How ClearTax is transforming compliance solutions in the GCC

Fintech SaaS platform ClearTax provides cloud-based e-invoicing solutions to large companies and can generate up to 12,000 e-invoices per minute.

How ClearTax is transforming compliance solutions in the GCC

Thursday February 15, 2024,

5 min Read

In today’s rapidly evolving business landscape, digital transformation is crucial for finance and tax compliance, enhancing accuracy, streamlining processes, ensuring compliance, reducing errors, and improving operational efficiency.

To simplify finances for businesses and individuals, Archit Gupta, Ankit Solanki, and Srivatsan Chari founded Clear in 2011. 

Formerly known as ClearTax, the fintech SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) platform offers a comprehensive product suite for businesses, including invoicing, GST compliance, managed services, and credit solutions, catering to tax professionals and individuals with expertise in tax compliance and wealth management.

The Bengaluru-based platform, which has over five million customers in India, “is used by over a million tax professionals, 600,000 small businesses, and over 5,000 large companies and brands,” Archit Gupta, Co-founder and CEO, Clear, tells YS Gulf.

The Indian I-T Department has also approved Clear as a partner for direct API integration with the government’s technical infrastructure for e-invoicing and GST.

Since its inception, the platform has raised $140 million in equity capital. It is backed by investors such as Kora Capital, Stripe, Alua Capital, Think Investments, Y Combinator, Composite Capital, Elevation Capital, Founders Fund, and Sequoia Capital.

Venturing into GCC 

After achieving significant milestones and growth in India, Clear, called ClearTax in the GCC, entered the region in 2021 after raising $75 million in Series C round led by Kora Capital, Stripe, Alua Capital, Think Investments, and existing investors.

The company has launched invoicing and taxation products for medium to large enterprises in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). It also assists businesses in adjusting to digital mandates and helps in automating financial processes.

According to Gupta, the cloud-based e-invoicing product can generate up to 12,000 e-invoices per minute.  

“The platform boasts a 99% uptime record, ensuring our clients have consistent access to our services. Our e-invoicing generation success rate stands at an impressive 98+%, reflecting the precision and effectiveness of our solutions,” he states.

The startup, which is working closely with government bodies like Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority (ZATCA), the tax authority of Saudi Arabia, plans to extend its offering to include VAT compliance, A/R automation, and B2B payments in the next 6-12 months.

“Our new products are tailored for the GCC’s evolving needs. These tools are designed to enhance efficiency and ensure regulatory adherence as the market heads into Phase III,” he says.

ClearTax’s pricing structure is based on document volume, adhering to global SaaS standards. It provides integration options like API and file transfer methods, making it compatible with various billing systems like ERPs, POS, and hand-held devices. 

To date, the platform claims to have onboarded more than 250 companies in the retail, telecom, and transport sectors, and is already live with more than 50 companies covered by Wave 1 and Wave 2 of ZATCA Phase II e-invoicing. VAT-registered businesses with more than ($800 million) turnover fall under Wave 1, and businesses with more than ($133 million) turnover fall under Wave 2.

ClearTax has also enabled the generation of more than 40 million ZATCA Phase II compliant e-invoices and easy integration with more than 1,000 ERP or PoS devices.

With over 750 employees across geographies, ClearTax uses a product-oriented delivery (POD) structure—a software development strategy that focuses on small cross-functional teams.


Localisation and customisation

Launched under the guidelines of the ZATCA, the platform is available in English and Arabic, with cloud servers hosted in the Kingdom.

Over the last two years, ClearTax has strategically invested in localising its product suite, ensuring Arabic language support, establishing a robust cloud infrastructure within the kingdom, and customising SaaS products to cater to local business needs, said Gupta. 

The company customises its solutions to meet geo- and tech-specific needs, collaborating closely with local partners to gain knowledge about regional laws.

“Our strategy focuses on adapting our solutions to align with the UAE market, emphasising Arabic language integration and compliance with the distinct legal framework of Gulf countries,” Gupta states.

Meanwhile, collaborating closely with government bodies, especially ZATCA, ClearTax has been actively working towards launching offerings tailored for the automation needs of enterprises.

According to IMRAC, the global e-invoicing market size was valued at $13.5 billion in 2023, expected to reach $60.9 billion by 2032, with a CAGR of 17.7% during 2024-2032.

ClearTax said it is planning to expand its geographical footprint and launch e-invoicing in the UAE, Bahrain, and Oman.

Data privacy and security measures

According to Gupta, ClearTax is prioritising data security in the KSA by adhering to industry standards like ISO 27001 and SOC-2, and comprehensive VAPT (Vulnerability Assessment and Penetration Testing). 

“Our data servers and applications are always locally deployed to comply with data residency laws of any territory. This ensures that all sensitive information remains confidential and secure across all touchpoints,” he explains.

ClearTax has implemented HTTPS protocols for all APIs to protect data in transit and securing ports for every connection to prevent breaches. The integration approach includes flexible options like FTP, API direct, or middleware, catering to diverse business needs while maintaining rigorous security. IP whitelisting further strengthens the system's security posture.

“This measure significantly reduces the risk of unauthorised access and potential data compromise,” he adds. 

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Edited by Megha Reddy