Boston payments startup Flywire raises $120 million


Last week, Boston-based payments startup Flywire achieved unicorn status following a $120 million Series E funding round. Notably, finance sector titan Goldman Sachs acted as the lead investor. According to Crunchbase, the nine-year-old company is now worth over $1 billion. Moreover, the firm has already taken steps to expand its services and global presence.

What Flywire Does

Founded in 2011, Flywire specializes in offering a software-as-a-sales payments and transactions processing platform.

Thus far, the company has had great success by acquiring clients in the education, healthcare, and travel sectors. At present, prestigious universities like Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology use Flywire to collect tuition payments. The startup also has contracts with hundreds of different hospitals, including four significant providers within the United States. The firm provides financial services for tourists traveling abroad.

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Flywire has attracted high-profile customers because it can move 150 currency types across 200 countries.

To date, the firm has processed more than $12 billion in payments for more than 2,000 clients. Flywire has generated significant revenue doing so. CEO Mike Massaro told Crunchbase his startup had made more than $100 million in fees. He also told the publication that Flywire had experienced an annual revenue growth rate of 40 percent.

As a result, the startup has increased its initial 50 person staff by a factor of 10 in the last five years. The firm’s rise hasn’t gone unnoticed by the broader financial sector. Since its launch nine years ago, the firm has received a total of $263.2 million in outside funding. In addition to Goldman Sachs, Flywire has received investments from Bain Capital Ventures (Vonage) and Accel (Facebook).

Flywire’s Future Plans

In tandem with its funding announcement, Flywire also revealed it bought another company.

The firm just purchased a healthcare industry payment startup called Simplee. Prior to its acquisition, the company had raised $37.8 million and had an estimated value of between $100 million-$500 million. Flywire purchased its rival to expand its capabilities.

Once the transaction is complete, Flywire should be able to increase its market share within the healthcare sector.

Besides, the startup will increase its global footprint in acquiring Simplee. Currently, Flywire has offices in the United States, Asia, and Europe. With its new purchase, the firm will now have a presence in Tel Aviv. Moreover, the firm has plans to use its latest cash injection to expand its operations even further.

In 2019, Flywire established its first office in Latin America. The company plans to use some of its newly secured capital to increase its footprint in that market.

As various tech giants have recently taken an interest in the fintech sector, the industry has become increasingly competitive. Nevertheless, Flywire has all the tools necessary to succeed. Its leadership has smartly chosen to pursue a course of measured expansion within several lucrative fields. Moreover, the firm has secured the backing of the world’s largest financial institutions. As such, the Beantown startup should do very well for itself.


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