Filing expense claims can be laborious and painful at the best of times, for both the employee and employer. It is a task we all put off until the end of the month then instantly regret not having done it sooner. Well, fear not, Spendesk are here to simplify the whole process, and in doing so alleviate headaches across SMB’s up and down the country. Having developed a real time payment tracking platform, companies are now able to control their spend with the aid of smart company cards. We spoke to co-founder and CEO, Rodolphe Ardant, to find out more about the company as well as becoming a finalist at PitchIt@LendIt.
Tell us about your company, what does it do and what industry problem is it addressing?
I realized that filling out lengthy expense reports, sharing the company credit card and chasing down receipts at the end of the month were common issues for SMBs that needed a radical solution. So we built Spendesk! Our SaaS solution uses the latest innovations in the banking industry to reduce administrative complexity, eliminate expense reports and simplify bookkeeping.
We empower teammates to pay for what they need with virtual and plastic prepaid cards, while giving CFOs complete control over company spending thanks to real-time payment tracking and a centralised dashboard. Our mission is to fundamentally change the way businesses manage their payments & expenses by building the smartest spending solution for teams.
What’s been the company’s journey to date? How big are you now?
I co-founded Spendesk in August 2016 within the startup-studio eFounders in Paris. We started by addressing online expenses with a solution generating single-use virtual cards on demand. Just a few months later, after a seed round of €2 millions led by Kima Ventures, FundersClub and business angels, we tackled offline expenses as well by launching our prepaid expense card solution connected to a mobile app. Since we had a global ambition from the start, we quickly launched in the UK and Germany!
Now a team of 18, we’ve been experiencing crazy traction and have been growing impressively fast! It’s been a little more than a year since we started and we already have 450 clients all around Europe such as Deezer, Webedia Group, Drivy or Hostmaker. To this day, more than €25 millions have already been spent via Spendesk!
What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
Time is the scarcest resource. As a growing startup with so much to build, there is never enough hours in a day! It takes a lot of effort and energy to stay laser-focused on our goals and not get distracted. So I guess that is our biggest challenge, as a team, and also for me personally, but we’ve become good at it and have developed a strong “Get S*** Done” mindset that will move mountains in no time.
You’ve recently been chosen as a finalist in the PitchIt@LendIt event, what has the process been like to this stage, and what would it mean to you to win this award?
LendIt being the world’s largest Fintech show, being selected as a PitchIt finalist is a big opportunity for us and came as a great surprise! The process has been super smooth and we are eager to meet investors and other Fintechs. The timing is also perfect for us, the UK is our second biggest market after France and we are looking to further accelerate our growth there so winning this award could mean a great deal for us.
What are your growth plans, and how would winning an event such as this benefit those growth plans?
Like I said, we are looking to acquire more and more clients in the UK in order to conquer Europe ! We plan to reach 100k€ monthly recurring revenue very quickly before raising our A round, for that we built a super effective sales machine and are investing in growth and marketing. Winning such an event as LendIt would give us a good head start and help us set a foot in the local Fintech and startup network. And of course, meeting investor relations and getting media exposure is also two strong benefits we are looking forward to.
LendIt Europe, the largest European event series specialising in fintech and lending, is hosting the PitchIt competition throughout the conference, which takes place in London, 9th-10th Oct ’17. The eight finalists have been selected from over 100 applicants, and will compete head to head in front of some of Europe’s biggest VCs.