Today we want to introduce Series, an enterprise operating system (EOS) that centralizes and automates businesses’ entire finance & operations stacks. Companies that use Series assemble their own, purpose-built ERP alternative by bundling a la carte solutions and integrating with existing providers. By using Series, businesses get streamlined payments operations, b2b payments, payroll and HR, treasury management, data and document management, contract lifecycle management, accounting software, and more. Taking on Oracle’s Netsuite and the 70+ year incumbent industry, Series already has hundreds of customers and is saving them millions and even tens of millions of dollars managing their backoffices.
We are also announcing that Series has raised $25M, across seed and Series A rounds led by 776 and Basis Set Ventures with participation from Scribble Ventures, HOF Capital, Fin Capital, Form Capital, Leadout Capital, Buckley Ventures, Republic Capital, WndrCo, Operator Collective, PearVC, Kleiner Perkins, Animal Capital, Day One Ventures, Hustle Fund, Caffeinated Capital, Wischoff Ventures, Portal Ventures and angels including Packy McCormick, Jason Warner, Li Jin, Karim Atiyeh, Josh Browder, Lowe Family Office, Terrence Rohan, Jeremy Cai, Mario Gabriele, Charley Ma, Natalie Luu, Annelies Gamble, Chris Andrew, Nick Abouzeid, Vivek Sodera, Sohail Prasad, Kun Gao, Ram Parameswaran, Spencer Farrar, Henry Ault, and many more.
The finance and operations landscape for businesses is extremely fragmented. At Series, we’re building a comprehensive suite of software/SaaS products for businesses to manage and automate their finance and operations and ultimately save money and time by centralizing their back office stack. We call this an Enterprise Operating System or EOS because we believe that this is what an ERP would look like if it was built in 2023.
Enterprise Finance & Operations is Extremely Fragmented
At Series, we service businesses of all sizes from early stage tech startups/SMBs to asset managers to enterprises, though we try our best to support customers as their businesses and back offices grow in complexity. As organizations scale (more teams/organizations, more entities, more functions, more vendors, etc.), their needs for centralization and reconciliation also increases (data, access/permission/roles management, accounting, etc.). This expansion brings exponential complexity of finance and operations work—an average company talks to multiple providers across each of their finance and operation stacks, with extremely fragmented relationships across payments, payroll / HR, billing, treasury, contracts, and more.
Beyond the obvious challenges like costs and point sprawl, the result is an upsurge in manual reconciliation of data, which takes time, effort and costs away from the core of the business.
We are building Series for whatever scale our customers’ finance & operations teams will have to manage, since that's where they see complexity and fragmentation in vendors/functions and the need for reconciliation really balloon.
We believe that customers don’t like to yell at 12 different pricing teams or customer support teams or pay 12 different vendors so we bring everything they need to automate their back office all in one place.
ERPs Are Meant to Centralize Operations for Enterprises
Because of this large fragmentation in operations that businesses experience, ERP software was invented to unify business processes, centralize data and streamline operations across an organization. ERP is a 70+ year legacy industry and it’s a massive market that's going to reach $123B by 2030. However, ERPs are extremely outdated. Implementations and maintenance are complex and extremely costly—they can take 18 months, about 75% of ERP rollouts fail, and 90% of companies use consultants or a dedicated sales team, which can cost millions and tens of millions of dollars and sometimes even hundreds of millions, depending on company size.
We see ourselves as taking on Oracle’s Netsuite and legacy ERP systems. These are designed as massive platforms that take 6-12 months and dedicated sales teams & consultants to transition and integrate into your system. They’re bloated, slow, and operate the same as they did 20+ years ago. They do not meet the needs of modern businesses.
Each one of Series’ product lines is part of its individually massive market and competes with many other companies and already established incumbents. But if we’re talking about it from a platform perspective, the most direct comparison are the legacy ERP platforms.
Reconciliation (and Automation) Matters A Lot
We talk a lot about how Series provides a full suite of products to centralize customers’ finance and ops stack, but the part that still takes the majority of businesses’ time is reconciliation, or accurately counting where everything is and how everything moves, especially in real-time (which it currently is not). That is the largest pain that most businesses experience; it takes and costs a lot of time and money and still happens manually right now — and this is largely attributed to the fact that all of a business’s functions are so fragmented (having X different vendors for banking, Y different vendors for revenue operations, Z different vendors for payroll, etc.).
The main reason why ERP software exists is for the purpose of reconciliation where customers centralize their activity into a third-party system, but that exists because customers’ vendors/functions don’t talk to each other. That brings us back to all of the work that Series is trying to do which is how do we allow all of these separate functions to *actually* talk to each other. We are working hard to offer as many products & services to our customers as much as possible, but by having each product share the same underlying data, we are hoping to make it so that these historically fragmented functions don’t just “talk” to each other, but “work” with each other so teams and people can do higher leveraged work.
We want to automate all of these functions as “background” processes for customers, and we believe that the first step is to make sure that Series has all of the end-to-end functionality across all of the different products customers are used to (like data & document storage, contract management, payments ops, payroll, etc.). Then we can focus on creating intelligent workflows between these different products, and allow them to work together silently in the background for customers to be able to actually provide a very intelligent experience for customers.
This is what we want to do so that customers can spend less time managing reconciliation manually across all of their operations — and at scale, truly automate all of their operations in the background. We believe that software should be built so people can do what they actually want to do (and in most cases, that involves staring at a screen as little as possible)!
“Money” Has Been Very Stressful the Past Few Years
Saving time and money has always been a timeless value proposition but it has never been more prescient in a world where so much has happened in the last few years, especially the stress placed on the greater financial ecosystem, ranging from a global pandemic to rapidly fluctuating interest rates to even a global banking crisis.
You’re seeing this reflected a lot in even how behaviors are changing, for example:
Customers have increased their speculation in individual financial institutions more than before and have started adopting “hedging” practices earlier that large enterprises have had leading to more complex payments operations (including asking for unlimited FDIC insurance, putting more balance sheets in treasuries, etc.).
Economic dynamics are forcing companies to build scrappier and leaner
“Money” and “business” are much more “global” now. The pandemic has spurred much more global economic activity including the proliferation of remote work and international hiring.
The acceleration of AI is changing how businesses and products are run, starting with the increasing hyper commoditization of software.
In general, the economic ecosystem in the US and in the world is rapidly changing and responding to the stresses of the past years, and we’re going to continue to witness quite a bit of change in the near future. All of this requires people and businesses to have systems that are both comprehensive and flexible to adapt.
Introducing Series: The Enterprise Operating System (EOS)
In a new normal where businesses care about saving money and value time more than ever, Series is a more consolidated, streamlined and efficient alternative to the traditional ERP system.
Series is building a comprehensive suite of software/SaaS products for businesses to manage and automate their finance and operations and ultimately save money and time by centralizing their back office stack. Designed as an open ecosystem, Series meets businesses where they are, enabling customers to purchase products a la carte to piece together their own ERP and integrate with providers where they have existing relationships.
Depending on a company’s stage, a customer might require a specific solution, such as simplifying a payables process, while another need, like transitioning to a new payroll provider, might not be relevant at that moment. We’ve designed Series products in a modular and interoperable fashion, like a menu of separate web apps and products, allowing customers to build their solutions as needed. And as a customer adopts more products, the benefits compound and they can stitch together their own "ERP" and "back office" from scratch needing fewer external tools to use for reconciliation. Another big thing we’re trying to be intentional about is that we are building Series to be an "open" ecosystem, to double down on the flexibility and "meeting customers where they are" aspect. Customers can bring their own favorite vendors or financial institutions and plug them into Series and that's completely fine and Series still acts as a centralized system of record for customers. We're committed to meeting customers at their current stage.
All of Series’ products use the same underlying data: they’re automatically synced in real time and will grow with businesses through their entire lifecycle. No more manual reconciliation, exporting data, remembering bank accounts/logins/permission management for multiple providers.
From authentication, notifications, transactions, and events, we are trying to build as much seamless communication between each Series product as possible. The system of record provides centralized access/permissions, retaining how a business works and which people and entities have what kind of access to which products. For instance, a business may start their relationship with Series with Series Cash and later decide to integrate Series Billing. In this case, the transition is smooth, as bank accounts, logins, and permission settings are automatically available within Series Billing, so a company doesn't need to manually import data.
We aim to reduce manual data entry and reconciliation for customers which can be time-consuming and prone to error. Our platform automates these processes to maintain up-to-date ledgers and diminish onboarding costs as businesses adopt more of the Series product ecosystem. Customers can easily access real-data from prior product usage seamlessly into these new additions, capitalizing on the power of the overall system. To achieve comprehensive customer automation, our philosophy centers on owning as much of the end-to-end functionality as possible, thus ensuring a more holistic and automated solution.
ERPs existed back in the day because software wasn’t that “smart” yet, which required a lot of third party, intermediary software to perform functions like label transactions, manage constant data import / exports for bookkeeping, and centralize and reconcile across many complex processes and systems, and more importantly to handle to scale of it. Customers can use our products separately and independently depending on their needs. They can integrate with their own providers instead of being forced to overhaul their systems. Since our products ultimately all talk to each other, customers build their own ERP without knowing it! So, imagine if you had a unified repository to store your money, like bank accounts or brokerage accounts. Then you can move all the ways you stored your money, such as payroll, b2b payments, short term credit, etc. After that, you can count all the ways you moved and stored that money, like bookkeeping, FP&A, etc. Integrating with Series can replace the need for an entire employee or even a team. We give you one place to store, move, count, and make money.
If you’re a business starting from scratch, you should be able to build your back office from 0 to 1 with Series.
If you’re a very large established customer/enterprise, you should be able to replace a la carte different functions at your own pace with Series.
In either case, over time businesses hopefully can use Series as their central operating system and ERP alternative the more they stitch together.
Integrating with Series saves businesses millions and even tens of millions of dollars and even hundreds of millions for implementation and maintenance.
Series can replace the need to entire a whole employee or even a team. We help businesses consolidate their back office stack and keep headcount lower.
For Series products specifically, businesses can save up to 30% on their entire finance & operations stack by buying bundled products.
The magic of Series is the holistic suite — the more products that a customer uses, the less time they have to spend using each product and can actually focus on the core of their business. Less logging into multiple providers, less reconciliation, all of your services talk to one another, you can adopt any product at any time whenever you’re ready. You ultimately save time because this system will have the most complete picture of the customer.
We ultimately want to provide much more than the “basics” of back office software for our customers. At scale, we want to offer everything a business might need, and we want to do as much for the customer as we can, as soon as we can.
We Believe All Of Software Will Commoditize and Compress to Zero
The long-term vision for Series is to automate every single non-unique operation for people and businesses. Series becomes at most an invisible background process, and allows people and businesses to focus on the actually strategically interesting things they care about.
So the questions we think on a daily basis are:
How do we offer everything a person or business needs to do what they want - everything from legal to sales and even basic productivity software.?
How do we actually automate the entirety of how businesses run, starting with making it so that historically fragmented functions actually “talk” and “work” together?
The more businesses grow, the more money, vendors, and processes customers have to manage — and everything becomes fragmented, slow, and opaque at scale. We want to consolidate and automate everything so ultimately customers save time and money.
We think that it’s not insane to believe that within the next 10 years, there will be a set of companies that will be able to automate and make “invisible” all of the pieces that allow any business to run or “breathe’ with the basics. We believe that software, especially business software, is quickly becoming commoditized and that everything will compress to “zero.” Software is getting easier to build, and every major function/sector/category is about to be hyper-saturated. Especially with the acceleration that AI is currently and will provide, there’s a world in which we view software products like a commodity in the next decade, and whoever provides “payroll” or “CRM” software won’t even be unique anymore and are just invisible background processes that require no people. Hopefully we’re getting to a world in which everything that is non-unique to a company is just invisible. In other words, “how do you make it so that people can do what they only do, and only that?”
We believe that this is what an “operating system for businesses” should do, and we call our approach an EOS. Hopefully we can provide this for our customers one day, as well as saving them a lot of money and time along the way.
We Are Working Hard To Build an Enterprise Operating System
It’s a pretty tall order for a team to build a large suite of products, and an even taller order to be able to build an operating system for businesses. There will be a lot to reveal over the coming weeks and months about Series, and we look forward to being able to service more customers soon. But for now — all we want to say is that we are grateful to all of our customers and supporters, and we are working hard to service businesses and teams as comprehensively as we can.
If you’re interested in automating everything for businesses and building an EOS, join us!
If you’re a business, we’d love your help to build out the best possible software for you and save you time and money.
We are (very) far from completing our mission, but we will try our best to serve our customers in as many ways as possible so they can focus on what they want to do the most (and hopefully save money along the way)!
Ready to transform the way you manage finances and operations?
Say goodbye to endless point solutions and service providers — join leading finance and operations teams across different industries and stages globally already growing with Series and gain control in a single system of record.
Series is a financial technology company and not a bank.
Commercial checking accounts are provided by Lewis & Clark Bank, Member FDIC.
Advisory services offered through All Blue Labs Management, LLC, an SEC-registered investment advisor. Subadvisory services are offered through Atomic Invest LLC (“Atomic Invest”), an SEC-registered investment advisor, member SIPC. Atomic Invest was formerly known as Helium Advisors LLC. Brokerage services provided by BNY Mellon Pershing, member SIPC, through a clearing and custody relationship with Atomic Invest. All Blue Labs Management, LLC has a subadvisory relationship with Atomic Invest to manage and execute investments on behalf of its customers. Technology services may be provided by Atomicvest.