Using blockchain and other network technologies, the former Align Commerce is focusing on payment services for small and mid-sized businesses.

Veem, a provider of online payment services known until today as Align Commerce, is out to make international payments easier for small and mid-size companies. Several investment firms are backing its strategy with $24 million in funding, Veem said today.

We’re obsessed with creating a different payment experience.
Marwan Forzely
CEO, Veem

Too often SMBs don’t receive the level of service they deserve from bank wire networks, says Veem CEO Marwan Forzely, who founded the company as Align Commerce in May 2015.

Marwan Forzely, CEO, Veem

Forzely says Veem will use the funding to expand its payment services and enter new markets beyond the 60 countries where it now operates. It also plans to offer payment services to more sellers as well as buyers.

In about half of the countries where Veem now operates, such as China, it provides payment services only to buyers, enabling them to transmit funds to sellers and manage records of invoices and payment. Now it will begin also offering payment management services in China and other countries to the receivers of funds, enabling Chinese suppliers, for instance, to reconcile payments from each customer to the pertinent invoices. Such services, he adds, are often unavailable to SMBs—a void that Veem is out to fill.

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Forzely says Veem designs its services to operate over a variety of payment networks, and chooses the most efficient and least-costly option available for each payment transaction. The networks can include local payment processing networks, a blockchain internet ledger system, and the Belgium-based international SWIFT financial messaging service. (SWIFT stands for Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication.)

He adds that Veem charges a flat fee of $15 per transaction when payments don’t need to convert from one currency to another. For payments requiring currency conversions, Veem charges the receiver of funds 1.9% of the transaction value, a rate that declines as volumes increase. For example, for a transaction with a value of $25,000, the rate would be 1.5%, resulting in a fee of $375.00.

Forzely points to growth in the demand for payment services coming from small and mid-sized companies that are buying and selling through individual e-commerce sites and online marketplaces. Veem caters mostly to companies with less than $50 million in annual sales and fewer than 50 employees.

The $24 million in Series B funding is from National Australia Bank Ventures, GV, SBI Investment Co., Kleiner Perkins Caulfied Byers, and Silicon Valley Bank. Veem has received about $40 million to date in overall funding.

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