This Paris-based 2015 startup has found a sort of niche in the corporate card space, targeting European SMB segment companies (which they define as between 50-1000 employees) with prepaid cards, including virtual card accounts for use in e-commerce transactions. These are used as part of a spend management program, accessed via Spendesk online and mobile applications, which includes payment, invoices and receipts for ease of expense management.
After signing up, each employee receives a personal card. Companies can top up their global Spendesk account with a normal transfer to a good old IBAN. Then you can define different sets of policies to limit your employees’ expenses. As for employees, Spendesk centralize all expenses in a modern interface. You can track your expenses and upload receipts. Spendesk will pre-fill information and help you match invoices with expenses thanks to a mobile scanning feature. You can finally export all expenses to a format that is compatible with accounting software.
In speaking with Yasmine Guyot, Spendesk’s Head of Marketing, Mercator learned that the company is expecting to launch a debit version of the product soon. There are no plans to issue credit-based solutions. There has historically been somewhat of an aversion to commercial credit payment solutions in Europe, particularly for procurement versus travel-related use cases. The company sells on the basic premise that their solution will help SMB clients ‘get the job done’ by focusing on an easier user experience, while enabling employee business spending and payment needs through pre-approved accounts with embedded controls. The expectation is that this product approach will appeal to resource and time-constrained SMBs and in many cases replace traditional corporate credit card accounts. This is their second round of funding, so apparently the model is having success.
So far, Spendesk has managed over $49 million (€40 million) in transaction volume. 600 companies are using it.
Overview by Steve Murphy, Director, Commerical and Enterprise Payments Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group
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