Order Simplifies Business Purchasing Using Virtual Cards

Order launched in 2016 to streamline purchase processes for businesses.

Co-founders and brothers Zach and Matt Garippa came up with the idea for Order when a friend who owned a CrossFit gym told them how stressful it was to deal with the daily operations of running a gym. Between coordinating shipments, payments for materials, and deliveries of fitness machinery that hadn't arrived yet, he never had time for his true passion: coaching at the gym.

This was Order’s first use case: procurement tools for people with no procurement experience.

Today, more than 300 businesses, including SoulCycle and WeWork, use Order’s software to manage all aspects of their business purchasing. Their customers also make purchases from Order’s ever-growing network of vendors.

Challenge

Order’s customers loved the consolidated bill feature. But behind the scenes, managing the backend process was still very difficult.

Most available accounts payable (AP) solutions relied on a 1:1 system of vendor invoices and business payouts. Different payment types, such as checks, cash, ACH, and cards, have different settlement processes which dictate the time it takes for suppliers to receive their funds. Since most legacy AP solutions rely on banking software and batch ACH payments, settlement would take 2 to 3 days.

Additionally, Order needed to manually divide up the costs of their consolidated bill by vendor and then disburse the correct dollar amount to each vendor.

The company initially solved this problem by partnering with a vendor to issue their own virtual cards and streamline their payment process. Every time a card was requested, the vendor would manually create card credentials for each order.

While this outsourced approach was helpful at first, the manual business operations became too inefficient to manage once Order’s program scaled to thousands of card requests per day.

In need of a way to execute these operations more programmatically, a mutual investor recommended looking into Lithic’s card issuing solution.

Lithic’s Card Issuing Solution

Garippa liked Lithic's API-first approach because it was developer friendly and would allow Order to integrate the data into their systems and workflows. He also liked that the platform was able to provide valuable data.

The developer-friendly piece was particularly important, because Order wanted to use the APIs to reimagine the way it paid its vendors. In the new setup, users would only have to press pay on one invoice. Behind the scenes, a single-use virtual card would be created for each order to distribute funds to as many vendors as the order contained.

This is exactly the solution that Garippa was looking for so he decided to go with Lithic.

Implementing Lithic

After implementing with Lithic in 2019, Order started receiving webhooks back when a card was authorized or settled, allowing the team to build proper controls around them.

“Launching with Lithic was easy, we got up and running in a couple of months and Lithic was supportive along the way.”

And Order’s new Lithic-enabled approval workflows ensure all of their spending would be automatically and accurately transmitted to their Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software so the right people could look at the right orders at the right time.

Streamlining Payment Processes

Order no longer has to manually track different invoices with different due dates between hundreds of clients and various vendors. Instead, they remit order and payment information automatically and simultaneously. This improvement was a big deal for both sides of the transaction.

“We wouldn’t be able to offer this level of automation at scale if we didn’t have Lithic on the backend streamlining our payments process.”

For their flagship order consolidation product, Garippa says Lithic is the “secret sauce” in the backend. Lithic has enabled Order to process more than $100 million in gross merchandise value (GMV) through its platform in 2021 — double what the company processed in 2020.

“Now, all of a sudden, Staples — one of the first big vendors to integrate with our API — loves us because they're getting paid sooner and they can trace each payment to the original purchase order.”

If you want to test out Lithic’s card solutions to streamline your payment process, contact us.