Pilot Raises $60M Series C to Modernize the Back Office

Partnering with Sequoia and having raised $120M in total funding enables Pilot to offer expanded “big-company superpowers” for SMBs

Pilot Co-Founders met at MIT Computer Club and have worked together for over 10 years on three successful startups. Left to right: Jessica McKellar, Waseem Daher, Jeff Arnold (Photo: Business Wire)

SAN FRANCISCO--()--Pilot, the largest provider of back office services for startups and small businesses in the US, announced today that it has closed a $60 million Series C led by Sequoia Capital, doubling its total funding to $120 million including investments from Index Ventures and Stripe. The additional raise enables Pilot to expand its breadth of back office services that remove distractions and help companies focus on success in a challenging business environment.

“Back office operations like bookkeeping can be painful, expensive and time-consuming, especially for small businesses,” said Pat Grady, partner at Sequoia. “Pilot combines intelligent software with a concierge approach to deliver a painless and even delightful back office experience. Pilot is doing for the back office what AWS did for computing – making it easy, scalable, and on demand."

The funding announcement comes as Pilot builds increasing momentum in its mission to bring big-company finance superpowers to SMBs. Pilot has spent the last year focused on empowering SMBs to overcome traditional challenges by providing access to new capabilities previously only available to enterprises with large finance teams. With Pilot, SMBs are able to:

  • Maximize financial outcomes and growth. SMBs typically don’t have access to a seasoned CFO and a team of financial analysts to drive critical financial decisions. Pilot CFO Services fills the void and builds financial strategies and plans that accelerate growth, increase cash flow, and improve profitability - from customer growth planning to sales efficiency optimization.
  • Track and control spending. Controllers at large enterprises analyze and report on spending patterns, but most SMBs lack this function. Pilot provides monthly variance analysis for all its bookkeeping customers, ultimately empowering SMBs to make better budgeting and spending decisions.
  • Access small business tax credits. Many companies miss out on special federal and state tax credits available specifically to small businesses, including a R&D payroll credit of up to $250,000. Pilot has helped small businesses identify and obtain millions of dollars of additional tax credits towards hiring and expansion.

In 2020 Pilot has booked more than $3 billion in bookkeeping transactions for its customers, which range from pre-revenue startups to established companies generating more than $30M of revenue a year.

Started by three-time co-founders Waseem Daher, Jeff Arnold, and Jessica McKellar, Pilot was created to solve problems they’d faced themselves while building their two previous companies.

“Our first job out of college was owning a business in Boston. After a long week of sales, customer support and product development, I would be left with a pile of manual, tedious accounting work to do. We founded Pilot to be the solution we wanted for our business,” said Waseem Daher, co-founder and CEO of Pilot. “Through our partnership with Sequoia,” he added, “we will be able to make the solution of a better back office a reality for more companies than ever.”

“The Pilot team has been our partner from our earliest days, from before we had revenue to post-series D,” said one client that has raised more than $75 million in funding. “They’ve helped us scale, and allowed us to focus on our business instead of spending time worrying about our books.”

About Pilot

Pilot launched in 2017 to bring the back office into the modern era. The company provides small businesses with dedicated finance experts—which Pilot hires as full-time, U.S.-based employees—who learn the ins-and-outs of their business. Pilot integrates directly with the billing, banking, expense and payroll systems customers already use. With a special blend of custom software and expert bookkeepers, Pilot delivers accurate, consistent bookkeeping that gives entrepreneurs the freedom to focus on their business, as well as an array of additional financial services.

Pilot was founded by Waseem Daher, CEO; Jeff Arnold, COO; and Jessica McKellar, CTO. It is their third startup, after two successful exits. Pilot has over 1,000 customers and has raised about $120 million to date. Investors include Sequoia Capital, Index Ventures, Stripe and many world-class entrepreneurs, including Patrick and John Collison, Drew Houston, Diane Greene, Frederic Kerrest, Hans Robertson, Adam D’Angelo, Paul English, Howard Lerman, Joshua Reeves and Tien Tzuo.

Learn more at https://pilot.com/


Lisa Tarter

Release Summary

Pilot Raises $60M Series C to Modernize the Back Office.


Lisa Tarter