Category:  SCF Innovation

Winner: Earnd – Greensill

The 2020 SCF Innovation award is presented to Earnd – an Australian tech company acquired by supply chain finance provider Greensill earlier this year.

The start-up was founded in Australia in 2018 with the aim of helping people access the money they have earned as soon as possible to give them more control over their finances.

Earnd addresses the issue that an estimated $1 trillion of credit is provided by the world’s employees to their employers. Employees often wait until the end of the month for their salary which effectively means they are providing their employers with up to 30 days credit.

Waiting for payday can cause unnecessary financial stress to employees who might be in sudden need of immediate access to cash, according to Earnd.

The tech start-up created a mobile phone app that lets employees see and access their pay as they earn it in real time. It aims to give employees more financial control and autonomy over their pay and when they receive it.

The concept fitted with Greensill’s view that all workers are effectively suppliers and there is no difference between a company making an early invoice payment to a supplier – as in a typical supply chain finance programme – or making an early payment to a worker.

“Greensill has a great track record for innovation, be it SCF funds for corporate treasurers or use of capital markets to fund an SCF programme, “ said Michael Henke, professor at Fraunhofer Institute, board member of the SCF community and judge for this year’s awards.

“By constantly developing their products and adapting them to the technology-changing economic landscape, Greensill not only shows flexibility and adaptability but also future-oriented thinking,”

Following the acquisition in March, Earnd was rolled out to National Health Service (NHS) workers in the UK for free to support staff during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The company plans to ensure the app will be free to all employees and public sector employers in the future, with private sector employers paying a small fee, which Earnd argues will be worth it for the improved rates of staff retention and productivity.

According to Earnd research, companies see an average of a 19 per cent reduction in employee turnover when on-demand pay is offered as a company benefit. It also found that one in two people said they would be more productive and engaged if their company offered on-demand pay.