Shift lets SaaS companies integrate with dozens of financial tools with a unified API

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Pennylane, Qonto, AGCap, Pleo, and Mollie have one thing in common. They all use Shift in some way to manage integrations with other services. And this relatively young Belgium-based startup just raised a seed round of €2.3 million ($2.5 million at today’s exchange rate).

Many fintech startups rely on integrations to make their product work with their customers’ financial stack. They often build countless connectors and partner integrations to keep financial information consistent across multiple products. As their integration ecosystem grows, they sometimes rely on an iPaaS provider (Integration Platform-as-a-Service).

Shift essentially acts as a third-party integration specialist. It works a lot like Codat in the U.K. and Merge in the U.S. Instead of building connectors one by one, Shift provides a set of integrated APIs that are compatible with the most popular financial instruments.

For example, Shift has developed an accounting API that is compatible with French accounting software from Sage, CegID, and Pennylane. The company has also developed integrations around invoicing tools, e-commerce platforms, and point-of-sales software.

Shift has decided to focus on financial tools first. “We’re integrating with tools that generate financial data,” co-founder and CEO Gauthier Henrouz told TechCrunch.

Unlike other industries, the fintech market is still relatively fragmented – each European country has its own accounting or invoicing platforms. But being able to access financial data from any SaaS product can be useful.

As more companies start relying on Shift, the startup can add more connectors. All of Shift’s clients can benefit from these new integrations. As an added benefit for Shift, this lowers the barrier to entry for new entrants.

“In Europe, that’s where all the complexities are. Things will be different in each country, particularly around accounting, point of sale and invoicing tools,” said Henroes.

“We help our customers, who then sell more or open up new markets. There’s a lot less volatility because you’re integrated, you’re connected, you connect them to others and you create new opportunities for them,” he said later in the conversation.

Developing integrations is not a one-time project. Companies release updates to their APIs, which can lead to failures. It is Chift’s job to maintain these integrations. SaaS companies can focus on their core product instead of those integrations.

Investors in the seed round include Entourage (Pieterjan Bouten’s fund), Schepers (Filipe Teixeira da Mota’s fund), Cedar Fund and several business angels. “Our goal is to become the European leader,” said Henroos.

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