Q&A: TripActions’ latest cash injection
As TripActions announces its latest funding round, we spoke to its VP Marketing EMEA Simone Buckley
You’ve raised another $275 million. What will this be used for?
Principally, we plan to double down on TripActions Liquid, our fintech payments and expense management solution, and expand the international footprint of TripActions Liquid in support of global enterprise customers. We are looking to roll out Liquid in the UK and Europe in the very near future.
Also front of mind is a deeper investment in Reed & Mackay, which we recently acquired, and broader European expansion. We plan to add more than 150 people to our teams in the UK, Israel, and across Europe by the end January. We are also opening up new markets. We have a new VP in France and in Germany and these teams will continue to expand as well as other new markets. Europe has grown to represent 30% of our business.
We will also continue to ramp up our personal travel booking offering, Lemonade, which has already grown nearly 10 times in booking volume this fiscal year. As the lines blur between office and home, TripActions Lemonade offers the same celebrated user experience to travellers across their personal and business lives. It gives travellers the chance to seamlessly add on a personal day to a business trip or book their next family holiday.
And, of course, we will continue to invest in core travel as TripActions has become an essential tool for companies as they enter the future of work, with industry-leading features relating to health and safety, team travel, duty of care, granular real-time data, and sustainability initiatives that include an industry-first SAF offering in partnership with Neste.
Is it unusual for a company to raise funds as often as this?
There’s never been a better time for TripActions to expand. We’ve seen global demand for tech-forward solutions skyrocket as a result of the pandemic. From granular sustainability reporting to fintech-powered expense solutions, the entire T&E stack is undergoing a tech makeover and TripActions is leading the charge.
In the Series F we were able to continue working with trusted investors who know our business deeply and support our goals, while also justifying a significant increase in the company’s enterprise value. We will keep pursuing our ongoing efforts to prepare for the financial rigours of being a public company, and will continue evaluating ALL channels of funding options in the future.
How is the valuation of $7.25 billion calculated?
Valuations are based on a variety of different factors, including growth, revenue and market opportunity. The valuation is in line with the value we are delivering to our customers, our market potential, our proprietary global infrastructure, service, and support model we’ve built, our continued growth, and the unique, best-in-class experience we’re delivering to our users. No player in the industry has been able to replicate these individual differentiators, let alone bring them all together to deliver value that’s close to TripActions.
Are you seeing a recovery in business travel?
Our booking volume has now exceeded pre-Covid levels thanks to increased market share and product innovations that have differentiated TripActions and enabled corporate travellers to get back on the road sooner than manual and disparate legacy options.
How have you managed to gain market share?
Nearly two-thirds of businesses have or are planning to switch travel management solutions as a result of the pandemic; indeed, the pandemic has shifted how enterprise companies approach travel and expenses; TripActions is the only complete end-to-end T&E solution poised to support companies for the future. Additionally, there’s been a growing realisation that, like Big Finance or as an extension of that, T&E is ripe for a tech makeover.
When the pandemic forced businesses to speed up their usage of digital tools, the demand for modern T&E and fintech exploded. Between February 1, 2020 and July 31 2021, TripActions more than doubled its aggregate travel budget under management, while expense budget under management grew 1400% over the same period. Recent European enterprise customer wins include Heineken, Springer Nature and Primark.
How is the roll-out of TripActions Liquid going?
In the past six months, Liquid has achieved more than 500% growth in transaction volume and nearly 400% growth in active users in the US. Legacy options require finance teams to review every expense transaction but TripActions Liquid transactions are powered by physical and virtual corporate smart cards, so just 5–10% require review. This reduced reporting hours up to 66% and reconciliation time up to 95%. For end-to-end TripActions enterprise customers, reconciliation time is reduced from weeks to just hours. We are looking to launch Liquid in Europe in the near future.