Conta Simples receives investment from Y Combinator and wants to become a digital bank for Brazilian SMEs

August 2, 2020
Editor at Exame magazine
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exame.com
The São Paulo startup caught the eye of an American accelerator with a digital banking solution for small and medium-sized businesses

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The startup Conta Simples is the newest investment in Brazil by the American accelerator Y Combinator , one of the most important companies in the world that invests in technology companies at an early stage.

Founded in 2019 in São Paulo, Conta Simples drew the attention of American investors by creating a digital bank account service aimed exclusively at small and medium-sized companies (SMEs), a niche that is still little explored in Brazil by “ fintechs ” - as they are called technology companies operating in the financial sector.

The service works like a bank account for a legal entity, allowing you to carry out everything from transfers, withdrawals, payments, issue of boleto to manage cash flow. But the big difference, according to founder Rodrigo Tognini, is the possibility for customers to issue unlimited corporate cards to make purchases with suppliers or other types of payments.

Another advantage, according to him, is the possibility of creating different access profiles, so that employees can access the digital account data when necessary. Fees for carrying out transactions tend to be lower than those charged in the market by traditional banks.

About 5,000 companies are already registered in the Simple Account, according to the founder. And, even at an early stage, the company is already close to reaching the so-called “break even”, the balance point between revenues and expenses. The billing comes from the fees paid by customers to use the services and also from the fees charged when paying with credit cards from Conta Simples.

The Conta Simples model is similar to that of the startup Brex, founded in the United States by Brazilian entrepreneurs Pedro Franceschi and Henrique Dubugras, which offers a credit card service for small and medium-sized companies. Brex, which also received investments from Y Combinator, is valued at $ 2.6 billion .

According to Tognini, Brex was one of his inspirations when he founded Conta Simples, as well as the startups Qonto, from France, and Tide, from the United Kingdom, which also offer digital account services for SMEs.

“The digital account revolution in Brazil only happened to individuals. We looked at the SME market and saw that nobody was still serving this type of customer well ”, said Tognini, in an interview with EXAME.

Besides him, the entrepreneurs Fernando Santos, who has worked at Cielo, and Ricardo Gottschalk, who has worked for companies such as Oracle and the fintechs Stone and Creditas, are also partners in the company.

“We decided to invest in the Simple Account for a few reasons. First, because we were impressed with the number of customers they already have. Second, because we were impressed by the founders, their momentum and their focus, ”said Dalton Caldwell, partner of Y Combinator at EXAME.

Conta Simples counts with angel investments from funds such as Big Bets, Domo Invest and Brazil Venture Capital, as well as investors such as Rodrigo Dantas, founder of the startup Vindi, Diego Gomes, from Rock Content, and Dorival Dourado (ex-Serasa and Boa Vista ).

The focus on the small and medium-sized business market is not for nothing. According to a report by PwC consultancy, SMEs represent almost 30% of Brazil's Gross Domestic Product and employ more than 15 million people.

The expectation of Conta Simples is to offer more ease to smaller companies, as in the case of digital accounts for individuals.

“It is a more complex product, so it was natural for the first fintechs to start targeting the individual. But as this market became more saturated, the focus is now on the SME market. The next step is to have credit, financing, insurance startups, also for SMEs ”, says Tognini.

Conta Simples itself intends to launch new services in the coming months, according to him, to meet this demand. One of the tools being developed is the possibility of creating an access profile to integrate the PJ accounts with the companies' accountant systems.

A payroll solution is also being planned, to pay employees' salaries, as well as a credit marketplace platform, so that companies can offer credit services to the startup's client companies. With the contribution of Y Combinator, the expectation is to continue bringing new customers and improving the tool.

Las opiniones compartidas y expresadas por los analistas son libres e independientes, y de ellas son responsables sus autores. No reflejan ni comprometen el pensamiento u opinión de Latam Fintech Hub, por lo cual no pueden ser interpretadas como recomendaciones emitidas por la platafomra. Esta plataforma es un espacio abierto para promover la diversidad de puntos de vista sobre el ecosistema Fintech.

The startup Conta Simples is the newest investment in Brazil by the American accelerator Y Combinator , one of the most important companies in the world that invests in technology companies at an early stage.

Founded in 2019 in São Paulo, Conta Simples drew the attention of American investors by creating a digital bank account service aimed exclusively at small and medium-sized companies (SMEs), a niche that is still little explored in Brazil by “ fintechs ” - as they are called technology companies operating in the financial sector.

The service works like a bank account for a legal entity, allowing you to carry out everything from transfers, withdrawals, payments, issue of boleto to manage cash flow. But the big difference, according to founder Rodrigo Tognini, is the possibility for customers to issue unlimited corporate cards to make purchases with suppliers or other types of payments.

Another advantage, according to him, is the possibility of creating different access profiles, so that employees can access the digital account data when necessary. Fees for carrying out transactions tend to be lower than those charged in the market by traditional banks.

About 5,000 companies are already registered in the Simple Account, according to the founder. And, even at an early stage, the company is already close to reaching the so-called “break even”, the balance point between revenues and expenses. The billing comes from the fees paid by customers to use the services and also from the fees charged when paying with credit cards from Conta Simples.

The Conta Simples model is similar to that of the startup Brex, founded in the United States by Brazilian entrepreneurs Pedro Franceschi and Henrique Dubugras, which offers a credit card service for small and medium-sized companies. Brex, which also received investments from Y Combinator, is valued at $ 2.6 billion .

According to Tognini, Brex was one of his inspirations when he founded Conta Simples, as well as the startups Qonto, from France, and Tide, from the United Kingdom, which also offer digital account services for SMEs.

“The digital account revolution in Brazil only happened to individuals. We looked at the SME market and saw that nobody was still serving this type of customer well ”, said Tognini, in an interview with EXAME.

Besides him, the entrepreneurs Fernando Santos, who has worked at Cielo, and Ricardo Gottschalk, who has worked for companies such as Oracle and the fintechs Stone and Creditas, are also partners in the company.

“We decided to invest in the Simple Account for a few reasons. First, because we were impressed with the number of customers they already have. Second, because we were impressed by the founders, their momentum and their focus, ”said Dalton Caldwell, partner of Y Combinator at EXAME.

Conta Simples counts with angel investments from funds such as Big Bets, Domo Invest and Brazil Venture Capital, as well as investors such as Rodrigo Dantas, founder of the startup Vindi, Diego Gomes, from Rock Content, and Dorival Dourado (ex-Serasa and Boa Vista ).

The focus on the small and medium-sized business market is not for nothing. According to a report by PwC consultancy, SMEs represent almost 30% of Brazil's Gross Domestic Product and employ more than 15 million people.

The expectation of Conta Simples is to offer more ease to smaller companies, as in the case of digital accounts for individuals.

“It is a more complex product, so it was natural for the first fintechs to start targeting the individual. But as this market became more saturated, the focus is now on the SME market. The next step is to have credit, financing, insurance startups, also for SMEs ”, says Tognini.

Conta Simples itself intends to launch new services in the coming months, according to him, to meet this demand. One of the tools being developed is the possibility of creating an access profile to integrate the PJ accounts with the companies' accountant systems.

A payroll solution is also being planned, to pay employees' salaries, as well as a credit marketplace platform, so that companies can offer credit services to the startup's client companies. With the contribution of Y Combinator, the expectation is to continue bringing new customers and improving the tool.

Las opiniones compartidas y expresadas por los analistas son libres e independientes, y solamente sus autores son responsables de ellas. No reflejan ni comprometen el pensamiento o la opinión del equipo de Latam Fintech Hub y, por lo tanto, no pueden interpretarse como recomendaciones emitidas por la plataforma. Esta plataforma es un espacio abierto para promover la diversidad de puntos de vista en el ecosistema Fintech.
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Segmento:
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País de origen:
Headquarters:
Sao Paulo
Monto inversión:
M
Ronda financiación:
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