ProsperOps BizOps: Banking and credit for startupsbizops
Chris Cochran, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Our blog is primarily a vehicle to speak about cloud cost optimization, but occasionally we'll diverge into our experience as a startup. Your mileage may vary, but here is our experience. Also, we aren't compensated for any endorsement.
It was a few days after we decided to raise capital for ProsperOps that we started evaluating banking and credit card options. Our co-founder, Chris Kuehl, did a quick comparison of different checking and savings programs and we ended up going with Chase. The thing that really stood out from our experience was how flexible Chase was in allowing us to get started when one of our co-founders was in a different city. Chase did not have an end-to-end online option to open a business account, however they allowed two of our three co-founders to be present when the account was opened and made it very easy for our third co-founder to go to a nearby branch and complete the process. The Chase staff were very knowledgeable about the process and clear about the steps we needed to take before arriving at the branch. It saved us a ton of time. As a side note, we dropped into the branch of another major bank and were told we couldn't actually open a business account in the branch, although we could get a latte. Lastly, the Chase mobile app has been very good for mobile check deposit and receiving alerts regarding our transactions.
For our corporate credit card, we started with the Capital One Spark Business card, but almost immediately changed to Brex, a YC startup we learned about through HackerNews. Brex runs as a charge card that direct debits our bank account once a month for the full balance. There were no personal guarantees for the card because it integrates directly with our bank account. There were also several ancillary benefits that made Brex a good fit for us, as well:
- They have a comparable rewards program to the Spark card for many of our spend categories (2% for recurring software, 3% for restaurants, 1% on most other things, etc.)
- The physical Brex card number is different than the virtual card, so you don't need to change card numbers for the loss of a card or online theft
- The console is very clean—you can raise spend limits, turn off cards, etc.
- Brex offers lots of benefits for startups, including discounts with other great products like AWS, Carta, Zoom, Guideline 401k, and Zendesk
- One of the delighters we've subsequently experienced is Brex Travel integrated into their console; we've used it to book travel and its worked like a charm
What's in your... errr... what are you using for your business?