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Exclusive: Gr4vy Pours $1.1M Seed Into Platform For Payment Tools

Cloud payment orchestration platform Gr4vy is taking on the $1 trillion annual retail payments market with a tool to simplify the way businesses add payments infrastructure to their processes.

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To finish out the product and go live, San Mateo, California-based Gr4vy brought in its first institutional funding round of $1.1 million led by Activant Capital and Global Founders Capital with participation from Plug and Play Ventures.

Gr4vy was founded in August by Ali Minaei and Cristiano Betta and is led by John Lunn, CEO, who formerly held a leadership position at PayPal. Throughout his career in payments, Lunn said he kept seeing the same problem of an increasingly complex infrastructure.

“Everyone is building pipes, but not building the plumbing,” Lunn said. “Companies were building something to process payments, but as those got varied, the merchant had to build a system to manage the pipes. Instead of repeating this, Gr4vy is taking the payments team into the cloud and allowing the financial people to run it.”

As a result, Gr4vy’s “no-code” payments orchestration platform enables mid-sized businesses the ability to add the full spectrum of payments infrastructure from the beginning, as well as host and expand it as needed without taking on technical debt. It also charges customers per service rather than transaction. In addition, the platform provides a hub for reporting, monitoring and managing a payments infrastructure.

The platform is still in the test-and-build phase, and the aim is to go live on the platform in the first quarter of 2021, while also adding partners and merchants. Lunn expects to complete the engineering team and then focus on marketing and sales. Gr4vy intends to launch in the U.S. and in Europe at the same time, so its team is split between the U.S. and London, he added.

Andrew Steele, a member of the investment team at Activant, said in an interview that the firm had known Lunn for a while, and when they knew he was building this product, they felt Lunn, Minaei and Betta were the right team to do it.

“The market has evolved a lot, making Gr4vy necessary for the future,” Steele said. “Commerce is becoming more international, so being able to accept other forms of payment is critical. Gr4vy allows that from Day One.”

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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