Sleek secures $ 14 million Series A to enhance its enterprise services platform – TechCrunch
Entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) often find it difficult to manage several siled functions, such as company secretariat, accounting, banking, tax, payroll, employment services, insurance , etc.
French entrepreneurs Julien Labruyere and Adrien Barthel founded Sleek in 2017 to help entrepreneurs start and operate businesses in Singapore and Hong Kong. The startup has built a back-end operating system platform that handles everything from incorporation, government, accounting, taxes and visas to regulatory compliance.
Its mission is to be the go-to platform for entrepreneurs and business owners who want to focus on building their business because Sleek takes all the back office hassle out of the way, Barthel said.
Sleek announced today that it has secured a $ 14 million Series A funding round led by White Star Capital and Jungle Ventures. This brings Sleek’s total raised to $ 24 million.
The new capital will be used to strengthen technology and product development, increase its workforce, expand its presence in existing markets and enter new markets, including Australia and the United Kingdom.
Entering the UK market, Sleek also announced the acquisition of Ltd Companies, the UK-based incorporation management company that has incorporated more than 450,000 companies since its founding in 2005. Sleek will add its stack to companies. Ltd offering to build an operating system for UK based SMEs.
Since its inception, Sleek has expanded its offices beyond Singapore to Hong Kong, Australia, the UK and the Philippines.
The startup doubled the size of its customer portfolio during the pandemic; the interesting point is that Sleek’s customers seem less affected by the global economic crisis, Barthel told TechCrunch. It generated $ 10 million in annual recurring revenue earlier this year, Barthel noted.
Sleek, which manages a portfolio of more than 5,000 companies, processed more than 1.4 million accounting transactions and had approximately $ 700 million in revenue in 2020.
Sleek recently launched Sleek Business Account which simplifies opening bank accounts for SMEs. It allows entrepreneurs and small business owners to open a deposit account in just one day through the Sleek app and start transacting, removing the heavy red tape before opening an account. Additionally, users can view account details on the Sleek dashboard along with other business metrics to streamline bank reconciliation for accounting and bookkeeping purposes. The company also plans to launch products dealing with remittances and card issuance.
âWith the launch of Sleek Business Account, we have added a major brick to our product vision of creating the operating system (OS) for entrepreneurs,â said Barthel.
Sleek has also launched CFO-services at a pilot level that allows experienced CFOs to access a client’s accounting data through a business intelligence tool to provide recommendations and analysis to clients (for budgeting, strategy and fundraising).
âIn a future where technology enables super efficiency for humans, they spend more time advising clients than doing manual labor. Today, our company secretaries advise 4 to 5 times more clients than a traditional actor, and we aim to automate this function 100% so that they can focus only on providing advice to clients â, Barthel told TechCrunch.
âWe believe we can be a great partner for Sleek and leverage our global presence to help solve a fundamental problem for all SMEs and drive their growth in Europe and Australia,â said Eric Martineau-Fortin, Founder and Managing Partner of White Star Capital.
âSleek addresses the deeply underserved challenge of back office management for entrepreneurs and SMEs around the world. Their growth in all geographies and rapid expansion is a testament to the platform’s accelerated adoption and the value it brings to the ecosystem, âsaid David Gowdey, Managing Partner of Jungle Ventures.