Paypa Plane turned 5 this January.
Five years is a strange amount of time. A lot can happen in five years, but equally, it can feel like no time has passed at all. Because of this, it’s taken me longer than I would have thought to write these short paragraphs (as requested by our fabulous Head of Marketing and Comms Katie Norbury) because so much has happened over the past five years for Paypa Plane that I have struggled to encapsulate it all.
So, I’ll start with the tangible things (the easy bits) – in year 1, we started working from home with a small team of six. We did that for 12 months before it was cool. We only met every Friday for lunch. It wasn’t ideal or much fun, but it got us through.
In year 2, we moved into our first office - in Adelaide St. It felt like a big step – and it was. We grew by 2 people, and that year, we started work on our first ISO27001 accreditation as requested by our first banking client. At the time, this felt like a huge mountain to scale. When we got to the top and looked at the view, we realised there were many more, even bigger mountains to climb, but we were getting comfy in our climbing gear.
In year 3, we all returned to working from home, but this was 2020, so everyone was doing it. For us, it felt like déjà vu.
In year 4, we realised that we needed to grow our team again, and our cozy Adelaide St office would no longer fit us all in. So, we headed down the road to The Annex on Creek St and kept growing. By the end of that year, we would have more team members than desks (again), but, The Annex felt like home, so, in year 4, we moved our team upstairs into a space fitted out just for us and to fit all of us. Today, we are 42 people.
It’s easy to track our physical movements and growth but less easy to articulate our growth in other ways. I am not the same person I was 5 years ago. I have learned so much – from the team around me, the things we have created, the experiences we have had, the storms we have weathered and the wins we have celebrated that I couldn’t possibly be the same person, and that is true of the entire Paypa Plane team. The strength of the people, platform and the product that we have today, the health of the living organism that is our team dynamic and culture and the space we have carved out and defined for ourselves is a direct reflection of and testament to the people that made Paypa Plane and continue to make Paypa Plane. To say that I am proud of all we have done is so much of an understatement that it seems almost silly to write it.
Another understatement is to say that I am also intensely proud of our co-founder- Jonathan Grant- who is often not as visible as I am but is always, always there – sometimes as the voice of reason, sometimes as a very necessary challenger, sometimes as a coach- but always there. Without Jonathan, I can’t imagine where we would be.
Honestly, I do not think I could imagine how anything would have worked out without Grant Benvenuti, Liam O, Sean Kennedy , Dean Bolton, and Damian Joyce – all people who have been through the early years and poured themselves, their talent, time and especially their faith into this company. Then we have Dave Walker, who stepped in our door and started sorting us out from a product and ops perspective and didn’t stop there, so we made him COO and it was one of the best things we ever did. I could go on and name every single team member here in succession and truthfully say that you have all made us who we are today, and for that, you have my deepest respect and gratitude.
We are not done. Not even close. If these 5 years have taught us anything, it's that we have SO MUCH MORE to do. We invented Smart Payment Agreements™, and now we need to bring them to the world – we have a bit to go and an entire range of mountains to climb together yet!