Further blur the lines between the banking service provider and the accounting service provider.
Image source: Tide.
Tide is offering its accounting products, starting with billing, to non-account holders in an unusual move that will open up its service to customers of competing merchant banks.
While the launch of Tide Open Access is limited to invoicing, the fintech says its expense management, payroll and credit services will soon be available to all SMBs, not just those with a checking account at Tide.
CEO Oliver Prill said that while new businesses are open to choosing a digital banking challenger like Tide, for established businesses such a decision is often difficult, if not impossible.
“We have come to the conclusion that the only physical way to introduce competition for established businesses is to allow them to virtually switch to using the Tide platform without actually changing bank accounts.”
The creation of Tide Open Access is financed by BCR funding from fintech and constitutes one of its public commitments.
Regular surveys show that around 13% of businesses plan to change banks in the next 12 months, while business bank change rates are only around 4%.
Take away food
It’s clear from Tide’s decision that the move will both open its appeal to more SMEs while putting the company in more direct competition with competing enterprise software vendors, from Expensify to Concur.
While Prill is keen to continue positioning Tide’s offering as that of an “enterprise financial platform” – which can be connected to a host of other software vendors, such as Xero and Sage – as the As Tide’s feature set is growing, it is now increasingly competing with these vendors.
Finally, exposing Tide’s services to non-account holders indicates that Tide may shift its business priorities away from the current account ownership of SMBs.