Swiss fintech startup Yokoy raises $80M in Series B funding led by Sequoia to help companies manage their expenses
It’s been a while since we last covered Yokoy, a Swiss fintech startup that helps companies manage their expenses. Formerly known as Expense Robot, the company rebranded to Yokoy in August 2020. Since then, Yokoy has grown exponentially and has caught the attention of high-profile venture firms looking for the next tech giants in Europe.
In a blog post this week, Yokoy announced it has raised $80 million in Series B funding to accelerate the growth of its business and team and revolutionize the way companies spend money. The round was led by Sequoia Capital, with participation also from Speedinvest, Visionaries Club, Zinal Growth, and all existing investors. The round, which now values Yokoy at more than $500 million, brings the total funding raised by the company to more than $107 million.
Founded in 2019 by CEO Philippe Sahli, Thomas Inhelder, Lars Mangelsdorf, and Melanie Gabriel, Yokoy sells expense software to mainly large businesses, including the postal service DPD and train manufacturer Stadler. Yokoy currently competes with tech giants in the world of expense management like SAP and Coupa Software.
Yokoy’s vision is to leverage Artificial Intelligence to fully automate all expense- and business credit card processes to save time and money, increase employee satisfaction, reduce complexity and ensure compliance.
Unlike traditional digital solutions, the company’s technology simplifies the process for all-expense management stakeholders – employees, managers, and the finance team – all the way up to booking it into the ERP system. The flexibility of the technology further allows complex setups and thereby supports multi-legal entity, multi-currency, and rank-specific policies.
Yokoy also said it will also use the fresh funding to pursue expansion in Europe. The startup recently opened up an office in the Netherlands — and hire more staff. With the help of Sequoia, the company aims to eventually enter the U.S. “I think it makes total sense,” Sahli added.
“There are many areas where this new funding will come to use,” Sahli says. In brief, all signs point to continued growth: After having set up our European hub in Amsterdam just a month ago, we are aiming to expand further into Europe and beyond in the course of this year. Apart from that, we will increase hiring and enhance the technologies underpinning our spend management platform – from further developing our AI, automation, and security systems, to advancing our Yokoy Pay offering.
Sahli explains that “Most of our customers tend not to have an enterprise-level spend management solution.” He also added that Yokoy’s target clients typically rely on “siloed” IT systems that are isolated from other parts of the business.
For us, completing the Series B round now opens a completely new chapter. “Over the last three years, we have proven that we understand the needs of our customers and that we can build innovative, enterprise-grade products that address their problems,” Sahli says. But that is just the beginning: “In the end, we do not want to be just another company that automates processes or that claims to have better company credit cards – we want to change the way companies spend money at its core. Given the trust that our investors have put in us, we are sure that we are on the right track.”