On September 28, Square announced it is bringing its business expense card to the Canadian market.
Calling Canada its second-largest international market, Square stated the move better positions it to meet the needs of its businesses customers in the country.
“We’ve heard, time and time again, that cash flow is a major pain point for Canadian businesses.”
The Square Card gives businesses instant access to the money processed through Square. It has been available in the United States since early 2019.
The addition of Square’s business card to the Canadian market comes as homegrown tech companies have also moved into the business card space in recent years. In 2020, both Wave and Shopify launched business bank account products for their customers, including cards. Notably, however, both companies have yet to launch their offering to Canadian businesses, in favour of entering the United States market first.
The corporate card market also recently saw the creation of Toronto FinTech startup Float, which launched in 2019 and recently secured $5 million to expand its offering in Canada. With a specific focus on Canada, Float’s Visa-issued cards integrate directly with a company bank account and automatically maintain a desired balance on the cards. Unlike its competitors, Float’s products come without a mandate to serve just Square, Shopify, or Wave customers.
Also in the space is Canadian startup Caary, which announced $4.1 million in financing earlier this year as part of crowdfunding that included 150 investors.
Float and Caary bring Brex-like offerings to Canada, the latter a major player in the corporate card space in the United States. Earlier this year, Brex raised $425 million at a $7.4 billion valuation, shortly after competitor Ramp reached a $1.6 billion valuation.
While these United States-based companies have grown, they have been mainly focused on the United States, leaving Canadian SMBs without a similar alternative to existing corporate cards. This has left space for the likes of Float and Caary, but also Square. And while the Square Card may only be for the use of Square customers, that customer base spans millions of businesses, globally.
The decision to enter Canada included a survey conducted of almost 2,000 Canadian customers that were given early access to the card. Square reported that those involved expressed strong interest in real-time access to the money they process through Square.
“We’ve heard, time and time again, that cash flow is a major pain point for Canadian businesses. Often, it’s the reason they continue accepting cash, despite it being time-consuming and costly to manage,” said Christina Riechers, head of product and business banking at Square. “Businesses should be able to access their money as soon as they make a sale, and we’re proud to bring that experience to sellers across Canada.”