ZenBusiness Raises $200M in Series C Funding From Oak HC/FT and SoftBank Vision Fund 2 to Empower Entrepreneurs to Create Successful Businesses
ZenBusiness, the only one-stop guided platform tailored for the entrepreneur’s journey to launch, run, and grow a successful business, announced the close of a $200 million Series C funding round, valuing the company at $1.7 billion. As the largest SaaS financing round out of Austin this year, ZenBusiness becomes the latest unicorn in Texas. The funding round was led by Oak HC/FT, with backing from SoftBank Vision Fund 2, and existing investors Cathay Innovation and Greycroft.
Since 2017, ZenBusiness has been on a mission to redefine entrepreneurism in the U.S. and empower people to live and work differently. By providing easy-to-use digital tools, fintech solutions, educational resources, and world-class customer support, ZenBusiness is making it easier for hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs, gig workers, online sellers, real estate investors, artists, and freelancers to turn their business ideas into reality. The ZenBusiness platform has grown more than 400% since March 2020 and now helps over 200,000 US entrepreneurs on their journey from inspiration to business formation and growth.
With this new round of funding, ZenBusiness will continue to invest in the products that help propel customer growth and manage ongoing success, including the ZenBusiness app which centralizes all services in one easy-to-use dashboard. The app provides users with step-by-step directions to master business ownership, from how to form your LLC and create a website, to customized recommendations on how to take your business to the next level.
“As a serial entrepreneur, I understand the challenges that come with launching and running your own business”
The company will also accelerate its embedded fintech capabilities through new product features that help customers manage their finances, including creating a customized, guided pathway to get each customer to their first dollar of revenue faster. ZenBusiness customers will have an integrated platform to manage all finance-related organization needs. They will connect their bank account, automatically categorize expenses with AI, and send invoices – all at no cost. Furthermore, users will be able to collect payments via invoices or through e-commerce sites and file their taxes using either software or a CPA.
“ZenBusiness has revolutionized the process of launching and running a successful business,” said Ross Buhrdorf, Founder and CEO of ZenBusiness. “Like Shopify® did for e-commerce, ZenBusiness is creating the category-defining solution for the service sector, providing an easy-to-use platform with embedded fintech solutions so entrepreneurs can turn their ideas into money-making realities. We handle the ‘business stuff’ so our customers can focus on their passion and build the life they want, stress-free and without sacrificing their well-being.”
As the pandemic took hold, many pursued entrepreneurship, leaving their occupations to forge their own path in life, escape the banality of corporate America, or start a new business to make ends meet. In fact, according to a ZenBusiness survey, of those who filed their business since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic (i.e., March 2020), half say the pandemic gave them the inspiration they needed (49%) to start their business.
“ZenBusiness’s fintech offerings change the game for how entrepreneurs manage and track their finances,” said Matt Streisfeld, Partner at Oak HC/FT. “By democratizing financial management, ZenBusiness is simplifying merchant services and putting financial power back in the hands of business owners. We’re thrilled to partner with ZenBusiness at a time when entrepreneurs are now more than ever in need of digital tools to help them grow and become successful.”
“New business formations have surged during the pandemic and this next generation of entrepreneurs need the right technology tools and resources that help them grow their businesses from an idea to a successful reality,” said Kristin Bannon, Investment Director at SoftBank Investment Advisers. “ZenBusiness is building the new ‘operating system’ for growing businesses with support from a team of trusted experts who are changing the face of entrepreneurism in the US. We are excited to be partnering with Ross and the team to create the simplest way to start and run a successful business.”
In addition to the funding, ZenBusiness announced that billionaire investor and entrepreneur Mark Cuban will be joining the company as a passionate advocate and spokesperson to accelerate the company’s transformation into a trusted and beloved brand for entrepreneurs. Known worldwide as one of the sharpest minds in business, Cuban will work with ZenBusiness to turn the brand into a household name synonymous with entrepreneurial success.
“As a serial entrepreneur, I understand the challenges that come with launching and running your own business,” said Mark Cuban. “But business owners don’t have to do it alone. They can have an expert every step of the way to guide them on their journey towards business success. ZenBusiness is that personal business coach, helping hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs get their businesses off the ground. I am proud to be an advisor to this inspirational team and serve as a brand advocate, representing the future of entrepreneurism in the U.S.”