endeavour Catalyst, HubSpot Ventures, and Jigsaw VC. All existing investors including Greenoaks, QED Partners, and Earlybird Digital East are also participating in the round.

Founded in Sofia, and with offices in London, Sofia, Berlin, and Barcelona, Payhawk is growing at a rapid pace for its payment and expense solution. The company plans to become a catalyst for the Bulgarian startup ecosystem and continue to attract and retain the top 1% of talent in the market. 

Hristo Borisov, CEO and Founder of Payhawk, said: “We always knew that we could build a big company if we addressed a significant problem in a large market. The size of the opportunity still drives our growth and ambition today. Every employee that deals with company payments feels that there should be a better way to do it, but this huge problem was never tackled by a strong product team with hardcore engineering background. This is what Payhawk brings to the market. 

“Becoming the first unicorn in Bulgaria is a huge testament to the hard work and resilience of our team over the last three and a half years. We are just at the beginning of our journey, and we cannot wait to continue reinventing how businesses manage their payments.”

Currently, finance teams still do a significant amount of manual work due to multiple disconnected tools for cards, payments, invoices, and expense management. Payhawk reduces this by combining those key elements in a single platform. The company also provides an industry-first 3% cashback on card payments up to the full subscription amount, enabling customers to drive their subscription costs to zero, while benefiting from enterprise-grade software.

Payhawk is emerging as the leading platform for large SMEs and enterprise customers, especially those with a multinational footprint. The company serves businesses in 30 countries across a variety of industries, currencies and payment methods.

With the extra funds, Payhawk now has the financial clout required to aggressively expand its presence in the mid-size enterprise market and continue its ambitious global expansion plans. In addition, it will be used to grow the product team, adding an additional 60 senior software engineers in Sofia. 

The unicorn is growing to meet increased customer demand for new features like mileage tracking and per diem, in light of the incremental return of business travel. Other existing features for enterprise customers will be extended too, including Oracle Netsuite integration, Subscription Management and Budgets.

Building on the momentum from the first influx of Series B capital, Payhawk is set to open offices in Amsterdam and Paris in March, and in New York in September. The company’s headcount is also set to triple from 100 to more than 300 by the end of this year, with the extra funds set to fuel a renewed sales and marketing push for further market expansion.

Arsham Memarzadeh, Partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners, said: “Payhawk is more than just spend management software. It’s a one-stop-shop for finance teams to consolidate the previously disparate systems required to spend, track, process, and budget corporate funds. After getting to know the team for over a year, we’ve been blown away with their pace of product development, building the most comprehensive solution in the market in less than four years.”