On this week’s LSA OnTarget podcast, we talk to Shubham Datta, a director at SurePath Capital Partners, an investment advisory firm that specializes in the small business SaaS industry. Our topic was Square, which announced its earnings on February 27.
Our conversation with Datta isn’t focused as much on the numbers as on where Square is taking the business. Will it succeed in moving upmarket to serve larger businesses? How important is cryptocurrency to its future? Has Square completed the task of building a fully integrated all-in-one business platform for SMBs?
The SurePath SMB Index tracks 35 publicly traded companies offering software and services to the SMB market. Square is one of the top performing companies in the index. It’s shares grew 151% in 2017 and are up about 30% year to date. The company’s strong Q4 results, featuring 36% net revenue growth, seem unlikely to stall the stock’s performance.
Square has come a long way from a business that helped food trucks take credit cards to really providing the operations backbone for many small businesses. It has also moved into the consumer world with its popular Cash App.
“What we are starting to see from Square is a transformation of the business from just a business that processes transactions to one that is really growing out its suite of products and services for merchants,” Datta said in our interview.
However, everything that Square does all comes back to driving payment volume, which means Gross Payment Value (GPV), the value of all the transaction that flow through Square’s platform, will continue to be a critical metric to gauge Square’s health as a business.
“At the end of the day, Square’s bread and butter is payment volume,” Datta said. “And all of the things they are doing is all helping merchants grow. And as merchants grown, the process more and more payments.”
Check out the full podcast here: