Payroll Data Connectivity Platform Company Pinwheel Raises $50 Million

By Annie Baker ● Jan 19, 2022
  • Pinwheel recently announced it raised $50 million. These are the details.

Pinwheel recently announced that it raised $50 million in a Series B round led by GGV Capital with continued participation from Coatue, First Round Capital, and Upfront Ventures, and investments from strategic partners including AMEX Ventures, Indeed, Kraken Ventures, Franklin Templeton, etc.

The company’s mission is to help create a fairer financial system by providing an API that makes it easy for businesses to securely connect payroll accounts to their applications with consumer permission. And by establishing this layer of income connectivity, fintechs, financial institutions, and more can develop new tools or services that provide equitable access to financial services for everyone, including the 67% of Americans who are considered to be financially unhealthy.

As income and employment status are the key determining factors in all financial decisions, these pieces of information have not been easily accessible, making it impossible to tailor financial services offerings to a person’s specific financial situation. And Pinwheel’s market-leading data coverage spans nearly 80% of people employed in the United States.

This is the industry’s most comprehensive level of data from traditional forms of income and work via payroll systems for the top 500 employers to a burgeoning ecosystem of less traditional income and work like gig and creator economy platforms. And this breadth of data solves the missing income link, ushering in the next generation of equality-focused fintech innovation.

Pinwheel offers real-time data about a person’s income, and uniquely covers not just scheduled direct deposits for salaried employees but also hourly clock-ins, most accurately showcasing any type of income. And this data can be used to enable offerings like earned wage access (EWA) where a person can receive their money as soon as they’ve earned it, bypassing the waiting period for a paycheck.

With Pinwheel, fintechs and financial institutions are able to more successfully acquire new customers and retain existing ones. And Pinwheel works closely with its customers including Block (formerly Square), Varo, Lendly, and Daylight to pave the way for a fairer financial system.

With this funding round, Pinwheel plans to triple its headcount to 180 people, with a particular emphasis on engineering roles, to continue work on EWA and to expand into new areas like tax preparation. And the company will further its commitment to setting the industry standard for the security of consumer data. Last year, Pinwheel received its SOC2 Type 2 compliance.

KEY QUOTES:

“With this latest round so closely following our Series A, we’re poised to rapidly scale and introduce new solutions that will change finance as we know it. I’m particularly passionate about addressing the vicious cycle of paycheck-to-paycheck-living that plagues almost 80% of people in the United States, by developing products that will power EWA and dynamic lending opportunities. I look forward to a world where people are proactively offered new terms of payment for a personal loan should they lose their job, or earlier access to their paycheck in a time of crisis instead of facing payday loan sharks.”

— Kurtis Lin, co-founder, and CEO of Pinwheel

“Pinwheel’s API unlocks the power of the income layer, driving the next wave of innovation in the fintech ecosystem. Pinwheel has the ability to impact every American that receives a paycheck. Such an immense opportunity, coupled with the company’s mission to build a fairer financial system, uniquely positions Pinwheel to reshape so many people’s financial lives in a positive way. We are proud to partner with them on this journey.”

— Tiffany Luck of GGV Capital