Buzz, cloud accounting, Conference, credit cards, Daisuke Sasaki, Events, Fintech, fintech in asia, freee, freee card, freee venture capital advisor, Japan, payroll, small and medium enterprises, tech in asia, tech in asia Tokyo, tech in asia tokyo 2017, Venture Capital

Freee and the future of Japan’s fintech boom


Fintech is making waves throughout the tech world and beyond. It’s made its way into the everyday operations of business, the finances of the consumer, and even organs of national government. The growing importance of fintech in Europe and America is equalled in Asian countries, and Japan is no exception.

Fintech is one of the hottest industry verticals in Japan, and Freee is definitively a leader in the market. That’s why we’re happy to announce that Daisuke Sasaki, founder and CEO of Freee will be giving a talk on day one of Tech in Asia Tokyo 2017 this September 27 at Bellesalle Shibuya Garden, Tokyo.

Freee’s astronomical rise since 2012 has led to them scoring nearly US$100 million in funding, most recently with a US$28.6 million series D round just before the start of this year.

If you want to see why Freee is standing out among the competition, hear it first hand at Tech in Asia Tokyo 2017.

What Freee does

Freee is an online accounting and payroll service is mostly targeted at small and medium enterprises. For smaller companies, the costs of doing payroll and accounting can lead to death by a thousand (paper)cuts. The main packages the company offers include accounting for corporations, privately owned companies and human resources departments, as well as software for filing tax returns or filing the paperwork needed to start a company.

Freee’s use of artificial intelligence and a clean user interface lets companies avoid most of the footwork entirely, freeing up valuable time and money. The service’s use of the cloud is another reason it has carved out such a high market share. Integration with banks across Japan makes tax reports effortless, and its high degree of automation means that accountants often simply have to approve bills for transactions to be made.

Where they are now

Left: Freee’s share of the cloud payroll market in Japan.
Right: Freee’s share of the cloud accounting market in Japan.

Not long after release, Daisuke Sasaki had the following to say about his goals with Freee:

“We want one million SMBs to use our product and we aim to create a network of SMBs who can easily make transactions within the freee network. We also want to globalize our product. Right now, freee is only in Japan. But once our product is more stable, we hope to enter other Asia markets, hopefully starting next year.”

With 800,000 businesses using the service, the startup is getting close to meeting its early goal. Today, Digital InFact says Freee’s share of the cloud accounting market in Japan has moved up to 44 percent. The company has clearly made great strides in the past few years. But what are the next steps for fintech in Japan? What improvements in the technology, the system, or the leadership of the industry are needed to take fintech to the next level?

Where Freee (and Japan’s fintech leaders) are headed

To get some ideas of what the movers and shakers in Japanese fintech are envisioning for the future, let’s take a look at some recent developments that further integrate fintech into the business environment.

Last month, Freee announced the freee card, a business credit card that can plug directly into its automated system. Corporations can already apply for the card, with fifty being available per company.

This comes not long after the announcement of Free Venture Capital Advisor. VCs can use the platform to take an in-depth look at investees’ day to day finances, plugging directly into the automated accounting software to probe strengths and weaknesses.

Hear it first at #tiatokyo2017

These are only two of the company’s newest ventures, no doubt with more to come as the fintech environment evolves. If you want to see the direction Freee is taking (with the rest of the Japanese fintech scene likely following in tow), check out Tech in Asia Tokyo 2017 happening this September 27 & 28. We’ve already brought you a sneak peek of Raksul head Yasukane Matsumoto’s fireside session, but there’s far more to see and learn over the course of the conference.

To get all this and more, grab a ticket or two at this link at 10 percent off – only valid till September 8, 2359hrs (GMT +9).

Note: This fireside session will be in Japanese, but translation devices are available.

This post Freee and the future of Japan’s fintech boom appeared first on Tech in Asia.



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