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Screenshot of a breaking news alert e-mail from Q2 2017
Commercial payment platform provider Behalf has announced that it has raised $27 million in Series C financing from a group of venture capital firms led by Israel’s Viola Growth. Viola was joined by previous Behalf investors Sequoia Capital, Spark Capital, MissionOG, and Vintage Ventures.
The funding will help Behalf rapidly scale growth with increased investment in sales, business development and marketing, support continued product innovation, and bolster its position as a service leader in small business purchase financing.
According to Benjy Feinberg, co-founder and CEO of Behalf:
SMBs are the unsung heroes of the US economy, producing nearly half of the US’ goods and services, responsible for two out of every three new jobs created, and generating the majority of innovation in the process. Yet, they are severely constrained by lack of access to working capital and their financial needs are not a focus area for traditional banks. Behalf has a simple solution, driven by data and technology, that allows us to provide well-priced and flexible credit tools to help SMBs and their suppliers grow profitably. The addition of Viola’s leadership to our team and the growth this round will fund will both help us accelerate our mission.
Business-to-business sales in the US total trillions of dollars annually. Unlike consumer sales, the majority of these are payments made by COD, Check, or ACH. The low penetration of credit-based transactions and limited access to working capital significantly constrains business purchasing in the small business segment and inhibits economic growth. Behalf solves for this friction between business suppliers and purchasers by offering instant credit approvals at the point of sale, with funds immediately released to settle the transaction.
Behalf instantly advances payment to the supplier, then collects the funds from the purchaser’s bank account on a schedule they set. This on demand access to working capital helps suppliers and their customers do more business.
Once approved, SMB customers can use their Behalf line to make purchases at virtually any of their suppliers. For every advance paid to a supplier by Behalf, the customer creates their ideal weekly, monthly, or one-time payment plan. Behalf’s innovative, fully customizable payment schedules give SMBs an unprecedented level of control over how they manage cash flow, with the ability to pay for their business purchases over time, extending up to six months.
The company says that it has doubled revenues every six months since inception.
Harel Beit-On, Viola Growth Founder and General Partner, will join the Behalf Board. Beit-On joins Shmil Levy, Managing Partner of Sequoia Capital; Gene Lockhart, Managing Partner of Mission OG and former CEO of MasterCard; Santo Politi, Founder and General Partner of Spark Capital; Phillip Riese, former President of American Express Consumer Card; and Benjy Feinberg, Co-Founder and CEO of Behalf.
In readying the company to scale, Behalf has strengthened its executive team with a mix of payments industry veterans and proven growth phase operators. Jorgen Bocklage, Founder of 118 118 Money in the UK and former VP of Finance at Dashlane, has been appointed Behalf’s CFO. Brian Kleinberg, a former EVP at American Express who has recently been advising early stage Fintech and e-commerce companies, has joined to lead Strategy. Crystal Eastman, another former American Express Executive who has held positions in the Card area and within the Enterprise Growth Group, signed on as Head of Marketing. Yaniv Shaya, who has held numerous technology leadership roles at HP; Mercury Interactive; and was most recently SVP of Engineering at Imperva, has also joined to lead Engineering and Risk. In the coming 12 months Behalf will be hiring for roles across Sales, Marketing, Account Management, Customer Service, Product, and Engineering in both the New York and Tel Aviv offices.