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WorldFirst announces "international banking" platform for SMEs

WorldFirst announces “international banking” platform for SMEs

(9 May 2017 – Europe) Business foreign exchange provider, WorldFirst has announced the launch of the fintech’s new platform World Account, which it says will allow small to medium businesses to open local bank accounts around the world with no fees, hold balances, receive incoming and make outgoing local payments all from one platform online or via an app.

In a blog post, World First said the platform will “international banking functionality” on a single platform without the associated “cost, hassle and upheaval of traditional international business banking.”

According to the firm, 1.5 million UK SMEs make trades worth £78 billion every month.

Commenting on the launch, Jonathan Quin, Co-founder and CEO at WorldFirst said: “We’re very excited to be launching our World Account, the first multi-currency international payments platform for businesses. It’s time that small and medium-sized businesses enjoyed the same products, price and service that was only previously available to big businesses.”

“Our World Account will solve what is a pain point for many ambitious businesses who buy or sell internationally enabling them to manage their international accounts in one single platform wherever and whenever they want. We think this will be the world’s most flexible financial platform to support a new era of international business.”

The new platform will be available to businesses and online sellers in the UK and Europe on limited release mid-2017 both online and through a mobile app. WorldFirst says it will add more currency accounts and functionality later this year.

East & Partners Europe’s UK Business FX program has found that non-bank FX providers are increasing their primary market share. According to the research, the biggest non-bank provider was US group Western Union, rising to 3.4 percent from 3.0 percent, followed by Monex, CMC, IG Markets, Saxo Bank and American Express. Small boutique providers doubled their share to 3.8 percent.

"High Street banks continue to hold more than half the market but at best saw no growth or decline in their share," East & Partners’ head of client servicing Simon Kleine said.

"There is a lot more shopping around, and we can see the effects both in terms of market and wallet share. Some international banks have seen small increases in share and there's been a resurgence in growth by many non-bank providers." 

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