2011
Founded
337
Companies
728
Members
500
Visitors/wk
Summary
  • Manually invoiced their members using Xero
  • Spent almost 8 hours a week on manual accounting, reconciling numbers between gateway and accounting system
  • Expanded to 3 new geographies in less than 18 months
  • Realized reconciling data between gateway and accounting is a full-time job and prone to more human errors
  • Evaluated ways to improve process efficiency
  • Team migrated to Chargebee in 2018
  • The Chrome plugin reconciled data between Stripe, Xero, and Chargebee - cut down manual accounting by 32 hours every month
  • Finance is now able to dedicate more time in analysis and strategy

Fishburners is Australia’s largest not-for-profit community for scalable tech startups.

The changing face of co-working space…

Modern-day co-working spaces are a recent phenomenon. The segment established that its here to stay with an impressive annual growth rate, around 2007-08. Over the years, co-working spaces have taken on traditional workspaces, constantly evolving, constantly adapting to new demands.

Fast forward to 2018 and coworking space is a full-blown industry that has disrupted real estate and the way people work. It is on the road to becoming the new normal, putting tenants in control of these spaces. These type of workplaces add a human approach to designing work style - from creating common workspaces to building a sense of community to now offering workspaces-as-a-service.

Australia has been leading the pack to build that kind of a network and enable a support system for startups. It has been home to several budding startups and a thriving entrepreneurial streak. So it only makes sense to offer these startups the same level of flexibility, affordability, and convenience. And subscription models are designed with these offerings in mind.

Members have mentioned that our biggest value add is our community of like-minded entrepreneurs who advise and support each other in their ventures.

Aayush Patel

Finance Manager, Fishburners

Starting Up…

Fishburners, based in Sydney, Australia, is one of the largest, not-for-profit community of tech startups that hosts 300+ companies, and 700+ members and on an average has 500 visitors a week. Founded in 2011 by Peter Davison, a seed investor of Paypal and Mike Casey, founder of GradConnection, their mission is to create spaces for aspiring technology entrepreneurs to learn, communicate, and collaborate.

Since then, Fishburners has continued to be a highly collaborative community with world-class founders from different backgrounds and expertise. They have had more than 1000+ founders walk through their doors and in the last 18 months they have tripled their membership and expanded to Brisbane, and Shanghai, China.

Fishburners has always been a founder-focused community, providing opportunities for members to grow their startups. Besides, hosting coworking spaces for startups, they offer a plethora of services such as dedicated desks, community hot desks and virtual memberships. Membership includes meeting rooms, idea spaces, complimentary beverages perks and deals from sponsors, pro bono sessions from industry experts, community events, workshops and more.

Trivia: Interestingly, Fishburn is also the largest of the three First Fleet storeships to send supplies to sustain what became the first European settlement in Australia.

Scaling throws new issues… And new opportunities…

Fishburners expanded fast. Since scaling to three locations and tripling their membership base in less than 18 months, they realised that a subscription or membership management product was needed to support them as they grew.

With growth came the challenge of billing, invoicing and member management. After extensive research, we decided to use Chargebee, a subscription billing and management product that integrates with Xero.

Aayush Patel

Finance Manager, Fishburners

Before using Chargebee, Fishburners used Xero for all of their invoicing and accounting, and Stripe for collecting payments from their members. The payment gateway data had to be manually reconciled with their invoice data. Due to the lack of an integration between the payment gateway and accounting system, the team at Fishburners would spend time manually matching Xero invoice data to gateway charges on bank statements.

This process was prone to errors and it also wasn’t the best use of our time. Since Chargebee integrates with both the payment gateway and Xero, we can now automate the entire process without any hassle, whilst simultaneously managing our memberships in one place.

Aayush Patel

Finance Manager, Fishburners

After Chargebee - the biggest impact…

By choosing Chargebee as their subscription management platform, Fishburners saw several aspects of their business improve - particularly in terms of delivering a great customer experience,

Freedom from Accounting hassles
One of the biggest impact areas with the integration is for the finance and accounting team at Fishburners.
Freedom to self-serve with customer portal
Fishburners managed to create an unmatched customer experience by automating and simplifying the membership management process. Chargebee’s simple and intuitive UI, along with the built-in customer portal gives members of Fishburners the freedom to self-service by accessing, editing and pausing their subscriptions.
Freedom from bad debts with Dunning
The payment recovery feature has also helped prevent potential revenue loss from payment failures.
Other winners
Other aspects that stand out include Chargebee’s easy integration with their payment gateway, multi-currency support, and tax-supported invoicing.
growth story
Our finance team no longer spends long hours on mundane manual work and we now have more time to do financial analysis and make strategic business decisions. [With Chargebee] less time is spent punching in numbers and more time spent is on the big picture”

Aayush Patel

Finance Manager, Fishburners

When accounting got a facelift…

One of Fishburners’ biggest concerns before they decided to use Chargebee was changing their internal accounting and finance processes. However, while Chargebee’s integration with Xero retained most of their existing processes, the nifty Chrome Plugin that automates payments reconciliation in the click of a button changed the effort significantly.

We were pleased to find out that the simple usability of both software has enabled us to keep most of our previous processes intact, it’s just eliminated the manual parts. We use Chargebee’s Google Chrome plugin to further simplify the reconciliation process. The Chrome plugin matches our payment transactions with our bank statements in Xero, after which we can reconcile with a click of a button. The plugin has been superb.

Aayush Patel

Finance Manager, Fishburners

The single source of truth…

The integration also changed the dynamics of Fishburners’ customer service team. Before Chargebee, the customer service teams had to heavily rely on the finance team for any billing information of their customers, since they did not have access to Xero, given the sensitive nature of financial data stored in Xero.

Chargebee’s role-based access helps our customer service team directly login to the billing system and access restricted data. The product, therefore, serves as an excellent source of truth for not just our financial data, but all our membership data that’s relevant cross-functionally.

Aayush Patel

Finance Manager, Fishburners

Smart companies like Fishburners use Chargebee to automate their membership management. Try out Chargebee for free. And check out Fishburners if you are looking for a space to seed your next idea and establish your presence in Australia or China.