February 21, 2024


just after one A year ago, the spend management decacorn Brex declared it was “Not well suited to the needs of small clientsThe announcement sent shockwaves through the startup world.

although breaks Quickly clarified that smaller customers meant SMBs and unfunded startups, a move that still feels like a stunning reversal considering the company started out as a credit card company for startups.The announcement was made at the Brex Enter the field of software vigorously” And it has put more emphasis on moving upmarket to serve larger enterprise customers.

But then in March, Silicon Valley Bank imploding.

Brex is one of the bidders The bank is known for providing a range of financial services to the start-up community, with its early stage and growth portfolios. Eventually, First Citizens Bank took over, but some of those former clients abandoned the idea of ​​working with such a large bank, opting instead to move their accounts to fintechs like Brex, Mercury and Arc. While Brex declined to provide specifics on how many former SVB customers migrated their accounts in total, it did say, In the first week after SVB closed alone, 4,000 new accounts were opened and $2 billion in deposits were received.

The influx of new clients caused Brex to rethink its priorities and strategy.

Today, the company revealed exclusively to TechCrunch that it has named former Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) operating partner Jason Mok, a Silicon Valley Bank veteran of more than 16 years, as its new startup head. After Mork assumed his new role in April, Will help founders navigate today’s macroeconomic environment and the recent banking crisis, as well as the prospect of generating exciting technologies such as artificial intelligence.

Brex co-founder and co-CEO Henrique Dubugras told TechCrunch via email “Founders and startups have always been at the heart of Brex.”

He added: “Given the broader macro and the debacle of SVB, the community needs our support more than ever. When it comes to hiring someone to lead our startup organization, find someone as proud and committed as Brex Someone with a passion for a startup is critical; Jason fits the bill.”

At a16z, Mok manages the company’s seed funding. At SVB, he served as Managing Director and Head of the Consumer Internet Division. Interestingly, Mo’s father also worked at SVB in the early 1990s in a similar position to Mo’s.

“So I grew up around SVB,” Mo recalls. “I grew up with Silicon Valley banks, founders and entrepreneurs, scaling with companies and VCs.”

During his time at the organization, Mork said he worked on everything from early stage to growth, venture capital, warehouse facilities to lending.

“I learned a lot. SVB is the best place to get an ‘MBA’ in technology, finance, start-ups and venture capital related fields,” he said.

In 2020, Mok was hired by a16z as an operating partner, responsible for overseeing the company’s development and then overseeing the company’s operations Seed Funding Strategy. He said he left the company in September 2022 to focus on his family before being recruited by Brex this spring to help lead the company’s renewed focus on startups.

Mo admitted he was “heartbroken” by what happened to SVB, and said he was drawn to the opportunity to help the startup community in his new capacity.

“SVB is a staunch supporter, enabling the current technology and innovation ecosystem. It’s been amazing to see so many different people and companies come to the fore and really do their part to help shore up the innovation system,” Mo said. “

Image Source: Morrison/Brex

In his new role, Mocker said he would help guide post-Brex opportunities for SVB and how the firm “thinks about serving start-ups of the future”.

“Brex is the only non-bank alternative that offers the full financial stack, including banking, bill payment and credit cards,” he told TechCrunch. “I joined to add some additional leadership strategies and to reaffirm Brex’s commitment to startups. Over time we have expanded to provide services to enterprises, but startups and founders are at the core of what we do and we hope Making sure we continue to iterate, evolve and grow as founders scale beyond startups.”

Part of that will include talking to founders about their product needs so they can “scale faster and iterate better,” Mo said.

The company also hopes to provide more hands-on action by hosting events for the start-up community in multiple cities, including San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles, and by providing more “Brex Ambassadors” who will serve as the face of the founders’ brand, operators and Venture capitalists can turn to fellow founders for advice, perspective, and connections.

“I will oversee all of this, as well as our listing function,” Mo said.

He will also help further build out Brex’s business account and “further refine and improve” the company’s onboarding process.

Brex said it also appointed Nadav Lidor as head of the firm’s banking product for start-ups. Lidor, head of Brex’s Israel office, will focus on Brex Business Accounts – FDIC-insured cash management accounts with partner banks and a suite of funds movement tools across ACH, wire transfers and checks.

late may, Brex said two of its products — spend management platform Empower and Brex Business Accounts — have “$100M ARR each,” or annual recurring revenue.

Since launching Empower last year, Brex has signed up companies including Coinbase, Indeed, SeatGeek, Lemonade and DoorDash, the company added. The company also said its business accounts, described as cash management accounts, feature a suite of funds movement tools across ACH, wire transfers, and checks that “grow rapidly due to ease of use and up to $6 million in FDIC insurance coverage.” “

Brex also recently announced go global.

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