Bill.com, a platform that connects payments and receivables and manages cash flow, has raised $38 million in an oversubscribed round led by new investor Scale Venture Partners.
The round also included participation from Bank of America, American Express, Fifth Third Bank, CheckFree founder Pete Kight, and Commerce Ventures. Bill.com’s previous investors all participated in the funding, which now brings its total raised to $80 million.
The funding round is significant, considering the number of financial institutions participating in the financing. CEO and Co-Founder René Lacerte said in an interview yesterday that banks process electronically about 80 percent of consumer payments while businesses do just 20 percent. But the business sector is gaining momentum and the banks want to leverage that adoption. The problem: they don’t have the expertise or the focus as a business to manage the messy connectivity required for managing complex data workflows. With Bill.com they can provide customers with the services needed to automate back-office operations.
The Bill.com platform uses APIs to connect banks and accounting services such as Xero. The service helps customers collaborate to create connections that encompasses an ecosystem of partners and application partners tha are connected through a network of data pipes that filter data accordingly. Until recently this data has largely been cemented in spreadsheets, invoices and other traditional back-office means of doing business.
Providing services for payables, receivables and cash management rests at the core of what the company provides its customers and it will invest accordingly with the new funding. For payables, as an example, Bill.com will add more features for the larger companies it is attracting to its platform. In terms of receivables, the company will integrate with CRM providers to allow sales orders to be turned into invoicing through the Bill.com platform. It will also enable customers to extend their own platforms to their clientele and, by default, build out the Bill.com service. Additionally, cash flow capabilities will be enhanced with more visualization features.
The Bill.com platform is the company’s greatest challenge but also its greatest asset. As it grows, the platform will also have to be fortified. Like with any SaaS, that means tradeoffs and a slower rate of development, which exposes it to competition in the form of younger, nimbler competitors.
Bill.com has developed a service that abstracts the deep complexity of back-office operations. That level of automation gives it the capability to be at the forefront of the digital transformation of business commerce. Its challenge is staying ahead and not getting bogged down with an information architecture that slows development too much.
With hefty funding, Bill.com has room to grow, but it is still a ways from reaching a milestone such as an IPO, It will have to boost revenues in face of deep competition from the likes of Netsuite, QuickBooks and Concur, all established players with deep market penetration.
(Feature image courtesy of Daniel X. O’Neil on Flickr through Creative Commons)