The option for buy-now-pay-later services between businesses in the UK is now more widely available as iwocaPay has integrated its B2B payment solution with QuickBooks.
The arrangement, announced last month, sees iwocaPay become the UK’s first B2B BNPL solution for cloud accounting software.
The London-based iwocaPay, whose fintech parent is flexible lending platform iwoca, allows buyers to settle their accounts via pay now or pay later options.
iwoca has made £3.5 billion (about $4.3 billion) of finance available to 90,000 businesses since it was founded in 2011.
The new B2B BNPL arrangement with cloud accounting software giant QuickBooks follows a successful integration that started in February 2021 between iwocaPay and Xero, a New Zealand-based software firm that provides cloud accounting services to small- and medium-sized businesses.
Cloud accounting just one use case for B2B BNPL
“iwoca’s core has always been small businesses, and one of the things that we certainly noticed is, in this payment mechanism, when they use their core products, they often use it to pay a supplier or cover an invoice, so we were kind of fascinated about that, (asking ourselves) ‘Why did that happen?'” iwocaPay co-lead Lara Gilman said when talking about the platform’s genesis in mid-2020.
“We then started looking at what happens in B2B payments … They happen in a lot of places. They can happen online; they can happen offline; they can happen with invoices; they can sometimes happen with cards — there was real reticence about that — so we started playing in that space.”
Over the last 18 months, Gilman and the iwocaPay team honed in on three clear use cases to provide BNPL solutions: E-commerce, managed sales, and cloud accountancy.
“What happens in cloud accountancy is that is the place where you go to manage your business and reconcile transactions,” Gilman said. “It’s also the place where you accept payments because so many businesses rely on invoices to get paid. Now, most invoices don’t offer a digital payment option because these are often high-value invoices, and they don’t want to carry the chargeback risk and the fees that come with cards.
“What we offer, however, is effectively a solution where you can control the pricing and offer built-in payment terms. So you may only offer 30 days, but with iwocaPay, you can offer 90 days. That is a huge value to your buyer and the business.”
Access, reach ‘critical’ to iwocaPay
Millions of small businesses across the UK now have access to iwocaPay’s payment solutions due to its integration with Xero and QuickBooks. Small business owners can add iwocaPay as an invoice payment method to their QuickBooks invoices by signing up to iwocaPay and integrating it from their iwocaPay dashboard.
Gilman said access and reach are “critical” to the platform.
“The reason we’re so excited about QuickBooks and Xero is that it serves that cloud accountancy market that allows people to put a digital checkout onto their invoice with full control over the commercials, be able to offer them longer terms without the chargeback risk, and also reconcile with their management,” she said.
Adding integration with QuickBooks “felt like a really natural step,” Gilman said, as it and Xero offer different services to various businesses.
“It was certainly a no-brainer to some degree around how we thought to be able to access that Cloud account and to provide that service to QuickBooks users and their accountants,” said Gilman, an American who’s been with iwoca for four-and-a-half years.
“The accountant network in the UK is super strong. Accountants are real amplifiers for what their clients do and how quickly they come to speed with new products and services. And so for us, it is a real coup to be associated with such great brands like Xero and QuickBooks, and be part of their ecosystem and therefore kind of be part of these accountants’ ecosystem.”