The FinTech Report Podcast – Episode 9: Interview with Ben Pfisterer, Zeller

The FinTech Report Podcast – Episode 9: Interview with Ben Pfisterer, Zeller

“We will take on the Big 4 incumbents with ‘Business Banking in a Box’ and fair and transparent pricing,” says Zeller.

CEO and Co-Founder of Zeller, Ben Pfisterer, raised $81 million in under 12 months, all before having a product on the market, making it Australia’s most valuable pre-launch startup ever.

Just last year, ex-head of APAC at Square, Ben, founded Zeller, an Australian integrated payments and financial services solution. The company recently announced a $50 million fundraise, led by US VC firm Spark Capital, following its initial Series A funding round in March 2021.

Zeller’s product suite (Zeller Terminal, transaction account and MasterCard) launched in May 2021, with early growth of 1,500 Australian businesses signing up in the first month and weekly payment volume growing 200% since launch.

In this episode of The FinTech Report Podcast, Ben discusses what makes Zeller different. According to Ben, Australian business banking is dominated by “the Big 4” and there is no innovation and many restrictive contracts; Zeller will change this, and Ben discusses how: the key points being:

  • The Zeller strategy is based on a core understanding of what a business needs. Ben says there are three things companies all need; need to accept payments, they need to put the money somewhere, and then put the money to work – Ben says Zeller solves all three.
  • Ben calls Zeller “Business Banking in a Box” (businesses get a payments terminal, a cash account, with a Mastercard).
  • Ben notes that Zeller is not an ADI or RADI, but says they will be at some stage.
  • Zeller’s strategy is to take on the banks with great tech and transparent pricing! Zeller offers businesses a startup package at $299 for a payments terminal, with a Mastercard, with no ongoing terminal rental fees, no fixed contract, and 1.4% fee for payments.
  • Zeller can sign up companies in minutes online (KYC, on boarding), and their tech is built to be scalable and reliable.
  • Zeller will move into overdrafts, business lending and other business areas in the future.
  • Ben talks through his fundraising journey, his vision for the company and how the founding team created a culture that was born in a lockdown/pandemic.
  • Ben says Regulators in Australia need to help fintech startups with an ‘unfair advantage’ until they ‘get up on their feet’

You can listen here: