Frog’s portfolio company Azimo has been acquired by Tiger Global, IVP and Bessemer backed payments unicorn, Papaya Global Inc, to build the undisputed leader in global workforce payment management. We are delighted to have supported Michael Kent, Richard Ambrose and their team in the UK and Poland.
Azimo grew revenues 660% during Frog’s ownership period and built a world class global payments infrastructure that Papaya Global has recognised as a key strategic asset for their next phase of growth.
Frog’s Senior Partner, Jens Düing tells the story of how we found Azimo back when digital money transfers were in their infancy, “Having experienced the cumbersome and expensive traditional process of sending money abroad, we scanned the market for solutions that made the process easier, safer and cheaper. Working with our network of early-stage investors, we were introduced to Azimo’s founder, Michael Kent. His knowledge of the market and of how to build a sustainable, scaling company was simply unrivalled. Azimo really understood the pain points of its customers and developed solutions to address them, building a very loyal customer base.”
Azimo’s development of their senior team has been outstanding with founder Michael Kent recruiting Richard Ambrose as COO from PayPal with Richard eventually taking the reins as CEO, as Michael moved into the Executive Chair role. This was part of a wider culture of promoting from within, where several senior roles including CFO and CTO have been internally cultivated. The quality and robustness of the team allowed them to manage successfully through difficult situations such as the pandemic and the Nigeria market issues. Strong governance and diversity were both important at the company and they stayed focused on their purpose of building out their global network to deliver low-cost remittance to migrants.
Over the course of our investment, we have worked closely with the Azimo team using Frog’s proprietary Scale-Up Methodology. Early on Jens’ focus and challenge on unit economics was vital to building sustainable growth and more latterly, following a smooth transition, I joined the Board to provide more technical support as the business matured towards exit.
We have played a strong part in team development, for instance as one of only two investor representatives on the remuneration committee, as well as mentoring key upandcoming executives like the current CFO.
Founder and Executive Chairman Michael Kent shared some kind words about working with Frog, “I’ve had the full court press from Frog. Jens doing the deal, Steven coaching the CFO, David telling me how to be a good Chairman, so I would like to thank Frog for getting down into the detail of the business and for all their support over the last 7 years.”
About the author
Steven has over 15 years of private equity experience gained both within private equity firms and as a senior executive of private equity backed companies. He joined Frog as CFO and Partner in charge of Portfolio in 2015. He represents Frog on the boards of Mediatonic, Scoota and Edited.