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Exclusive: Payments fintech Apron raises $5.5M from Bessemer

Jun 13, 2023
Illustration of a cursor holding a stack of hundred dollar bills

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Apron, a payments startup looking to be the Bill Holdings of the U.K., raised $5.5 million in funding led by Bessemer Venture Partners.

Why it matters: Apron joins the wave of fintech startups looking to bring the convenience of apps such as Venmo or Cash App to the business world.

How it works: Focused on small businesses, Apron seeks to simplify all outgoing payments — including accounts payable, payroll, and reimbursements.

  • It syncs with accounting software like QuickBooks and Xero, and automatically logs when payments go out in real-time — cutting out the reconciliation process.
  • Apron allows its companies to make batch payments — paying out multiple parties at once.
  • Like Bill, Apron is also looking to breach the expense management software space.

What they're saying: "Product simplicity is table stakes with SMBs," says CEO Bogdan Uzbekov.

  • "To get their attention, products needs to be extremely slick and simple. It doesn't need to require any active learning — it's consumer grade."

Context: Uzbekov was previously the European operations lead for Block's Cash App, and he was product lead for Revolut before that.

  • Currently U.K.-focused, Apron plans to expand into the European Union in the future.

Of note: The company makes money from subscriptions, payments, and foreign exchange fees.

What we're watching: Apron is not alone in its space, and competes with Telleroo, Credec, and Comma to at least some extent.

  • Expense management businesses in Europe like Payhawk and Pleo also have launched accounts payable products.
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