Ben, an employee benefits platform from London that allows employees to choose their benefits and proffers them flexibility, has just closed $16 million in Series A funding. With this, the total funding raised by the company accounts for $21 million.
The investment round was led by Atomico (which backed TestGorilla and Vaayu recently). The round also saw participation from Cherry Ventures, DN Capital and Seedcamp. Further, HR and FinTech founders and angels supporting Ben include Ross Seychell (Chief People Officer, Personio), Phil Chambers and Neil Ryland (Peakon CEO and CRO), and Job van der Voort (Remote CEO and founder) among others. In addition to the investment, Atomico Partner Sasha Vidiborskiy will join Ben’s board.
The HRtech startup will use the fresh funding to accelerate the development of its SaaS and payments technology and expand its global employer customer base. It will also invest in building its team to help achieve the goal of becoming the technology infrastructure for all benefits such as connecting employers, employees, brokers, and benefits providers. The company also told TFN that they’re looking to double the size of the team following this funding round and are hiring across the board to bring Ben to more companies and employees.
“This is the first time in history that four generations coexist in the workforce at the same time. Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials, and Generation Z participate in a complex global economy, and their benefit requirements vary and fluctuate,” said Ben CEO and Co-Founder Sebastian Fallert. “Companies, many of whom are spending around 33% of payroll on benefits, are reassessing their traditional benefits packages to fit more culturally and ethnically diverse teams distributed around the world.”
Commenting on the investment, Atomico’s Partner Sasha Vidiborskiy said, “Ben’s unique platform massively reduces the admin burden on HR and seamlessly delivers benefits that employees really care about. This flexibility is crucial in the current macroeconomic environment, where company performance and productivity is heavily reliant on employee satisfaction and retention.”
Further, sharing his insight on the current tech downturn and whether it will affect the company’s investments, Vidiborskiy shares with TFN, “There is more venture capital money available in Europe than at any point in history, and the quality of European tech companies has never been higher. At Atomico, we are continuing to actively invest across Series A, B and C in Europe, and we’re always happy to meet with amazing founders.”
Flexible employee benefits platform
Ben was founded in London in 2019 by Sebastian Fallert, previously MD UK at Secret Escapes, and David Duckwort, with a background in payments infrastructure in banking – who worked for renowned banks such as HSB.
Ben was born out of the insight that payments infrastructure was the missing piece to making life much easier for people leaders, benefits providers, and employees. The founders told TFN, “We fell in love with the problem and are incredibly proud of our fantastic team and partners who have joined us to build a better way to care for and reward teams.”
As UK MD at travel company Secret Escapes, Sebastian learned the hard way that there was no off-the-shelf platform available to create a great benefits programme, but was rather a manual, time-consuming, and expensive process. In contrast, Ben claims to be the first true all-in-one platform to manage global, flexible employee benefits.
Explaining how it works, the founders add, “Companies move all of their existing benefits (pension, health or life insurance and more) as well as any budgets (health & wellbeing, learning & development, working from home, …) into Ben alongside the rules of who gets what. Employees then get to make choices based on what matters to them – allocating budget and configuring their own insurance coverage, pension, and choosing from hundreds of additional benefits across mental, physical, social, and financial wellbeing even using their own Ben Benefits Mastercard that can turn anything into a benefit.”
Further, the UK-based company’s technology cuts the cumbersome admin for HR managers integrating accounting, HR, and Payroll systems to streamline all onboarding, enrollment, management and offboarding processes.
The per-employee Ben Mastercard and flexible allowance put decision-making in the hands of the employee to choose what suits them best.
Additionally, Ben works with a variety of third party brokers and integrates with HRIS and other systems to allow employers globally to easily start using its software and offer employees bespoke, premium benefit options. It serves over 150 customers worldwide, including some of the world’s fastest growing global businesses such as Zalando, Deliveroo, Funding Circle, Pleo, BitPanda and Remote.