Citi Ventures just led a $28 million round for a startup that helps freelancers manage their finances

HoneyBook Co-founders Oz Alon and Naama Alon

  • Citigroup’s investment arm led a $28 million funding
    round in a San Francisco-based software company that helps creative
    freelancers manage their finances. 
  • The investment comes as more US workers are
    participating in the “gig economy,” meaning they’re outside
    contractors who don’t rely on long-term, traditional
    employers. 

The investment arm of Citigroup is backing a software company
that’s aimed at helping freelancers manage their bills and
projects. 

San Francisco-based HoneyBook has just raised $28 million in its
Series C round led by Citi Ventures, with participation from all
existing investors, including Norwest Venture Partners and Aleph.
The company has raised a total of $72 million to-date. 

HoneyBook, co-founded by a married couple, Oz & Naama Alon,
makes a client management software that is geared towards small
businesses in creative industries like photography, web design, and
wedding planning. It utilizes other fintech tools like Stripe to
streamline time-consuming processes from capturing leads and
delivering proposals to processing payments. 

See also:We
spoke with Citi’s innovation chief about which fintechs it wants to
invest in, how its internal ‘Shark Tank’ judges know when to kill
an idea, and why red tape helps some startups flourish

The company, which has surpassed $1 billion in bookings through
its platform, is also exploring a new partnership with Citibank to
serve its members with new financial products, according to
HoneyBook’s CEO Oz Alon. 

“We are in early conversations but would certainly aspire to
later down the road,” he said. “For example, we are looking at
different ways we can offer capital and smoothing the cash flow for
our members. Some of these small businesses don’t get two
paychecks a month. [For] some months they get income, sometimes
they don’t. We would like to work with Citi to smooth out their
cash flows.”

The gig economy, also known as the freelance economy, is
growing.
An Intuit report
found that gig workers represented 36% of the
American workforce in 2016 and that figure will grow to 43% by
2020. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 16.5 million
Americans are working in “contingent” or “alternative work
arrangements.”  

Read more:


Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH:
Everything we know about Samsung’s foldable phone

Source: FS – All – Economy – News
Citi Ventures just led a million round for a startup that helps freelancers manage their finances