Easol & InfiniteCFO:
Investing in a strategic finance function to fuel growth

Easol is a UK-based start-up providing a platform that is built to manage the entire experience business, including sales on creators’ own websites with smart booking, payment, and marketing tools that all work together, brilliantly.

In early 2021, with a growth rate of about 20% month over month, Easol had accumulated seed capital of $5 million. For the first time, the company formed a board and needed to be accountable to external investors. Producing the level of information demanded by the new investors and board fell on the shoulders of Ben Simpson, Easol’s co-founder and CEO.

Series A

Easol was working with a bookkeeping firm whose primary speciality was day-to-day accounting tasks. The company’s immediate need was to produce a funding model to prepare for a Series A fundraising. While Ben owned forecasting and the business model, he acknowledged that he needed better financial support from an experienced partner. Their reporting was not sophisticated, and as Ben describes, “We didn’t have good financial clarity and didn’t know what we didn’t know.”

On the recommendation of one of their investors, Easol brought in InfiniteCFO to provide senior CFO-level strategic support and to get them ready for fundraising. The InfiniteCFO team did a deep dive on Easol’s unit economics and built a robust financial model that could enable scenario planning as the company moved into its next stage of development. Focus was paid to the overall value of Easol’s customer accounts and building a model to determine rate of growth.

Having gone through the due diligence process on their own for their seed round, Ben understood how disruptive it could be to the business. The InfiniteCFO team took on the heavy lifting in getting Easol deal ready, enabling them to move quickly when the right opportunity presented itself. 

The InfiniteCFO team also spent time providing further financial training and support to Ben and the team so they could become more confident presenting their financial picture to existing and potential new investors.  As a result, Ben gained the confidence to answer any questions that were thrown at him from unit economics, to KPIs to scenario planning.

The result was Easol completing a $25M fundraising round – the 5th biggest financing for a SaaS-based company in the UK – with the InfiniteCFO team playing a fundamental role in managing that process smoothly.

Transformation to a strategic finance function

The experience with InfiniteCFO gave Ben real insight into how much value a strategic finance function brings to an organization. He turned to the team to transform the Easol finance function. The InfiniteCFO team took on the responsibility of finance operations, introducing new procedures and systems, as well as continuing to support the team strategically with business partners and board presence. The team was able to meet Ben’s objectives of having a credible finance function without having to hire several senior executives at the same time.

“Seed and Series A are interesting stages for recruiting C-level talent. We were trying to build out a team but didn’t want to hire several senior executives all at once,” Ben observed. “By finding a trusted partner to manage our finance function we were able to focus our recruiting efforts on other areas where we needed support such as in Engineering, Sales, and Customer Success.”

The combination of transforming and maturing the finance function and serving as a trusted advisor, made Easol well-equipped to have more sophisticated and informed discussions with investors.

Prioritizing for growth

Easol has ambitious targets for the growth of its platform as well as future fundraising. Partnering with InfiniteCFO has helped the company to fill operational gaps and establish a high-performance finance function.

As Easol’s employee base expanded,  InfiniteCFO recommended and helped recruit a skilled in-house finance business partner to manage day-to-day operations and reporting. InfiniteCFO continues to provide strategic insight, throttling resources according to Easol’s needs on an ongoing basis.