Florida fintech firm buys majority stake in Ottawa-based Fusebill

Tyler Eyamie
Tyler Eyamie

Ottawa-based subscription billing platform Fusebill has landed a major investment from an emerging Florida fintech powerhouse as it seeks to make a bigger splash south of the border.

Fattmerchant, an Orlando-based firm that develops payment processing software, announced Thursday it’s acquired a majority stake in the Canadian fintech enterprise. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Founded in 2011, Fusebill has carved out a growing niche with its subscription billing and management platform aimed at small and medium-sized businesses. The firm’s revenues have risen more than 150 per cent over the past three years as more companies move to subscription-based models.

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Fusebill, which secured a $6-million venture capital financing round in 2016, considered going the VC route again as it sought to accelerate its ascent and push harder into the U.S., where 95 per cent of its customers are located. 

But CEO and co-founder Tyler Eyamie said that after scouring the capital markets, he and his team concluded that it might be more effective to join forces with a rising industry leader in the American fintech space.

Fattmerchant fit the bill. 

The seven-year-old firm ranked second on the Orlando Business Journal’s list of central Florida’s fastest-growing companies in 2020, with three-year growth of more than 450 per cent and revenues of US$11 million in 2019. Its sales continued to surge during the pandemic.

“Our space is kind of having a moment, in my opinion,” Eyamie told OBJ on Thursday afternoon. “There’s a lot of competitors receiving ridiculous amounts of capital at ridiculous valuations. We’ve always had that David vs. Goliath, Canada vs. the U.S. type issue where there’s not a ton of venture capital funding flowing into Canada like there is in the U.S.

“Building a company is hard. It takes time and effort, and we think that this path is the absolute best path.”

“Building a company is hard. It takes time and effort, and we think that this path is the absolute best path.”

Tennessee investment firm Greater Sum Ventures, which purchased a majority stake in Fattmerchant late last year, introduced the two companies last summer after sensing the potential upside of a union.

Fattmerchant co-founder and CEO Suneera Madhani said she clicked with her Canadian counterparts from the get-go.

“The first day we met Tyler and his team, we felt like we were two peas in a pod,” said Madhani, whose firm employs about 130 people. 

The new business partners see plenty of synergies between their product offerings. While Fusebill focuses on helping customers manage their billing systems, Fattmerchant’s software enables merchants to process payments across multiple platforms, including on mobile devices.

“To offer our customers a single system of payments and subscription billing … just makes so much sense for us,” Eyamie explained.

Bigger global footprint

Madhani agreed. She said joining forces with Fusebill, which also has customers in the U.K., Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, will help Fattmerchant expand its global footprint as well as its product base.

“Being able to take Fusebill’s software and embed that into our software just makes our software more powerful for our customers,” said Madhani, who fittingly was decked out in a red skirt and white blouse to celebrate her firm’s new cross-border business relationship. 

“This is a really huge milestone for both our companies. I think it’s just a ‘better together’ story.”

Now at 43 employees, Fusebill will remain an independent company headquartered in Ottawa. Eyamie said the two companies are still figuring out exactly how they’re going to integrate their operations.

“The biggest thing for us is just not to boil the ocean,” he said. “We’re building out a very thoughtful and methodical plan to make sure that we’re doing this together.”

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