Founded in 2021 by Sri Teja and Aditya, fintech startup Swipe has raised $2 Mn in its seed round to fund product development and expansion plans
Swipe allows users to create invoices, purchase orders, automate inventory management, create online storefronts and catalogues, manage online payments on one platform
It competes with the likes of growth-stage startups FloBiz’s myBillBook and IndiaMart backed Vyapar
India is home to more than 6.3 Cr of small and medium businesses (SMBs). A majority of them still rely on kaccha bills, age-old bahi-khatas, managing their accounting books offline. The SMBs which are using digital modes are distraught due to needing multiple platforms to solve multiple needs — first making a bill, creating accounts based on those bills and then filing company returns.
Plagued with a similar problem, ex-Amazon and Great Learning execs Sri Teja Allaparthi and Aditya Vemuganti decided to create a one-stop invoicing solution for the offline Bharat with their venture Swipe. The duo founded Swipe in 2021 to help stores automate invoicing and accounting.
The startup has raised $2 Mn in a seed funding round. Led by Y Combinator, the round also saw participation from Global Founders Capital, Soma Capital, Locus Ventures, Duro Ventures, Lish & Oliver Jung.
25+ angels, including CRED’s Kunal Shah, Justin Hamilton, GoCardless’ Matthew Jack Robinson, Podium’s Dennis Steele & Brad Jenson, Spenmo’s Mohandass Kalaichelvan, OKCredit’s Gaurav Kumar and Alan Rutledge participated in the round.
How Swipe Works
Using Swipe, business owners can create invoices, purchase orders and quotations in less than 10 seconds without any accounting knowledge.
A retailer needs to make an online catalogue on Swipe’s dashboard. Through the dashboard, during the billing time, the retailer needs to choose the product(s), add consumer name and mobile number, and create an e-bill which gets sent to the customer’s WhatsApp number and even email IDs.
Swipe automates the creation of sales reports, sales summaries and customer profiles. Based on the sales, purchases and expenses, the startup automatically updates inventory, payables and receivables.
It makes it easy for retailers to manage accounting by instantly generating all monthly tax filings. In the case of credit payments, the startup also provides payment links and QR codes so that customers can pay quickly.
The software-as-a-service (SaaS) startup comes in a freemium version. While the mobile app is entirely free, it provides limited ease of use. The desktop version — the freemium version, on the other hand, is priced at INR 1,299 – INR 2,499 and provides added features such as personalised bills, catalogue sharing (i.e. providing an online storefront).
The funding round will help the founders to make the Swipe app more holistic, i.e. allowing offline stores to deliver marketing campaigns in the form of SMS, WhatsApp, adding language support including Bengali and Kannada and acquiring more consumers across Tier 2 and 3 cities.
With a roadmap of being a one-stop solution for every accounting need for an offline business — from invoicing to GST & tax filing to sales accounting, inventory management and even providing online product catalogues — Swipe plans to grow from $10K in ARR to $1 Mn by CY23.
At The Juncture Of Dukaan X Tally X Khatabook?
Speaking on the comparison, cofounder Aditya tells Inc42 that Dukaan allows businesses to go online while Khatabook allows users to manage their ledgers.
“There is a big market between those two, where a lot of operations happen, and they use legacy softwares like Tally, Quickbooks, Zoho Books — which only do accounting. And even though it is good accounting, there is no reward for it, that is the business will not get and revenue from it,” he said.
Swipe was founded on the premise of monetising the consumer base, while accounting gets automated. “For a small business who competes with the likes of Amazon, needless to say, every rupee of increased revenue is like gold for them. They need tools to compete — especially tech tools, to reach a lot of consumers, build long term relationships with — basically communicate.”
Thus, instead of cold callings, the startup helps retailers build a pitch for its existing consumer. It not only reduces acquisition costs but also translates into word-of-mouth marketing, bringing newer users faster.
“We provide online storefront as SMBs are now moving towards WhatsApp Businesses. But WhatsApp Business only provides limited product listing,” he added.
Interestingly, the market that Swipe aims to acquire has not been underpenetrated. Several companies have decided to tap into the opportunities in this segment as the country stepped into lockdown in 2020.
Indian SMBs started taking their digitisation seriously and started opting in for solutions that would make inventory management, bookkeeping and digital transactions easier and more efficient.
Founded in 2019 by Rahul Raj, Rakesh Yadav and Aditya Naik, FloBiz’s offers a cloud-based invoice management app ‘myBillBook’ for SMBs. The startup last raised $10 Mn in March 2021 for team expansion, product development and to accelerate its sales and marketing efforts. It has a consumer base of 10 Mn+.
In January 2022, business accounting startup Vyapar bagged $30 Mn as part of its Series B funding and has over 3 Mn users.