Payhawk becomes first ever Bulgarian unicorn after raising $100m

Hristo Borisov, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Payhawk

Payhawk, the payment and expense solution with offices in London, Sofia, Berlin, and Barcelona, has raised an additional $100m to extend its Series B round to $215m.

The Series B extension means that the company hits a valuation of $1bn, making Payhawk the first ever Bulgarian company to achieve unicorn status. The company plans to become a catalyst for the Bulgarian startup ecosystem, and continue to retain the top 1% of talent.

Lightspeed Venture Partners, a vc with over $10.5bn under management and prior investments in Affirm, Grafana, Faire, FTX, Personio, Snap, and others, leads the extension, with Sprints Capital, Endeavor Catalyst, HubSpot Ventures and Jigsaw VC also joining.

The additional funding comes 3 months after Payhawk announced the initial tranche of Series B in November 2021 of $115m, and less than a year after its $20m Series A in April 2021.

Payhawk to continue global expansion

With the extra funds, Payhawk now has the financial clout required to aggressively expand its presence in the mid-size enterprise market and continue its ambitious global expansion plans.

Currently, finance teams still do a significant amount of manual work due to multiple disconnected tools for cards, payments, invoices, and expense management.

Payhawk reduces this by combining those key elements in a single platform. The company provides an industry-first 3% cashback on card payments up to the full subscription amount, enabling clients to drive their subscription costs to zero, while benefiting from the software.

Payhawk emerges as the leading platform for large SMEs and enterprise customers, especially those with a multinational footprint. The company serves businesses in 30 countries across a variety of industries, currencies and payment methods.

The fresh capital will be used to further grow Payhawk’s product team by adding 60 additional senior software engineers in Sofia from the top 1% of the market.

This is to meet growing client demand for new features like mileage tracking and per diem, in light of the return of business travel i.e. Other existing features for enterprise clients will be extended too, including Oracle Netsuite integration, Subscription Management and Budgets.

Building on the momentum from the first influx of Series B capital, Payhawk is set to open offices in Amsterdam and Paris in March, and in New York in September. The company’s headcount is also set to triple from 100 to more than 300 by the end of this year, with the extra funds set to fuel a renewed sales and marketing push for further market expansion.

Payhawk’s quick market adaption

Arsham Memarzadeh, Partner at Lightspeed Venture Partners, said, Payhawk is more than just spend management software. It’s a one-stop-shop for finance teams to consolidate the previously disparate systems required to spend, track, process, and budget corporate funds.”

“After getting to know the team for over a year, we’ve been blown away with their pace of product development, building the most thorough market solution in less than four years.

Hristo Borisov, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Payhawk, said, We always knew that we could build a big company if we addressed a significant problem in a large market.

“The size of the opportunity still drives our growth and ambition today. Every employee that deals with company payments feels that there should be a better way to do it, but this huge problem was never tackled by a strong product team with hardcore engineering past.”

“This is what Payhawk brings to the market.”

Becoming the first unicorn in Bulgaria is a huge testament to the hard work and resilience of our team over the last three and a half years. We are just at the beginning of our journey, and we cannot wait to continue reinventing how businesses manage their payments.

About Payhawk

Payhawk is a financial platform that combines expense management, payments and invoice management in one solution and therefore works as a one-stop-shop for finance teams.

Its customer base consists of a mix of fast-growing and mature multinational companies like LuxAir, Lotto24, Viking Life, Gtmhub, Flink, MacPaw and By Miles.

Payhawk is leading the digital transformation agenda of companies like A.T.U in Germany, where the product has replaced cash with company cards at more than 550 branches.

The fintech is headquartered in London and was founded in 2018 by Hristo Borisov and Boyko Karadzhov and later joined by Konstantin Dzhengozov. It is supported by renowned investors such as Greenoaks, QED Investors, Earlybird Digital East and Eleven Ventures.