Ramp CEO says the fintech startup is just scratching the surface

Fintech exploded over the last five years. Startups in the category raised more than $350 billion in VC funding from 2019 through 2023, according to data from CB Insights. Despite all that growth, Eric Glyman, the co-founder and CEO of Ramp, thinks that the industry, and companies like his, are just scratching the surface.

Glyman recently said on the TechCrunch Found podcast that despite how much his unicorn corporate card and expense startup has grown so far, it’s only tapped in to 1% of its potential market share.

“As quickly as we’ve grown, in our largest market of cards, we still have 99% plus of the market to go,” Glyman said. “So some of this is actually just, we want to bring the magic to more companies [so that] expenses can be effortless accounting, you know, can be radically simpler.”

Despite the fintech category’s rapid growth over the past few years, Glyman started building his first fintech startup before the hype cycle. Glyman and his current co-founder Karim Atiyeh launched their first fintech startup, Paribus, back in 2014. The startup used AI to craft emails for its users to send to stores to get a price change if an item they recently bought went on sale. The company raised a mere $2 million before getting snapped up by Capital One.

The times have changed for fintechs and Glyman talked about what it has been like building and fundraising for a fintech startup as the market has shifted over the past decade.

Glyman also spoke about the changes in AI technology. When the team was building Paribus, the generative AI technology to craft the emails was still relatively rudimentary and the rest of the company’s AI technology was built on very simple language models. For Ramp, the AI tech stack looks very different.

“It’s really profound, I would say. I think a decade ago, you would use it in hyper-targeted use cases. Today, I don’t think there’s a part of Ramp that isn’t affected in some way by AI, and I think it’s gonna keep accelerating,” Glyman said.

Glyman also spoke about how Ramp thinks about scaling and how the company approaches expanding into new categories. The CEO said the company is looking to fill the cracks and gaps that still exist for its customers in their expense workflow as well as the new ones that continue to emerge. The company still has a long road ahead.

“If we do it right, we think and hope that work will feel purposeful, never tedious, monotonous, but strategic, insightful and actionable to focus on the high leverage and creative stuff,” Glyman said. “So that’s what we’re trying to work on. And it’s been a lot of fun getting there.”

Ramp was founded in 2019 and is based in New York. The startup has raised more than $1.7 billion from venture capitalists and was last valued at $5.8 billion in August 2023.

Article was updated to reflect that $350 billion has been invested into fintech startups, not $350 million. 

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