The New Zealand-based company rocketed past one million subscribers by adding nearly 300,000 subscribers in the last year.
Xero had just 50,000 subscribers 5½ years ago and now has more than a million subscribers in more than 180 countries.
“Five-and-a-half years ago, at 50,000 we asked shareholders to imagine our business at a million subscribers,” chief executive and founder, Rod Drury said.
“Starting around 10 years ago with our first lines of code, it’s amazing to see the global community who have built businesses on our platform.”
Drury said many subscribers were now doing business across borders — not just in their home countries — and he claimed cloud technology had reshaped trade over the last decade.
“We’re seeing the rise of truly global small businesses that have grown up without the need to operate within the confines of a single country’s borders,” he said.
“Only a global platform — on a single global code base like Xero — can offer the opportunity for small businesses and their advisors to expand their businesses offshore, connect to banks in multiple countries and use Xero’s technology and payment partnerships with Google, Apple, Square, Paypal, Stripe and others to do business seamlessly all over the world.
"It sets in motion a global network effect as small businesses expand their trade between countries.
“Many of the 100,000 business advisers who work with their clients on Xero have small businesses that import or export. The increasingly global nature of small business means that, like Airbnb, Amazon, and Facebook, accounting platforms must also be global. Surpassing one million subscribers positions us as a leading global cloud accounting platform. We’re just getting started.”
Xero is talking up Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning as the next wave of accounting innovation.
“Machine learning and automation will open up the next phase of innovation in accounting, driving a transition in the industry bigger than the move to the cloud did 10 years ago,” Drury said.
“With technology doing more of the time-consuming, data entry work, we will see more accountants take on advisory and virtual CFO roles within the small businesses they support.
Drury said cloud innovation had driven Xero’s rise “to help more than one million subscribers”, adding that “machine learning and automation will be the wave which enables us to scale to service millions of small businesses and advisers around the world”.