TransferWise is moving further into traditional banking territory, setting up a 'borderless' bank account for businesses that need a multi-currency account for trading in overseas markets.
The UK-based money transfer company, which is set to record its first operating profit this year and claims more than one million customers, has set its sights on another disruptive business opportunity by capitalising on its reputation for bank-beating, slick and cheap money transfers.
The new account tackles the painful problems faced by small businesses trying to open multi-currency trading accounts with incumbent banks. TransferWise's borderless account comes with no set up fees or monthly charges and costs nothing for receiving payments in the local currency. Currency transfers are conducted at the standard mid-market exchange rate with the usual upfront Transferwise commission charge.
The move into the business account market follows a promise made by CEO Taavet Hinrikus earlier this month that the money transfer business was "just the starting point", for a company which more than doubled revenue in the year to March 2017, and now claims a 10% share of the overseas money transfer market in the UK.
The new borderless account will be launched initially in the UK and Europe followed by a global roll-out for small business and sole traders later this year. Consumer accounts, complete with a debit card, are also on the drawing board.
Says Hinrikus: "With the unique platform we’ve built, we’re looking forward to creating a new kind of financial services for the future."