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Square’s former Australian boss is launching a business payments fintech with $6.3m seed raise

- June 30, 2020 2 MIN READ
late payments
Photo: AdobeStock
A former executive from Jack Dorsey’s payments company Square is launching a new payments and financial services fintech targeting business.

Melbourne-based Zeller, founded by Ben Pfisterer and Dominic Yap, has landed $6.3 million in seed funding led by Square Peg Capital, which previously invested in fintechs such as Stripe, Airwallex, Prospa and Athena, alongside Apex Capital.

Square Peg co-founder Paul Bassat, will join the Zeller board.

Pfisterer previously led the APAC Square team as well as holding leadership roles at Visa, NAB and JetStar, while Yap worked with PwC and other consulting firms.

The fintech won’t seek to cover the business banking ground covered by neobank Judo, and won’t offer business loans, preferring to focus on payments and cash flow as “a complete payment solution for those ready to start new ventures now”.

Pfisterer, both co-founder and CEO, argues there’s been there’s limited competition in the sector, which “kept a lid on innovation”.

“It takes days or weeks to get set up with a business bank account, pricing models are opaque, innovation is relatively non-existent and in-person payment solutions have been left in the past,” he said.

“These are really important, as — despite the growth in ecommerce, which now accounts for 33% of sales — in-person payments remain dominant at 67% and growing, as we see an acceleration towards a cashless economy.”

Zeller won’t launch its first product until the first quarter of 2021.

Pfisterer says current banking and payment solutions “are clunky and unfriendly” and thus “get in the way of the running and growing a business.”

He plans to make it simple to set up a Zeller account as “an all-in-one solution, aligning essential business products and services for owners”.

And as business rebounds from covid-19, Pfisterer wants to position Zeller at the forefront of their financial services.

“These businesses need technology that helps them set up quickly, scale and thrive. They also need innovative solutions which help them efficiently manage the move towards cashless payments and digital banking,” he said.

“Beyond that, now more than ever, cash flow is imperative for businesses, and they need to be more cost-conscious than ever. They’re looking for better, more efficient, digital ways to run their operations that, frankly, don’t exist in the market yet.

“The interaction between a buyer and a seller is starting to rapidly evolve, and we believe that the experience should be so much more than just a monetary exchange.”