As per the EY Global Fintech Adoption Index, the U.K. is Europe’s most mature fintech market for consumers, both in terms of size and usage. However, the rate of adoption of fintech among SMEs in the U.K is far lower, with just 49% of U.K. businesses still using paper cheques to pay suppliers.
Betting big on the segment and attempting to fill the gap between consumer and business payment solutions, French fintech software Libeo has entered the U.K. market to fuel its expansion plans in Europe. The development comes on the back of the startup raising €20 million in funding last year.
The Paris-based platform is simplifying invoices and payments for SMEs. It brings together a community of companies that allows businesses’ managers, financial directors and accountants from SMEs to centralise their invoices, pay and get paid in a simple way, in one click and without changing their bank account. With options such as accounts payable (AP) and accounts receivable (AR) capacities, the solution synchronises with accounting software and banks on the market.
Spearheading the U.K. operations, Glen Foster, managing director for the UK and Northern Europe, said: “I’ve always been passionate about SMEs and accountants and bookkeepers, and Libeo gives me the opportunity to continue to support both, with great technology. I know all too well the challenges with paying and getting paid, and the impact that can have on a business owner. Equally, I’ve seen over the last 15 years how accountants specifically have widened their services to incorporate things such as supplier payments for clients, giving clients the time back to focus on running successful businesses.”
Co-founder and CEO of Libeo, Pierre Dutaret said: “Our success in France is a strong indicator of the needs of the sector. The issues faced by our French customers are similar to those we identified in the UK - particularly within the SME segment - and we are confident that we can respond to them in a very relevant way. Our expansion into the U.K. supports our ambition to become the European leader in business-to-business payments.”