Wise (TransferWise) launches new foreign exchange solution for Australian businesses and opens its API

Posted: 27 November 2018 10:08 am

The new Wise for Business product supports 45 currencies and is up to 14 times cheaper than PayPal.

If you're doing business overseas, there's now a cheaper option for you. Wise for Business is a multi-currency account supporting 45 currencies that has direct integration with Xero.

How does it work?

You get a multi-currency account and local bank details to accounts in the UK, Europe, the US, New Zealand and Australia. This lets you transfer money in and out of these accounts fast and like a local.

You can keep this money in your account for payments in the future or you can move it back to your own bank account.

A major bonus with Wise is it uses the mid-market rate and doesn't add a margin on top. The mid-market rate is what you'll see on Google or XE. Banks and a lot of money transfer services then pad this exchange rate with a margin for profit.

CEO and co-founder of TranserWise Taavet Hinrikus says, "Banks and PayPal have been getting away with massively overcharging their business customers."

"The reality is these are often small companies and freelancers who can't afford to be stung by sneaky charges each time they transact in a foreign currency."

Xero integration

You can also connect Xero with your Wise account. Xero is an online accounting software that's aimed at small businesses. This integration will let you keep track of your payments, even if they're in multiple currencies, by automatically importing transactions into Xero.

Integrating with Xero won't cost you anything extra.

Opening up its API

Wise is also opening up its API to the public, which will let other businesses integrate it into their website or app. This means you can use it to automate recurring transfers like a payroll or invoice payments.

Even banks will be able to connect to the API to offer cheaper foreign exchange solutions to customers, all powered by Wise.

To give you an idea of what an open API can do, YouTube has one of the most widely used ones, allowing other websites and apps to embed their videos. Wise has opened up the doors to its technology for others to use and build on it for their own business uses.

Cheaper transfers

Wise also conducted research which found sending money through PayPal is 14 times more expensive. Take a $2,000 transfer to the US, for example. The research found PayPal to cost you $71.97 to send, plus the receiver was up for US$60.57.

The same transfer through Wise would cost you $11.05. While PayPal is one of the most well-known options, it pays to compare all your options.

According to 2018 data from the World Bank, Australia already sits above the global average for money transfer fees out of G20 countries, beaten only by Japan and South Africa.

Hinrikus also says, "The infrastructure we've built can help people do more than just transfer money. It can help them manage their international finances completely differently, giving them more freedom and control."

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