In the same week that TransferWise has been rumoured to be picking up a billion dollar valuation, foreign exchange (forex) giant Travelex has launched a £25m fund to get involved in the digital revolution.
The first of its kind in the forex sector, Travelex will use the fund to make strategic seed investments and tech acquisitions as it hopes to develop a range of new products.
Older foreign exchange businesses have been put under pressure in recent years by a plethora of startups trying to claim their turf and Travelex has also announced a major recruitment drive for digital talent.
Travelex is one of the world’s biggest online forex companies with 1,500 stores and 1,250 ATMs across 28 countries.
The company recently announced the appointments of former Google, eHarmony and Shutl executive, Sean Cornwell and MOO.com executive Dave Wascha to the newly created roles of Chief Digital Officer and Global Head of Digital Products. The pair will be leading the digital transformation programme.
UK innovation is under threat because of archaic patent law
Cornwell explained that the fund offers startups the opportunity to work with a “credible and reputable brand”.
Travelex is very well placed to capitalise on the predicted growth in travel and the corresponding growth in FX and payments.
Both the investment fund and recruitment activity will enable Travelex to bring digital to the core of our offerings and customer experience.
The recruitment drive will be kicked off at this weekend’s Silicon Milkroundabout, with the company sponsoring the Bootstrapped initiative which helps startups attend the event.
The new hires will include engineering, product, UI, UX, design, marketing and testing.
With the recent investment in forex startup WeSwap and TransferWise’s potential unicorn status growth, it is safe to say that the best is yet to come for foreign exchange’s digital transformation.