Why We Invested (Yet Again) in Papaya Global

Less than four months after our initial strategic secondary investment, Group 11 is pleased to announce that Papaya Global has completed a $40MM Series B Round led by Scale Venture Partners with participation from Workday Ventures, Access Industries (via its Israeli investment vehicle Claltech), and existing investors Insight Venture Partners, New Era Capital Partners, Dynamic Loop Ventures, Bessemer Ventures and Group 11.

On a rocketship’s trajectory, Papaya Global’s digital HR platform has more than tripled its business since its September 2019 Series A and has added new name brand clients like DataDog, nCino, Hopin to name a few. In addition to the growth and new clients, we’ve seen Papaya Global expand its Global Equity and Contractor Management Features, as well as execute a strategic acquisition of Mensch in July 2020.

At Group 11, we are not surprised to see the success and confirmation of Papaya Global’s mission and business model in this new fundraise. As we shared in Group 11’s June Medium article, PEO, Payroll, and HR software is a huge and growing market and Papaya Global’s one-stop platform and digital workforce management solution handles all of a global company’s HR & Payroll needs. Papaya Global’s digital offering allows fast growing companies and enterprise clients to globally scale headcount in minutes and keeps them in tax and legal compliance at low costs. The need for these types of digital HR & Payroll services has only accelerated in 2020.

The global economic effects of COVID and Work From Home (WFH) orders of 2020 have decentralized and distributed workforces and every company is now fixated on improving its operating margins in tighter times. Every globally-minded company must transform its business with digital offerings and Robotic Process Automation (‘RPA’) solutions especially in its HR department, and Papaya Global’s platform is leading this transformation. (For more of our thoughts on this subject, see Group 11’s ‘Equities Gone Wild — Bubble or Beginning?’ article on Medium)

ScaleVP Partner Rory O’Driscoll will join Papaya Global’s Board. ScaleVP brings top tier experience with successful exits like Bill.com, Box, DocuSign, as well as recent investment in the growing Human Resource (HR) software and fintech markets like Namely, Lever, and Root Insurance. We are excited to welcome ScaleVP to the company and have additional strongly-aligned investors who believe in the future of HR automation and Papaya Global on the company’s board.

This new round and Papaya Global’s growing market leadership is validation of Group 11’s investment thesis and verification of the execution and determination of Papaya Global’s team. Congratulations to CEO and Co-Founder Eynat Guez, CPO and Co-Founder Ruben Drong, CTO and Co-Founder Ofer Herman, and to everyone at the Papaya Global family!

Dovi Frances is a financial services entrepreneur and founding partner of Group 11, a venture capital firm based in Los Angeles, California.