Wise cuts prices for money transfers as revenue surges

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£34bn transferred by customers Wise in the last 6 months – 44% up from the same period last year

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The recently launched fintech giant Wise is cutting prices for customers as its platform accelerates money transfers and drives revenue.

Wise said it transferred £34 billion on behalf of customers in the six months to 30 September. This was up 44% compared to the same period last year and revenue increased 33% to £256 million.

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Revenue grew at a slower pace than sales as Wise cut its prices. The company said it reported a 7 basis points decline in the average cost of moving money internationally on its platform over the period. CEO Christo Carman said this was part of the company’s mission to “make cross-border funding faster, easier, cheaper and more transparent everywhere, everywhere.”

Despite the lower prices, Wise’s gross profit margin rose from 62% to 68%. CFO Matt Brears said margins were rising due to increased operational efficiencies and negotiations on lower bank fees.

“We are reducing this friction between ourselves and our customers,” Briars told Standard.

Higher gross margin helped increase gross profit by 46% to £174 million, but pre-tax profit declined from £20 million to £18.8 million due to higher investment in hiring and product development. The company recently crossed 3,000 employees and expects to hire a further 1000 in the coming year, with many positions planned in London. Brears said Wise was recruiting for roles in operations, engineering and product.

Wise said it now expects revenue growth in the “mid to high” 20 percent range for the full year as the drop in prices encourages more people to use its platform. Gross margin for the full year should be between 65% and 67% thanks to the “higher than expected” cost savings.

Shares rose 69p, or 9.1%, to 825.4p.

Wise became London’s biggest tech listing ever in July when it went on the market for £8 billion in direct listings. Shares peaked at 1,140p in September, but fell after it emerged that CEO Karman had been fined for a personal tax mistake in the past.

Brears would not elaborate on the issue today, but he did say: “Obviously we take this incredibly seriously as a business.”

He said it was “thoroughly reviewed by the board” and Karman was advised to work with tax advisors to make sure his personal affairs were in order.

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