Irish fintech firm Flexiwage plans to expand into the US market after securing a 20-year patent for its self-scheduling payroll platform.
Getting paid monthly can be a pain point for some employees. According to Waterford company Flexiwage, younger workers and those in lower-paid jobs are often the worst affected and can be forced to seek out short-term credit to help them reach pay day.
Flexiwage is hoping to change that. Founded in 2016, the company’s platform acts as a ‘financial checker’ that allows employees to schedule their own wages. It can be integrated into employer payroll systems and potentially reduce admin costs by up to 75pc, the company claims.
So, how does it work? If a worker has all their bills due at the beginning of the month, for example, they can choose to receive 60pc of their wage at that time and 40pc later on, with no impact on how the employer processes payments. Employees can also use it to manage their savings and set financial goals.
Flexiwage CEO Anthony Cronin previously held positions at payroll providers ADP and CoreHR, and was global payroll implementation manager at EY.
Monthly payroll systems became the global norm more than 30 years ago, he said. Since then, “certain cohorts of workers have experienced difficulties with money management”.
“The rise in debt and short-term credit for some workers has vastly increased in line with the introduction of a monthly pay system,” he said. “There’s a simple way to help both employers and employees, which is the basis for setting up Flexiwage and developing our own software in-house.”
By giving people greater control over “how and when they receive their income”, he added, they can ultimately benefit from greater financial wellness and productivity.
Flexiwage has clients in Ireland including Voxpro and Eurofins, but now has set its sights on the US. The firm just secured a 20-year US patent that will allow it to roll out a pilot programme there in early 2021. Cronin said that this process “wasn’t easy”.
“It took four years and there were many challenges, but we knew we needed it because it would allow us to trade with global partners,” he said.
“With the patent now secure, we can press ahead with our expansion plans for 2021. We are already working with investors in Boston and other Irish American investors. The pandemic has slightly delayed our roll-out plans, but we plan to launch our pilot in the US in Q1 2021.”