Member Exclusive, SMB Finance

How Relay, a Toronto-based neobank, is gaining ground in the US SMB market

  • What motivated Relay's Canadian founders to target the US market?
  • Co-founder & CEO Yoseph West shares about Relay's US SMB target market, growth strategies, and the challenges associated with serving this segment

Email a Friend

How Relay, a Toronto-based neobank, is gaining ground in the US SMB market

Almost six years ago, Yoseph West and Paul Klicnik [VP of Engineering] founded a Toronto-based fintech startup Relay.

Relay provides an online business banking and money management platform that automates finance functions for SMBs by integrating with their back-office systems. This B2B company serves SMB owners across the US in various sectors, including professional services, retail and e-commerce, non-profits, trades, and real estate.

The US SMB market is highly competitive, with many native players vying to establish their presence within the sector and meet SMBs’ expectations through new offerings. So what motivated Relay’s Canadian founders to target the US market with their fintech venture?

The inspiration to operate in the US

Before founding Relay, co-founder and CEO, Yoseph West gained experience working on platforms for the US market by developing accounting technology at Hubdoc and Wave. Both companies are also based in Toronto and cater to American small businesses.

The decision to establish a company serving the US market was driven by the market size and the opportunities it offers. It’s also better for securing funding.

“Relay has served US SMBs since day one,” West told Tearsheet. “When we founded the business almost six years ago, we witnessed the pace of innovation and strong presence of consumer fintech products like Venmo and PayPal in the US. Less developed was the fintech market serving businesses, specifically SMBs, so we jumped at the opportunity to build a platform that serves American business owners.”

subscription wall for TS Pro

0 comments on “How Relay, a Toronto-based neobank, is gaining ground in the US SMB market”

SMB Finance, The People Starting Things

The magic behind serial entrepreneurship: How Suneera Madhani is translating the learnings from her first fintech to the second

  • Building a fintech isn't a task for the faint of heart, especially given the current climate. But case studies like Suneera Madhani show that it not only gets easier every time you set out to build a fintech from the ground up, it also allows you to work on the ecosystem rather than just a narrow problem set.
  • Madhani's story is an instructive example of how aspiring entrepreneurs can find the right muse, how they should build their networks and what levers they should pull to build successful business models.
Rabab Ahsan | July 16, 2024
Banking, Member Exclusive, SMB Finance

How financial firms are stepping up with new tools, experiences, and guidance to serve SMBs

  • SMBs are keen to invest in AI and boost their digital payment adoption. Concurrently, they expect their financial service providers to focus on these areas.
  • Financial firms are investing in SMB digitization tools and boosting embedded payments strategies, while also exploring diverse and unconventional approaches.
Sara Khairi | May 30, 2024
Payments, SMB Finance

SMBs are increasingly opting for real-time payments, leaving credit cards behind as their preferred choice

  • Healthcare SMBs are increasingly turning to RTP payments for A2A transfers, surpassing credit cards and checks in usage over the past year.
  • As healthcare provider businesses increasingly integrate instant payments, two notable factors stand out that shape the adoption and usage of real-time payment rails across this sector.
Sara Khairi | May 01, 2024
Banking, SMB Finance

U.S. Bank’s Shruti Patel on the future of SMBs and how the bank is positioning itself to align with their needs

  • U.S. Bank's Shruti Patel explains how the firm is adapting its approach to serve the evolving needs of SMBs in the coming months.
  • "I am really excited about several product launches we have planned for this year... they will bring to life our strategy to deliver a fully integrated suite of banking + payments + software solutions for our clients.”
Sara Khairi | April 24, 2024
Banking, SMB Finance

As SMBs veer away from traditional brick-and-mortar branches, what will traditional banks do?

  • Despite the digital banking boom, traditional banks like JPMorgan are charting a different path, planning to open new branches in the coming years.
  • SMBs, on the other hand, are positioning to transition away from traditional brick-and-mortar branches and toward platforms with a stronger digital focus.
Sara Khairi | April 03, 2024
More Articles