Clear expects up to $100M revenue from Middle East expansion in 5 yrs
IT company Clear, which focuses on online tax filing, expects to generate $100 million from the Middle East business expansion led by Saudi Arabia and the UAE that are gradually moving towards taxation regime, a top official of the company said.
Clear chief business officer Rohit Razdan told PTI that the company is planning to invest in the range of $15-30 million in the next two years to build capacity in the Middle East, specially in expanding the team size.
"Given the magnitude of the change and willingness of businesses to move towards digital finance - including compliance, payments and broader financial services - we believe that Clear can get $ 50-100 million in the next 3-5 years from Middle East region, a good portion of which will be from KSA and UAE," Razdan said.
The company has raised $140 million till date and is backed by global firms such as Y Combinator, Sequoia Capital, Kora Capital, Composite Capital, Elevation Capital, among other VCs.
Clear's last fundraise of $75 million in C round focussed on international expansion of the company's business. The funding was led by Kora Capital, alongside global fintech Stripe, Alua Capital, Think Investments and existing investors.
"The Middle East region did not have taxation for a number of years. Saudi Arabia, which is the largest market, has decided to have various kinds of taxation that they would be implementing.
"At this point in time, we have modified our current stacks, which is working well with Indian companies and localising it at multiple levels like language, currency, time zones. We are getting good responses and we believe it will continue to become a major market in the coming 2-3 years," Razdan said.
He said that the company would require 50-150 people for the operations as it plans to have presence in the top three-four of Saudi Arabia and top two cities of the UAE, Abu Dhabi, Dubai.
"By the end of this financial year, we expect to have 100-120 customers from the present 50-60 customers. We are limited by our own capacity to service these customers and hence trying to build the teams. We plan to hire 50-100 people in the next six months, but that will depend on the Covid restrictions and certain government developments," Razdan said.
Clear has already deployed 30 people for business in the Middle East countries, he said.