March 16 (SeeNews) - French payment services provider iBanFirst expects to double its transaction volume recorded last year in Romania, aiming for 1.4 billion euro ($1.48 billion) in 2023, country manager Alin Latu told SeeNews.
The company increased its client portfolio threefold last year, to 300 clients at end-2022, Alin Latu said in a SeeNews interview.
"More specifically, the Romanian office traded more than 700 million euro for its clients last year and it is currently on track to double it in 2023. This will be achieved with a local team of 20 consultants who should be onboarding an average of 30 new users per month," Latu explained.
In the medium term, the company aims to transform its Bucharest office into a regional hub for Eastern Europe, which would require it to have all the necessary infrastructure for the platform's operation, Latu said.
After almost one and a half years of doing business in Romania, iBanFirst reached a client base of 300 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and a local team of 15.
"[...] geopolitical factors have caused currency volatility and market instability, leading many companies to become more conscious of their exposure to currency risks. Consequently, instruments related to currency risk hedging were highly demanded during this period," he said.
iBanFirst provides businesses with an alternative banking solution which allows them to open multiple accounts in over 30 currencies online, through its platform.
Speed and efficiency in cross-border payments give fintech companies an edge over traditional banks, according to Latu. "Secondly, fintech companies typically offer lower transaction fees and better exchange rates than traditional banks. This can result in significant cost savings for businesses, especially those that need to make frequent or large cross-border payments," he explained.
iBanFirst was established in 2013 and is currently headquartered in Belgium. The company operates as a regulated financial institution and serves thousands of customers across Europe. It allows companies to control all aspects of their foreign currency transactions, such as exchange, transfer, hedging, and cash management.