- Lumanu is a startup that says it wants to make life easier for creators.
- It offers invoicing, payment processing and expense management tools.
- Read 8 slides from the pitch deck he used to secure his recent $ 12 million Series A round.
Lumanu is one of the many startups that are catching the attention of influencers and investors as competition in the designer economy intensifies.
Lumanu provides ways for creators to create invoices, manage expenses, get paid by brands or customers, and collaborate with brands. All of these tools, aside from the prepayment, are free for creators, according to the company.
“At the end of the day, we think creators are business people with business issues,” Tony Tran, co-founder and CEO of Lumanu, told Insider. “But they want to focus on being creators.”
The startup wants to compete with companies like PayPal and Quickbooks as the software of choice for creators and freelancers trying to run their businesses, Tran said.
One selling point that Lumanu focuses on is helping creators get paid on time.
“When someone doesn’t pay you on time, it can mean money for rent, especially for smaller people,” Tran said.
Using Lumanu, creators can send invoices with automatic reminders and can also use a feature called “Creator Protection,” which guarantees payment up to $ 10,000 if the collaboration is coordinated from start to finish through Lumanu, according to Lumanu. the company’s website.
Lumanu also offers “EarlyPay”, an option to speed up certain payments. Creators can be paid directly by Lumanu prior to the common 30, 60, or 90 day net payment terms included in contracts. Lumanu handles these payments and charges a 2.9% processing fee.
“EarlyPay is our attempt to make sure everyone can get money when they need it,” Tran said.
Beyond creators, Lumanu also offers services to brands, such as connecting brands with influencers for collaborations, and a way to manage mass payments to influencers.
When Tran and his co-founders, Nhan Nguyen and Paul Johnson, set out to build Lumanu in 2016, the “creative economy” was not a concrete concept, he said.
Today, the designer economy has become a buzzword in the industry. Big tech moguls like Mark Zuckerberg talk about creators, and business and industry leaders are investing in
with spending expected to exceed $ 3 billion this year, according to Insider Intelligence.
In July 2021, Lumanu announced a $ 12 million Series A round led by Origin Ventures, bringing Lumanu’s total funding to $ 15.8 million, according to Crunchbase. The roundtable officially started in February 2021.
At the end of 2020, Tran started having casual conversations as Lumanu built his pitch deck for investors and planned his Series A, he said. A few months earlier, Patreon (a popular subscription and content platform for creators) raised $ 90 million, pushing it to a unicorn valuation.
“People know this space was hot,” Tran said.
When investors ask Lumau how they plan to make money, Tran has two answers: the processing fee for EarlyPay and subscriptions. Brands and agencies pay a monthly subscription to use Lumanu’s payment tools and advertising services, such as whitelisting creator content as ads.
Read 8 pages of Lumanu’s pitch deck he sent out to investors to raise his recent $ 12 million Series A round:
Note: Lumanu wrote a few pages of his pitch deck, which typically ranges from 10 to 12 pages, according to Tran.