March 14, 2017
Detroit MI: Autobooks, a financial technology company that builds cash management tools to help small business owners, announced the closing of a $5.5 million Series A financing round led by Draper Triangle. This investment follows the company’s self-funded $2M seed round, enabling the company to expand its team and product offering while increasing distribution channels. Participating in the investment are CU Solutions Group, Baird Capital, Detroit Venture Partners and Invest Michigan.
We are really pleased to have such a strong group of local and national investors, including VC funds and a strategic partner, said Autobooks CEO Steve Robert. This funding will enable us to expand our operations, which is already well underway with multiple credit unions and banks, and to refine our product, sales, distribution, and marketing strategies to better serve small businesses.
Small businesses are underserved by financial institutions. Often, they are too small for commercial products and too large or complex for consumer tools. Autobooks has developed a platform to enable credit unions and banks to offer a compelling digital experience tailored to the unique needs of small businesses. A recent Barlow Research study states that 70% of small businesses would use a cash flow management tool if it were offered by their primary financial institution. Autobooks helps banks and credit unions expand beyond basic bill pay functionality, providing small business customers with a simple, yet comprehensive ‘bundled’ tool for receivables, payables, payments and accounting – all from within their existing online banking system.
Autobooks is an exciting combination of entrepreneurial innovation allied with credit unions and banks that have existing distribution access to small business customers, said Jonathan Murray, Managing Director, Draper Triangle. There is tremendous opportunity for financial institutions to partner with FinTech companies, especially those that understand how to navigate the complex financial, technical and regulatory environments.
Small business owners are looking to increase cash flow while reducing expenses by moving business functions to digital channels that create efficiencies and extend the business day past branch and post office hours. Financial institutions are organizing themselves to meet the changing needs and expectations of more sophisticated small business owners.
The founders of Autobooks have experience with payment and accounting systems, as they previously built Troy, MI-based Billhighway – which served large enterprises. The team successfully scaled that business to millions of users, processing billions of dollars annually. The Autobooks team has unique domain knowledge and a compelling vision for a new generation of banking applications, says industry veteran Don Layden, a Venture Partner at Baird Capital.
We’re seeing tremendous interest in small business cash-management and integrated accounting solutions from financial institutions small and large, says Mr. Robert. Banks and credit unions are looking for differentiated product offerings that not only deliver value for their members, but create new revenue streams and lending opportunities.