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Bessemer backs SaaS platform that automates billing workflows • TechCrunch

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Zenskar, a startup that is aiming to help SaaS companies automate their billing workflows, has raised $3.5 million in a seed funding round.

Headquartered in New York and Bengaluru, Zenskar is building a platform for SaaS companies to generate bills for their complex pricing plans — whether they are based on usage-based pricing, subscriptions, nuanced discounts, credits, custom currencies, prepaid or ramp deals.

Apurv Bansal, co-founder of Zenskar, said in an interview that 10 to 15% of SaaS companies today have moved toward a consumption-based pricing model on customers’ demand because of macro tailwinds such as product-led growth, automation and AI. Simple subscriptions will only be about 30% of the market, while complex subscription and consumption-based billing will cover the rest in the next decade, he predicted.

The market is flooded with similar SaaS billing platforms, but Bansal said Zenskar allows companies to configure its solution in a no-code, low-code manner, without requiring them to rely on engineers.

“We fundamentally believe that going forward, engineering bandwidth in companies will continue to decline, and software solutions that need to be adopted will need to be adopted by non-technical users,” said Bansal, who formerly worked as a product manager at Google and Indian e-commerce company Snapdeal.

Bansal co-founded Zenskar along with Saurabh Agrawal in March — after surveying more than 120 customers to understand their challenges related to billing. “Generally, tools are built in a linear fashion,” said Agrawal. “We thought about Zenskar like ground up — try to take the best tools from scratch after talking to so many people.”

Bansal and Agrawal are second-time entrepreneurs who sold their previous startups to Snapdeal and music streaming app Gaana, respectively.

Zenskar’s proof of concept is already live with one client, and about 12 customers are on its waitlist, Bansal said. The startup targets the US as its market, though its small engineering team of two people works remotely from India. Bansal said that they plan to open a physical office in Bengaluru.

The seed funding round was led by Bessemer Ventures Partners and saw participation from Shine Capital, Basecamp Fund and Converge.

“We are excited to partner with Zenskar on their journey to fundamentally disrupt the quote-to-cash tooling for SaaS companies. We were impressed with their deep understanding of customer pain points, and their DNA of first principles innovation to provide a radically unique and flexible billing software,” said Anant Vidur Puri, partner, Bessemer Venture Partners, in a prepared statement.

Zenskar plans to use its fund to expand the team of its engineers. It also aims to go beyond SaaS billing and bring solutions to automate accounting, facilitate payments and provide analytics to companies in sectors such as telecom, transportation, IoT and media.

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