By Daniel Lanyon on Tuesday 14 December 2021
Topi offers B2B payment solutions to firms making the shift to online.
B2B payments fintech Topi has raised a $4.5m pre-seed round co-led by Index Ventures and Creandum.
The Berlin-based company was founded by former employees of Apple and Goldman Sachs, Estelle Merle and Charlotte Pallua in 2021. The two met during their MBA at the Harvard Business School in Boston.
Pallua led a global team working on financing programs, enabling customers to access Apple devices through different financing solutions.
“Companies make purchasing decisions almost on a daily basis. Yet there are no fully digital end-to-end processes in B2B sales and no customer-friendly financing offers. The result for many companies, especially SMEs, are suboptimal purchasing decisions, inefficient use of capital or lengthy bureaucratic processes,” said Pallua, co-founder.
“Our company aims to provide business customers with the opportunity to use our technology and financing solutions to change just that,” she added.
Merle meanwhile spent four years at Goldman Sachs in London structuring financing and hedging strategies for corporate clients. Most recently she was in charge of the European expansion of Via Transportation, a B2B SaaS mobility software company valued at over $3bn.
“We see a clear shift towards the consumerization of enterprise and a great opportunity in providing digital solutions to SMEs. We want to bring our financing solutions to the B2B sales processes, to offer new payment options and thereby contribute our part to allow B2B trade to shift online and allow companies to drive customer retention,” said Merle.
A number of prominent angel investors participated in the round including Dominik Richter (Founder of HelloFresh), Max Tayenthal (Founder of mobile bank N26), and Thijn Lamers (Founding Team Adyen), and Fabian Wesemann (Founder and CFO WeFox).
“Topi has the potential to become the connective tissue that facilitates B2B payments worldwide,” says Jan Hammer, the General Partner at Index who led the investment and has backed companies like Robinhood, Adyen and Wise.
“B2B payments is the unsexy cousin of consumer payments – yet the opportunity is much bigger. The size of the market, the calibre of the Topi team and the creative, unique solution they’ve come up with make this a hugely exciting investment for us,” he added.