Japan-based Online Accounting Software company, Freee has secured USD 6 million in Series B2 funding from Pavilion Capital and Recruit Strategic Partners. In April, it had secured USD 8 million from DCM and Infinity Ventures in Series B1 funding round. The company aims to utilized the raised funds to accelerate its development and further strengthen its market leading position among Japanese SMB market.
Launched in 2012 by ex-Googler Daisuke Sasaki, freee is used by over 120,000 SMBs in Japan to focus on their core businesses. Since its inception, the company has been investing in improving the product by increasing bank coverage (1,600+ local banks supported), adding features, launching iOS and Android apps, and integrating with major SMB tools such as Square and AirRegi (a POS app by Recruit).
In May 2014, freee also launched cloud based payroll product that is expected to automate payroll tasks. It syncs with bank and credit card accounts to categorize income and spending items to automate bookkeeping as well as assist with other functions like tax filing and payroll management.
The other player also included in this space such as MoneyForward, which has winning a business partnership with Yahoo Finance and also integrating Rakuten Edy accounts into its software.
“In Japan, SaaS penetration among SMBs is still around 17%. SMBs did not choose SaaS for accounting tasks until freee was launched. We successfully opened this market by offering the first online accounting software that can truly automate bookkeeping and help SMBs to run their businesses more effectively. The strong investor support that we have secured this year affirms the value we bring to the market. With this new funding, we will continue to add more features to our product, innovate ways to help SMBs, and accelerate freee’s growth. We have added payroll product in May and launched a new expense report feature today. We are on the mission to help SMBs simplify and automate backoffice tasks as a whole. Our goal is to be the leading business management cloud platform for SMBs.” said Daisuke Sasaki CEO and Founder of Freee.
Singapore-based investment firm Pavilion Capital focuses on private equity investments in North Asia. Recruit Strategic Partners is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Recruit in Japan, a venture capital firm investing in startups from around the world.