A Quick Look at Torpago CEO Brent Jackson’s Appearance on the Leaders in Payments Podcast
Following up on his recent appearance on the PayPod Podcast, our CEO, Brent Jackson, joined the Leaders in Payments Podcast and host Greg Myers to speak about Torpago and our product, broader trends in fintech and financial services, and share some details about personal background and what inspired him to become a founder.
Quick Overview of Torpago
After a brief introduction, Greg asked Brent for an overview of Torpago and what we offer.
Brent provided an outline of our corporate credit card and spend management platform and introduced PoweredBy, PoweredBy, our white label solution that enables banks to launch their own credit card program. He then shared that since launching in 2020, we’ve already grown to serve over 1,400 SMB customers.
Brent also mentioned that he’s proud of the configurability of the product, with it being easy for features can be turned on or off to suit client needs – serving a small local business as easily as a large company. Some industries Brent highlighted where Torpago has been successful were construction, manufacturing, and e-commerce.
He then talked about how companies start looking for solutions like Torago when they grow to roughly 20 employees and start having to do more employee transactions or reimbursements. Brent noted that most customers giving all employees cards, with our spend management tools making business owners feel comfortable that the cards will be used appropriately.
What Makes Torpago Stand Out
When asked how Torpago stands out, Brent compared two separate groups of competitors.
The first group he identified are legacy solutions, including Amex and Concur, which require businesses to use several tools for their business finance needs. One tool for their business credit card provider, one tool for expense management, perhaps a third for reimbursements. Torpago combines all of these tools in one platform, simplifying operations and reducing customer costs.
The second group identified by Brent was fintechs that offer a similar product as Torpago. Brent highlighted the benefits of PoweredBy, which allows banks to use Torpago as the backend infrastructure for functions such as card issuing, payment processing, software applications, integrations, fraud controls, risk management, and more. This allows them to offer a sticky and competitive product.
Brent highlighted that our focus with PoweredBy is on credit unions and community banks with lesson $50 billion in assets; it is appealing even for regional and large banks that need similar solutions.
Where the Fintech and the Payments Industries are Heading
As he mentioned in his appearance on PayPod, Brent sees lots of consolidation in the fintech and payments industries in the short-term due to choppiness in the market and ongoing economic uncertainty.
He believes that bigger, well-capitalized companies will begin acquiring smaller companies, especially venture-backed companies that are struggling to raise capital.
Long-term, Brent expected innovation to continue with an emphasis on embedded payments or financial services, with the number of companies not seen as payments providers or fintechs rolling out financial solutions increasing over time. Brent cites several factors behind this development:
- Many software companies have scale and good user bases, and are looking for ways to to serve those customers better
- It has become easy to add financial functions like payments to software products
- The data financial products make them really appealing to data-driven companies
Journey to Becoming a Founder
To close out the show, Greg asked Brent to share some personal details about himself and how he became a founder.
Brent shared that he started his career at Deloitte in San Francisco as a consultant in the corporate tax group, which he found a great place to begin his career, though he eventually decided he didn’t want to become a partner and do consulting long-term.
He left Deloitte for Accrualify, a now-acquired startup in the payments space that was building a mid-market accounts-payable/vendor management solution competing with Bill.com and Coupa. At Accrualify, Brent worked with many small businesses, and after speaking with them about their challenges, he was inspired to start Torpago with a mission to simplify spending for small businesses.
That fits Brent’s professional passion for building products that help customers solve pain points. At his core, Brent considers himself a product founder that loves interacting with customers and hearing their struggles and what makes their jobs difficult – and building products that help them solve their problems.
You can listen to the episode below, on the Leaders in Payments website, or on all major podcast platforms, including Spotify and Apple Podcasts, and connect with Brent on LinkedIn.