Cobee is a thriving Spanish fintech startup launched in 2019 by Borja Aranguren, Daniel Olea and Nacho Travesí with the clear goal of revolutionising neglected and often unexploited employee benefits management across a huge range of companies and industries. The innovative brand’s raison d’être revolves around automating and streamlining benefits to improve access, usage, and participation.
The ambitious project quickly turned into a force for innovation and has achieved 80% employee adherence to benefits and perks programmes, a result which has attracted a great deal of attention from clients and investors alike.
Cobee secured €2.1 million in “pre-series A” funding in a round co-led by Target Global and Speedinvest, existing investors at BStartup (Banco Sabadell), Lanai Partners, Abac Nest, and backing from Chris Bouwer. Fast-forwarding to 2021, the company raised €14 million in a round led by Balderton Capital, providing a massive boost to continue expanding their services and a huge vote of confidence from a venture capital firm that rarely invests in Spain. The company now boasts at least 200 customers across the country, including TripAdvisor, PwC and Glovo and is expanding its horizons to Portugal and Mexico, one of Latam’s biggest economies.
Dealing with a vital and often forgotten part of any company’s employee retention strategy
It would be fair to say that employee benefits are often neglected and left at the bottom of a huge list of other company priorities. Many CEOs hadn’t stopped to think about the significant loss and impact this trend has had on companies, in both financial and engagement-based terms. At least that was the case until Cobee launched itself onto the scene with a distinct and exciting proposal.
Cobee’s founding team wanted to resolve this massive gap and find a way to optimise access and awareness around benefits in a flexible and easy way, with a view to minimising losses and enhancing employee engagement. The approach centres around an online platform and a VISA card which employees sign up to and use to access of all of the perks provided by their employers. A huge jump was identified when analysing engagement with Cobee’s services against other competitors’ platforms, with up to 65% more engagement from employees. Essentially, this provides a guarantee to companies that their employees will access and use the services provided.
From an employee perspective, benefits, and perks, including medical and dental services, food vouchers, grocery shopping support, insurance and travel allowances can represent at least 15% increase in salary when used correctly. Furthermore, at present, both the general population and the business world have become more focused on emotional skills and the concept of “emotional salary” is now a talking point, meaning that employees will only continue to demand and come to expect more previsions in terms of lifestyle benefits.
Excellent benefits for clients – companies achieve huge penetration
While employees themselves reap many rewards, Cobee’s key clients are the companies who hire the platform. Cobee employs an easy and streamlined model which involves charging a SaaS fee per active employee while providing a system where all benefits and perks are brought together to be accessed from one location which avoids headaches and stress for busy HR departments.
Employers seeking to enhance engagement, retention and loyalty from their teams benefit greatly from using Cobee’s service, particularly in current times and in a post-COVID-19 world. Companies have had to radically change their approach to employee well-being and how health and lifestyle services are administered and contemplated. Many CEOs have come to observe an uncomfortable trend in employee engagement since the start of the pandemic, coined as “The Great Resignation” in the US, describing a situation where employees are prepared to leave their jobs if they feel their well-being is not being nurtured through relevant perks and flexibility.
On the other hand, companies also save time and money by contracting a flexible and reliable benefits management service. HR departments invest huge amounts of logistics in providing perks and benefits schemes which often go unused and can end up becoming a liability if not engaged with correctly.
The Startup CFO: working closely with Cobee since Day 1
At The Startup CFO, we draw our motivation from the passion and success of our clients, using our expertise as an external CFO service to guide, advise and propel startups to the next level and provide fundamental support while scaling up. We’ve worked alongside Cobee from the very beginning, providing fundamental support in all of their CFO management, including guidance and support through their most recent funding rounds. We are immensely proud of Cobee’s success as a Spanish company seeking to revolutionise and innovate as they look towards a future of enhancing and expanding personalised and flexible employee benefits packages in Spain and much further afield.