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Blue Dot raises $ 32 million for AI that helps businesses manage their tax accounting – TechCrunch

Artificial intelligence has become a fundamental cornerstone of how many business software works, providing a useful boost to reading, understanding and using the often fragmented data mine that organizations generate these days. -this. In the latest development, an Israeli startup called Blue dot, which uses AI to help businesses manage their tax accounting, announces $ 32 million in funding to continue growing, specifically responding to business demand for tools. more user-friendly to help correctly read and itemize expenses for tax purposes.

“The tax industry is very complicated, and we play in a very large space, but it’s a huge revolution,” Isaac Saft, CEO and co-founder of Blue dot, said in an interview. “Business and corporate accounting just won’t be the same in the future as it is today.”

The financing is led by Ibex Investors in partnership with Lutetia Technology Partners, with former investors Lamaison Partners, Viola and Target Global also contributing. Blue dot renamed last week from its original name, VATBox (part of the funding will be used to help Blue dot penetrate deeper into the US market, where the concept of VAT is not so ubiquitous: it does there is no national sales tax and the states determine the tariffs themselves).

Pitchbook notes that under its old name, the startup last raised funds in 2017, a $ 20 million Series B run by Viola with a post-monetary valuation of $ 120 million.

While Blue Dot is not disclosing a valuation today, it will likely be much higher than that based on some of its commitments. Along with clients like Amazon, tobacco giant BAT and Dell, it also has a partnership with one of the biggest names in expense accounting, SAP Concur, which uses Blue dot to power its expense data entry tool. to automatically read charges and understand how to itemize them so that employees or accountants don’t have to go through the pain themselves.

As Saft describes, part of what propels her company’s activity is the broader trend of consumerization and the role it has played in business services: the world of work has chosen many technological tools, led by the smartphone, to help them. organize their personal lives, and much of what is ‘served’ to them through technology is increasingly personalized with lower barriers to entry, whether in e-commerce sites, entertainment or social media. In the world of work, they can often be frustrated with the amount of work that spending and spending can involve – a process that becomes increasingly complicated as tax regimes become more stringent.

Essentially, Blue dot’s approach is to view the tax accounting process as something that can be improved with AI to make it easier for people to use – whether those people are workers who itemize their expenses or whether they are accounts verify and execute them through even more important accounting processes. With a machine learning system that takes into account both internal compliance and company policies, as well as the broader tax and regulatory framework, Blue dot helps ‘read’ an expense and determine how to report it. , how much tax should be accrued and where, and so on.

This is especially important because the process of entering and managing expenses is transferred to the people spending the money, rather than the dedicated accountants working on their behalf. An awareness of how modern offices work and evolve is one of the reasons investors got interested here.

“We believe Blue dot can change the way organizations around the world handle accounting and its tax implications for their expenses,” Gal Gitter, partner at Ibex, said in a statement. “The market has moved away from the centralization of business functions, including purchasing. As this accelerates, more companies will look for ways to replace expensive and complex manual processes with digital and automated solutions that use data and AI to essentially enable transactions to take place. declare themselves, what Blue dot provides.

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