Xero has launched a payroll service for customers in Australia, 10 months after acquiring the Paycycle business across the Tasman for A$1.5 million in stock and cash.

Xero payroll adds to the company's existing cloud-based accounting system and reflects "the successful integration of the Paycycle team into Xero since the acquisition," chief executive Rod Drury said in a statement. He called the payroll offering "the most significant development for Australian customers" since Xero launched there in 2008.

Xero payroll is being offered at no additional cost under the company's existing pricing plans.

Shares of Xero rose 0.8 per cent to $4.03 on the NZX. They have about quadrupled since being sold in an initial public offering at $1 apiece in May 2007, attracting high-profile investors including Trade Me founder Sam Morgan.


The company abandoned its guidance of breaking even last year, saying it needed to chase revenue growth and market size. This month it posted a full-year loss of $7.9 million, while reporting that "annualised committed revenue" surged 82 per cent to $25.5 million and customer numbers more than doubled. It warned of a bigger loss for the current year.