Equals eyes European growth amidst B2B revenue gains

Equals eyes European growth amidst B2B revenue gains

UK-based B2B payments provider Equals had a strong H1 23, with revenues rising 43% to £45m on the back of transaction values, which also grew 43% to just under £6bn. This was reflected in the company’s profits, with the company more than doubling its adjusted EBITDA over the same period while its EBITDA margin rose 620 bps to 21.8% in H1 23. 

Equals more than doubles adjusted EBITDA in H1 23
Equals half-year revenues, 2020-2023

Equals also said that year-to-date revenues were £63.6m, 39% up from the same period in 2022, showing growth has continued into the company’s Q3 23 trading results.

Equals key revenue drivers for H1 23

The company continues to see its highest growth from Equals Solutions, its payments platform for large enterprises and corporates, which saw 119% revenue growth to £13.6m. This is a scaled up version of Equals Money, which is more focused on small and medium enterprises and grew by 36% to £14m. The company’s consumer and small business segment, meanwhile, grew by just 10% (compared to 26% growth reported in H1 22), highlighting the company’s pivot from B2C to a B2B focus.

This can also be seen from a breakdown of how international payments specifically affect Equals revenues. For its medium enterprises segment, international payments revenue rose by 33% compared to H1 22 and accounted for 66% of the overall share of revenues. By contrast, international payments declined 10% YoY and only accounted for 22% of consumer and small business revenues.

Aside from EBITDA, gross profits also rose 59%, with profits driven by the company doing better deals with affiliates and its changing business mix towards Equals Solutions. This was despite a 39% increase in staff costs as a result of headcount increases, as the company looks to boost its compliance, sales and marketing efforts. 

Equals grows revenues on large enterprise transactions
Equals half-year revenues split by segment, 2021-2023

Equals Money Europe and future growth strategies

A large part of the call was focused on the company’s move into Europe, following its July acquisition of Belgium payments company Oonex – now called Equals Money Europe. 

As well as adding new banking partners and growing Equals Money Europe’s merchant acquiring segment, another major draw for the acquisition was Oonex’s ability to issue local International Bank Account Numbers for customers in Europe, which could greatly boost the payments reach for Equals’ customers. 

While it is still early days for the acquisition, the company did say that Equals Money Europe has so far accounted for around £0.5m in revenues, though it is not likely to become profitable over the next 12 months. Through the acquisition, Equals will be able to bring its payments, cards and multi-currency accounts to new customers in Europe. 

Oonex adds to a number of acquisitions for Equals, including open banking platform Roqqett and FX business Hamer and Hamer, aimed at growing the company’s card capabilities and customer reach on the continent. 

Equals executives also spoke about various ways they were looking to improve the company’s payments platform for clients, including fully automating outbound payment flows, enabling bulk payments for businesses (e.g. for global payrolls), and removing third-party SWIFT gateways to make payments more direct. 

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