Our investment in Swan: Turning the embedded finance dream into a reality
The idea that every technology company - consumer and B2B - is set to offer financial services alongside their core product isn't a new one. The days where banking is solely the realm of banks are now long gone and - rather than being offered as a standalone product - financial services are becoming attributes of larger value propositions. You can find them embedded in software, marketplaces, and platform applications. But deploying embedded finance products has remained time-consuming, expensive, and fraught with regulatory complexities. Consequently, only the few companies who could afford to dedicate the required resources to embedded finance could deliver on the dream – thereby limiting its scope.
Now, the tides are turning.
The behavioural shifts and expectation changes we’ve seen over the last 18 months - from both a business and consumer perspective - have ensured embedding financial services into existing offerings is now a must rather than a nice-to-have. By doing so, companies have the ability to enhance user experience, strengthen customer loyalty, increase retention and create new revenue streams. In parallel to behaviour changes, a new generation of BaaS platforms has emerged. Enter Swan.
Swan’s API-first product offers accounts, cards and IBANs to software companies, marketplaces, and platforms across Europe. The company enables its clients to become their own customers’ bank within hours - without banking infrastructure or regulation requirements. In short, Swan democratizes access to embedded financial services. Current use cases powered by Swan include corporate expense cards, accounting automation, treasury management, benefits cards, property management, payment of salaries and more.
Just months after its launch earlier this year, dozens of partners now use Swan’s BaaS platform to integrate white-labeled banking features such as accounts, cards, and IBANs into existing workflows and UX via APIs. Agicap, Alma, Expensya, Fintecture, Mon Bel Appart and Pennylane, are just some of the companies who now piggyback on Swan’s e-money license (regulated by France’s ACPR), which is passported across the European Economic Area. Security and regulatory headaches such as Strong Customer Authentication, identity verification, and fraud detection are also dealt with by Swan so companies can focus on their core products.
As Swan announces its Series A, which will accelerate its expansion across Europe, unveils its first customer in Germany (Ride) and sets out plans to become self-service this autumn, we couldn’t be more excited to join the team on the journey ahead.
Our series A partnership with Swan builds on a long series of Accel investments in API-first fintech companies such as Braintree, Galileo, Primer, Socure and Unit. We look forward to supporting the Swan team as they democratize access to embedded financial services throughout Europe. It’s time to make banking services just another tool in a product team's toolbox!