Gerry Giacoman
CEO
Clara
/
View from the Top

Companies Want Credit Card Traceability, Flexibility: Clara

By Sofía Hanna | Tue, 03/22/2022 - 08:36

Q: What are Clara's advantages over other expense management solutions?

 A: We started Clara because we saw a huge need and opportunity all across Latin America. Clara’s services are those that we as entrepreneurs and as businesses wanted to have. We work to help companies be more competitive while remaining agile and maintaining financial clarity. We set up our own infrastructure and license with Mastercard to issue credit cards. We are the first corporate credit card that does not work with a bank but can still be obtained in 24 hours.

 

It has to do with the sense of locality, the fact that to every country we go, we build a local team from scratch so we can serve companies in each country and makes it easier for the team to understand their needs.

 

Clara was built to provide our customers with the best experience. Our cards are delivered quickly to customers anywhere in the country. We have not stopped at providing the best corporate credit cards in the market; we also help companies organize their corporate expenses in one platform.

 

Q:  How can digital expense management within large companies help their day-to-day operations?

 A: Companies value real-time visibility over each employee and the ability to set limits on company cards for better management of expenses for each group. There is a broad spectrum of financial needs but companies value having a card instead of using methods such as petty cash. At Clara, we provide everything a company might require, maintaining up-to-date logs while also offering flexibility. Our clients want the best of both worlds: full traceability while giving employees freedom to use the card.

 

Q: What are the plans to develop the company since it achieved Unicorn status?

 A: We invest strongly to ensure that the quality of our experience scales up with the company. Clara grows by acquiring more clients, so we need to continue offering the service in the way it was initially planned. Other investments are targeted at completing our product vision, which is helping companies organize their expenditures in one unified platform. Finally, we are trying to expand even more within the region to help companies that have operations in multiple countries in Latin America.

 

Q: What similarities have you found between the Brazilian and the Mexican markets?  

A: There are many similarities between Mexico and Brazil, for example, both countries have a high mobile and tech penetration which makes it easier to provide digital solutions. The differences lay in regulations for financing and payments, which we have to be very careful with. However, both countries have similar needs. The product in Brazil is almost the same as that in Mexico. We have grown in Brazil much faster than during our launch in Mexico.

 

From the start, Clara was built as a product that was prepared for expansion at any given time. We have investors in Brazil and seeing them bet on Clara has been essential for that expansion. We have plans to expand to other countries in Latin America, such as Colombia, Peru and Chile.

 

Q: How did the Mastercard license endorsement boost Clara’s operations?

 A: We had been seeking this alliance since our early stages. We wanted to be able to work under our own credit card license to launch credit cards at a regional level. Innovation in the financial sector can happen through partnerships between innovators like us and institutions like Mastercard.

 

Q:  What does 2022 have in store for Clara?

 A: Our growth has only accelerated so we will continue to innovate. We are a tech company so the Clara experience will only get better through features that will make the platform easier to operate. In 2022, we will become a solution that allows companies to manage both payments and their timing. We are also a credit provider, and we will release additional credit options because we believe that having access to liquidity is part of what helps companies be more competitive. Finally, we are also planning an aggressive expansion throughout the Mexican region.

 

Clara is an end-to-end corporate spend management solution for growing businesses in Latin America. Clara’s credit cards, spend management solution, and bill pay platform are already being used by some of the most fast-growing startups and enterprises in LatAm.

Sofía Hanna Sofía Hanna Journalist and Industry Analyst