The firm empowers SMEs by connecting them with businesses outside their domestic market and routing cross-border payments.
Business-to-business (B2B) players in India have been aggressively engaging with small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) and introducing them to bigger market opportunities. Global companies also joined the party when New York-headquartered Payoneer, a cross-border digital payment provider, initiated its India operations in 2015 to bring together marketplaces, service providers, exporters and regulators. Payoneer empowers SMEs by connecting them with businesses outside their domestic market and routing cross-border payments across the globe. While start-ups such as Shopify and Shopmatic assist SMEs on the e-commerce front, Payoneer is focused on empowering digital payments among small businesses. “We look at building awareness around digital commerce and get SMEs comfortable with the idea of digital payments,” says Scott Galit, CEO, Payoneer. The 4-million-strong clientele of Payoneer includes large corporations such as Airbnb, Amazon, Getty Images, Google and UpWork. To facilitate payments across the globe, Payoneer has a network of over 40 banks and financial partners such as Bank of America, Deutsche Bank, RBS, Barclays, PingAn, MasterCard, Indusind Bank and ICICI Bank. Payoneer provides companies with local currency accounts around the world and a global banking infrastructure.
Galit believes that its specialisation in cross-border payments gives it an edge over other companies which are in the business of nurturing SMEs for e-commerce. There is a host of digital payment companies in India such as Paytm, MobiKwik and PayU but none provide cross-border payment services. Payoneer gives small business access to about 200 countries including US, UK, Ukraine, China, and Japan, and has local clearing systems in about 100 countries across the world. “Indian business owners have an amazing opportunity in the global e-commerce industry and we make this global market accessible to them,” he adds. The company has two sets of customers – marketplaces and business owners. Payoneer initially carved out its clientele in the marketplace segment and onboarded companies such as Amazon, Wish, Cdiscount, Lazada, Linio, and Shopee. The company caters to about 4 million sellers across the global and about 70% of the them are from emerging markets such as India, Philippines, Indonesia, and Ukraine, among others. It powers about 2 million transactions every month and the B2B orientation of the business allows it to fetch an average ticket size of as high as $2,000.
On the operational front, small sellers continue to deal with challenges in shipping and logistics. To address the same, Payoneer has developed an ecosystem of partners and companies which can provide the required operational support to these small sellers. For logistics support, Payoneer has joined forces with companies such as Alljoy, Gati and SFC. “We will be looking at verticals like shipping, accounting, and marketing services to small businesses to help them grow,” says Galit. In the digital marketing space, Payoneer has partners such as Taboola, HasOffers, ClickBank and Tradedoubler. According to him, small businesses in India are leading the global markets in categories such as textiles, leather goods and jewellery. Earlier this year, it launched a working capital project to help SMEs raise working capital.