Australian Payments Fintech Zepto Secures AUD 25M

AirTree Ventures and Decade Partners have provided $25 million in capital to Zepto in order to support the next wave of innovation “transforming the payments landscape, accelerate company headcount growth and drive Zepto’s international expansion.”

The team at Zepto noted that they are “humbled and thrilled” to announce this first external investment in Zepto after “months of incredible work by [their] team, and inspiring discussions with investors.”

Zepto CEO Chris Jewell said:

“We are excited to partner with AirTree Ventures and Decade Partners on our first external funding round. From our roots as a bootstrapped Byron Bay upstart, Zepto has grown to become a market leader in the payments industry. We intend to use this capital to grow our team and technology in a meaningful, empowering way as we meet the demands of an ever-evolving domestic market, as well as accelerate our expansion into international markets,”

The investment round comes after explosive growth “of 10X YoY revenue growth over four financial years since 2018.”

Zepto is now facilitating over $4 billion in payment volume “each month, and currently serves hundreds of Australian businesses including Binance Australia, Superhero, Novatti Group, Nimble, Powerpay, Till Payments, Bluestone, Rentbetter, Biz Pay and Get Blys.”

From their roots as a bootstrapped Byron Bay upstart, Zepto has “grown to become a market leader in the payments industry.”

Zepto CCO Carolyn Breeze remarked:

“There were a few Ah-ha moments for me. But the most wonderful thing was the validation that we were on the right track, that the opportunity we see, and the ambition we have was not lost on the investors. Not one of them said, ‘Oh, that’s too ambitious’, or, ‘We don’t think you guys can get there for these reasons’. The feedback was so positive, it inspired us to aim even higher.”

A cross-departmental team of Zepto’s senior leadership “contributed to the pitch and presentations which evolved dramatically.”

As mentioned in the update, it is “fair to say that the team over-thought and over-rehearsed the presentation initially.”

But as the meetings progressed, and the investors grasped the opportunity in the Zepto product, they “quickly became more interested in responses to questions like, ‘What are you excited about?’ ‘What are you passionate about?'”

According to Carolyn:

“The process became less about the pitch or the scalability of our offering––that was a given quite early on. From that point, the level of personal engagement deepened. There was a much greater sense of, OK, we want to spend more time with each of you. That helped the investors answer the questions they were asking themselves: Do we believe in these people? Are they genuine people? Are they good people? Can they execute?”

Carolyn added

“What I loved was that it became a constantly reaffirming conversation that got heightened and more intense as we went along. It was clear they were investing, not just in the business, but in the people within it.”

Tom Hordern, Co founder at Decade Partners, who noted:

“Merchants are choosing Zepto because it’s fast, secure and most importantly developer first and led. These attributes are key to Zepto’s success, and Decade Partners believe this can be traced back to Zepto’s exceptional team and culture.”

James Cameron, Partner at AirTree Ventures, added:

“The global payments landscape is in the middle of its biggest upheaval in decades, as open banking and real-time, bank-to-bank payments are transforming how we pay and get paid. With open banking and the NPP, Australia has found itself at the centre of this disruption – and Zepto is the leading innovator in this space. We believe Chris and the Zepto team are part of the next generation of fintech pioneers.”

For more details on this update, check here.

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