French startup Swile has raised a $200 million Series D funding spherical led by SoftBank International Group. With this funding spherical, the startup has now reached unicorn standing, that means that Swile has a valuation of $1 billion or extra. Swile gives a cost card for employee benefits, akin to meal vouchers, reward playing cards and sustainable mobility vouchers.
Michel Combes, SoftBank International Group’s President (pictured left), is becoming a member of Swile’s board. Some of the startup’s current buyers are taking part as soon as once more, akin to Eurazeo, Index Ventures and Bpifrance. Headline can be investing in Swile for the primary time.
This is a major spherical for the corporate because it retains elevating larger rounds yr after yr. Swile raised a Series A spherical of $17.4 million (€15 million) in 2018, a Series B spherical of $34.7 million (€30 million) in 2019 and a Series C spherical of $81 million (€70 million) in 2020.
Swile began as a cost card to carry your meal vouchers. In France, corporations need to contribute to lunch when it’s in the midst of a piece day. Some corporations provide a cafeteria with low-cost meals, others hand out meal vouchers that you would be able to spend in eating places and bakeries.
But the expertise is a bit complicated once you’re paying for lunch. Employees typically ask whether or not a restaurant accepts meal vouchers. And if you wish to spend greater than your day by day finances, you must use two playing cards.
With Swile, staff can optionally add their private debit card to the Swile app. When you spend greater than your day by day restrict, Swile mechanically costs your private card. It’s a greater expertise for the tip person.
And this product alone has been fairly profitable. Just 4 years after launch, Swile has captured a 13% market share on meal vouchers in France. It competes with well-established corporations, akin to Edenred, UpDéjeuner, Sodexo’s Pass Restaurant and Apetiz. Swile generates income on interchange charges.
In addition to small and medium corporations, the startup has managed to persuade larger shoppers, akin to grocery store chain Carrefour and its 65,000 staff in France. Other shoppers embody Doctolib, Spotify and Airbnb in France.
“Our bet with Swile — as we disclosed it 18 months ago — is that we want to go beyond lunch and manage employee benefits with the Swile card. It should help you manage all your employee benefits,” Swile founder and CEO Loïc Soubeyrand informed me.
For occasion, employee representatives often provide reward playing cards for the tip of the yr. Instead of handing out paper checks, the employee consultant our bodies can prime up the Swile card with these reward playing cards. After that, the employee can use the identical card for lunch and for Christmas presents. Swile has acquired Sweevana for that a part of the enterprise.
Similarly, Swile will quickly allow you to pay for ride-sharing, public transport subscriptions or bike rides between your property and your workplace. In France, this can be a nascent market as corporations should contribute to sustainable mobility spendings beginning on January 1st.
“This is what’s great with unification. You don’t need five different cards to manage five different benefits,” Soubeyrand stated. And corporations don’t want 5 options with 5 completely different suppliers both.
From an excellent card to an excellent app
Beyond the Swile card and its transactional income, the startup desires to construct an app to enhance inner communications, run nameless surveys and collect suggestions from staff. This may open up some income alternatives with a software-as-a-service strategy and month-to-month subscriptions.
The firm has been testing its app in beta for the final 12 months and it ought to be out there to Swile shoppers quickly. Swile has acquired Briq for its experience on that space.
In the longer term, small corporations may additionally think about managing their company spending from Swile. You don’t essentially want a full-fledged, separate resolution to handle bills once you’re simply getting began.
Up subsequent, Swile additionally has bold worldwide targets. Brazil is by far the most important market relating to employee benefits. With the acquisition of Vee Benefícios, Swile now has 120 staff in São Paulo and it desires to show Brazil into its primary market.
By 2022, Swile desires to rent 500 staff — the corporate will double in measurement. There can be extra worldwide expansions as nicely. Mexico appears to be like like one other promising market for occasion. Even if these worldwide bets take time to repay, Swile continues to be simply getting began in its house market. It nonetheless has a tiny market share and a variety of room for development.