Edison Partners said it exited payments management software provider Bento for Business, selling the Chicago-based company to U.S. Bank and posting a 60% internal rate of return on its investment.
Bento helps small and mid-sized businesses control monthly expenses and improve cash flow through a card-based digital spend management platform. Edison said that since its founding six years ago, companies have spent nearly $800 million using Bento’s technology.
Edison General Partners Kelly Ford and Michael Kopelman worked with Bento Founder Farhan Ahmed in 2018 to lead the company’s growth round. Since then, Bento has expanded its customer base by more than three times and customer spend by more than eight times.
“Bento achieved something that not many, if any, in the SMB fintech space have, and that is capital-efficient growth. The company stood steadfast on a differentiated value proposition around expense controls for small businesses, and resisted adding commoditized ‘me too’ features offered by competitors,” Ford said in a statement. “[CEO Guido Schultz] built on this foundation, leveling up sales and marketing and moving upmarket with solutions for mid-sized businesses. We’re proud of and grateful to Guido, Farhan and team for being great partners in delivering this outcome.”
Bento’s accounts payable software will complement the buyer’s existing Elavon and talech accounts receivable products, providing clients with “a holistic one-stop experience for both their accounts payable and accounts receivable needs,” U.S. Bank said in a statement.
The Bento exit marks Edison’s fourth deal with a top financial services provider in a little more than a year. Previous sales include Clearpool to BMO Financial Group; Scivantage to Refinitiv, and Solovis to Nasdaq. The transaction is Edison’s twelfth exit in the last 12 months. Other notable deals include Jornaya to Verisk; PandoLogic to Veritone; and Trialscope to Informa.
Princeton-based Edison Partners targets high-growth companies located outside Silicon Valley with $10 million to $30 million in revenue. The firm manages more than $1.4 billion in assets.
Financial terms of the Bento deal were not disclosed. Closing is expected in September.