GoCardless chooses Melbourne for its first office outside of Western Europe

GoCardless, a global fintech company has chosen Melbourne as its Australian headquarters to manage its customers, partners and talent within the Australian market.

It joins other international companies such as Slack, Square, Transferwise, Stripe and Tradeplus24 and home-grown unicorns such as Airwallex, Afterpay Judo Capital, MYOB and Pexa. Melbourne’s fintech ecosystem continues to grow.

Founded in 2011, GoCardless has created a global bank debit network and online payment platform for businesses to easily track and collect payments from customers with recurring revenue.

Through extensive global expansion, GoCardless has established offices in London, Paris, Munich, San Francisco, New York and Melbourne, with a team of 500 staff that process $20 billion in transactions annually via their 60,000 global business customers - from small business owners to worldwide operators such as TripAdvisor and the Guardian.

GoCardless specialises in recurring payments, using bank debit to facilitate the collection of regular payments such as subscriptions, invoices and instalments. It operates across eight bank debit schemes including BECS and PaymentsNZ. GoCardless is also using open banking to develop new payment features for its customers. GoCardless is backed by some of the world’s foremost investors such as Adams Street Partners, Accel Partners, Bain Capital Ventures, Balderton Capital, GV (formerly Google Ventures), Notion Capital, Passion Capital and Salesforce Ventures

Australia is number one in the world for contactless payments, with two in every three payments at point of sale now contactless and one of the fastest growing markets in the world for fintech adoption rates.  This makes it an ideal market for contactless payments.

Melbourne was seen as the right choice for GoCardless’ first office outside Western Europe as the city possesses a deep pool of talent in the fintech sector and is well-positioned both in Australia and globally.

Melbourne is home to the some of the largest Australian banks, insurance and superannuation funds as well as a cutting edge start up eco-system eager to grow their businesses.

We spoke to  Pranav Sood, VP Small Business at GoCardless,  to find out about their expansion here in Melbourne.

  1. What attracted your company to invest in Melbourne, Victoria?

We wanted to pick somewhere to be the HQ for our Australian operations that would provide us with access to current and prospective customers and partners, as well as a deep pool of talent to build our team. Melbourne has all  these things and also has the additional benefits of being well-connected both within Australia and to the rest of the world.

2. What challenges did you face when you were exploring/entering/expanding into Victoria?

Our office in Melbourne was our first outside of Western Europe, which brought with it all the challenges you'd expect. It took time to find the right tools and processes to enable effective global collaboration and make sure the team on the ground in Melbourne had the right level of support. On a more prosaic level, there were some logistical challenges to cross, including questions relating to licensing, visas, HR, office space and others.

3. How did working with Invest Victoria help with your investment journey?

Invest Victoria helped us to meet other businesses that have successfully grown in Australia and gave us opportunities to share our experiences.

4. What advice do you have for other global businesses looking to invest in Victoria to improve their chance of success?

Be clear about what you need to see to increase your investment in the market but be flexible to adjust to the situation as it evolves. International expansion never goes exactly to plan! Where possible, consider temporarily relocating staff from an established location to your Australian office - this helped us to ensure the team on the ground understood the culture of the company, and our product, from the get-go.

Find another case study

Learn more about fintech opportunities

Ride the wave of fintech in Melbourne