Hi, we’re Circula and we're on a mission to simplify how companies manage their expenses. Today, we’re happy to announce the official release of our Android App on the Google Play Store and would like to take this opportunity to take a step back and reflect on this first year.
Why we started Circula
Successful SaaS products (Intercom, Slack, Zoom.us, DocuSign to name a few) have won in their space by simplifying workflows and unburdening their users from time-wasting tasks. Time has become one of the most valuable assets, or as Gary Vaynerchuk puts it:
„The number one asset to everybody in the world is time.“
Gary Vaynerchuk, Entrepreneur & Investor
The most recent wave of B2B SaaS solutions is trying to do the same by identifying inefficiencies at work and delivering a compelling solution to address them.
At the end of last year, we looked for processes at work that a) were time-consuming and fundamentally broken and that b) we felt could be significantly improved with technology. After evaluating it alongside a few other promising ones, the topic of expense management clearly stood out as an important and unsolved pain point for many businesses.
Expense management is a pain for every business we talked to
Having been business travelers ourselves, it shocked us to see how even modern businesses were dealing with their business expenses. In Germany alone, there are around 11m employees traveling on behalf of their employer regularly, resulting in around € 50bn in business travel expenses and you guessed it… a lot of receipts, paid out per diems and headaches.
Even more astonishing was finding out that roughly 70% of the SMBs in Central Europe are still using paper forms and spreadsheets to deal with their expenses. Every time we asked companies about their current process, the same feedback came over and over: they tried multiple solutions but did not find one that would solve their problem entirely.
So we started off with the goal to build a truly user-friendly expense management solution with two overarching principles:
- Simplicity, that is achieved with a focus on product design, automation and third party integrations
- Product localization, by tailoring our solution to the local regulation and market dynamics, enabling a fully compliant paperless process.
September: we launch our beta with our first customers in Germany 🚀
„You can only iterate on something after it’s been released.“
Jason Fried, CEO Basecamp
After building our MVP since the beginning of the year, we launched our product in beta phase with the first companies in Germany. We’ve received invaluable feedback from them, which helped us better identify how to further improve our product, validate our value proposition and learn more about our users’ behaviors and needs. Having built the foundation over 2017, we are now ready to dive into our real goal: making expenses invisible. And this is what we are:
For (German) SMBs, Circula provides a truly digital expense management with a paperless experience built on automation and local tax-law compliance.
Off to an exciting (ad)venture
We were lucky to assemble a diverse team of engineers, product experts, business developers as well as entrepreneurial investors and are thrilled about what’s coming next in (early) 2018.
From the launch of our first very promising partnerships — soon to be announced — to the start of our operations in Germany and the next set of features we will release based on the feedback we received, we will share all these updates with you here :).
Nikolai from Circula