FinTech unicorn quadruples headcount, plots further UK growth
Posted on April 6, 2021 by Jonathan Symcox
A scaling global FinTech has revealed plans to double its EMEA workforce following a $100 million funding round.
Airwallex, a multi-currency business account founded in Melbourne, Australia and now headquartered in Hong Kong, has outgrown its London base after quadrupling the team.
“I joined Airwallex last October to build a team that can support our growing business in EMEA, and create the best product experience for our customers,” Jed Rose, General Manager, EMEA told BusinessCloud.
“The EMEA team has already grown from 10 to over 40 and our rate of growth has accelerated at such a pace that we have completely outgrown our former London office. We will be moving into a larger new office in the second half of this year.
“We are on track to more than double our current headcount in the region by the end of 2021 – and we’re looking to fill over 500 open roles.”
The company’s valuation has increased to $2.6 billion with the latest capital raising, which was led by Greenoaks, a US-based backer of Deliveroo and Checkout.com, alongside Australia-based Grok Ventures, Skip Capital and ANZi Ventures.
Lifting Airwallex’s Series D funding to $300m, the company has now raised nearly $500m in total.
In just two years, Airwallex has nearly tripled its valuation, following the company’s unicorn status during its successful Series C fundraising in March 2019.
“FinTech is an engine of growth for many businesses, and the UK remains a core market driving the industry,” added Rose (pictured working remotely below).
“Airwallex is aggressively expanding our talent and services in the UK as we look to support many British businesses who need to more effectively and efficiently manage their international finances during these challenging times.
“Despite Brexit, the UK continues to be a world leader in financial services, playing an important role in connecting businesses with the rest of the world. The high-skilled visa scheme announced in the recent Budget is welcome news, as losing access to global talent would be a huge blow for UK-based FinTech companies. We are actively hiring for many roles in London and Amsterdam and have appreciated the high quality of talent in Europe.
“Compared to other Airwallex markets, the UK is at a different stage of growth. We are a relatively new player into a market with a strong FinTech industry and start-up environment.”
In 2020, Airwallex continued to broaden its suite of products and applications, including multi-currency debit cards with Visa – enabling businesses to pay suppliers with ease and offer expense cards to employees – a bank feed integration with Xero, an SMB rewards program, and online payment acceptance capabilities.
“The world will only become more digital, and with more businesses than ever now operating online, Airwallex has proudly been at the centre of this evolution,” said Jack Zhang, co-founder and CEO.
“The additional investment is a vote of confidence in the global financial infrastructure we have built, as we look to empower businesses to grow without borders.
“This year, we are focused on our global expansion. We continue to extend our international footprint, and are bolstering our capabilities through partnerships and new product launches.
“Strengthening our investor base with the addition of Greenoaks will also help us accelerate that progress. We look forward to their support as we forge ahead on our journey to become a global financial cloud.”
The company has over 600 employees across 12 global offices, and is still looking to fill over 500 open roles.
Patrick Backhouse at Greenoaks said: “We believe Airwallex is building a powerful global payments business, with a rich product suite that helps companies simplify their financial infrastructure as they scale globally.
“From its origins in Australia, Airwallex chose to build global products from day one, and has developed a deep understanding of emerging payment technologies. We look forward to supporting the company as it extends their global reach.”