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10 cross-border payments fintechs you should know about in 2023

10 fintech companies that are building on existing payment rails and blockchains to enable better cross-border payments.

By
Mar 20, 2024
4 min read

Introduction

The world of cross-border payments is changing. The incumbent methods – bank-to-bank networks such as Swift and SEPA, and credit card networks (eg Visa, Mastercard, Amex) that ultimately leverage the same infrastructure – can leave businesses frustrated. Settlement times can be slow, costly and carry opaque processing fees, while millions of businesses and people around the world are excluded from banking and payment services. All this has a profound impact on cash flow and limits growth. 

In the last decade, a new breed of fintechs have emerged to solve the shortcomings of these traditional cross-border payments and settlement systems. Some are innovating on top of existing rails; others are using new technology such as blockchains to build completely separate payment infrastructure. 

BVNK has selected 10 cross-border fintech companies that are leading the way, and that we think your business should know about. We’ve split these into fintechs that are building on existing payment rails, and fintechs using blockchain rails, either exclusively or in conjunction with existing payment rails. They are: 

Fintechs using existing rails:
Airwallex
Corpay
Ebury
Nium
Rapyd
Wise

Fintechs using blockchains:
BVNK
Circle
Ripple
Stellar

Among the fintechs using blockchain rails, there are broadly 4 types of provider:

  • Provider owns blockchain and offers a native token - eg Ripple/XRP
  • Provider owns blockchain but is token agnostic - eg Stellar
  • Provider is blockchain agnostic but has a native token - eg Circle/USDC
  • Provider is blockchain agnostic and token agnostic - eg BVNK

Airwallex

Founded: 2015
Headquarters:
Melbourne, Australia
Employees:
1,200 people, 19 international offices
Annual payment volume:
$50bn
Payment infrastructure:
Proprietary banking networks 

Main services: 

  • Multi-currency account 
  • International money transfer with FX conversion
  • Payment links
  • Multi-currency expense cards for employees
  • Embedded finance services, including bank account, card issuing and end-to-end payments 

Software integrations: Shopify, eBay, Amazon, Xero
Customers:
HubSpot, Qantas, Plum

What they say: “Airwallex’s proprietary local payments network offers you a faster, more cost-effective, and transparent alternative to legacy banking. Operate like a local business from anywhere in the world - open local currency accounts in minutes online, accept payments in local currency to avoid costly forced conversion fees, hold funds in a multi-currency wallet, convert currencies at interbank rates, and make high-speed transfers around the world in a few clicks.

Website: airwallex.com 

Accelerate cross-border payments

Settle funds anywhere in less than 24 hours and trade seamlessly between currencies with BVNK's Global Settlement Network.
Explore Global Settlement

Corpay

Founded: 2009
Headquarters: Atlanta, US
Employees: c. 1,500 people across 33 offices
Annual payment volume: $73.7bn
Payment infrastructure: Existing banking networks 

Main services: 

  • Payments including batch processing
  • Currency risk management including forward contracts and limit orders
  • Automatic invoice reconciliation 

Software integrations: Quickbooks, Xero, Zapier
Customers:
WTA (Women’s Tennis Association, Treasury Suite, GeoBlue

What they say: “Keep your global competitive edge with comprehensive solutions for cross-border payments and currency risk management. Our world-class trading platform and integrated payment solutions can be customised to your unique business requirements.”

Website: corpay.com

Ebury 

Founded: 2009
Headquarters: London, UK
Employees:
c. 1,500 people across 32 offices
Annual payment volume: $21bn 
Payment infrastructure: Existing banking networks 

Main services: 

  • Multi-currency accounts
  • Payments including batch processing
  • FX risk management
  • Whitelabel platform 

Software integrations: NetSuite, Salesforce CRM
Customers:
Kriya, TopSource Worldwide, ABN Australia

What they say: “Pay and get paid worldwide with ease, speed and security. Ebury offers integrated payment solutions to help you pay, receive and manage your overseas cash flows — all in one place.”

Website: ebury.com

Nium

Founded: 2014
Headquarters: Singapore
Employees: c.750
Annual payment volume: $25bn
Payment infrastructure: Existing banking networks + third-party blockchains

Main services: 

  • Multi-currency account
  • Money transfer (payments and payouts)
  • Corporate payment cards (physical and virtual)

Customers: Moneycorp, Paycell, Etraveli Group 

What they say: “Move money around the world — from APAC to LATAM, from EMEA to North America, from capital cities to emerging markets. Our direct bank relationships enable nearly all transactions on the Nium network to be settled in real-time.”

Website: nium.com 

Rapyd 

Founded: 2016
Headquarters: London, UK
Employees: c. 270
Annual payment volume: $20bn
Payment infrastructure: Existing banking and card networks

Main services: 

  • Payment API including hosted checkout
  • Payment links
  • Virtual accounts and  multi-currency wallet
  • Pre-funded cards for purchases, ATM withdrawals and payouts
     

Software integrations: Magento, Shopify, Wix
Customers:
Kontempo, Kadmos, Gotrade

What they say: “There’s a massive need to give companies a way to grow globally and create fintech applications. This led Rapyd to launch a Global Payments Network and Fintech Platform to provide a full stack of integrated payments, commerce and financial services capabilities that can be embedded into any application.”

Website: rapyd.net

Wise

Founded: 2011
Headquarters: London, UK
Employees: 5,000 people, 17 countries
Annual payment volume: $76.4bn
Payment infrastructure: Existing banking networks 

Main services: 

  • P2P remittance/money transfer and travel debit card
  • Multi-currency business account covering 55+ currencies
  • Business debit and expense cards
  • Batch payments for upto 1,000 payments at once
  • Embedded finance services, including treasury management and money transfer


Software integrations:
Xero, QuickBooks, FreeAgent
Customers:
16m individuals + corporate clients including Monzo, Bolt, GoCardless 

What they say: “Sending money shouldn’t cost the earth, so we built Wise to save you money when you transfer and exchange internationally. We charge as little as possible: right now a tiny fee, eventually free.”

Website: wise.com

BVNK

OK, we couldn’t have a top 10 list of cross-border fintech companies and not include ourselves! But honestly, we do think we deserve our place here. We are trusted by hundreds of businesses globally to process billions of dollars in payments every year. We bridge distributed ledger technology with traditional payments infrastructure to enable businesses to send and receive payments anywhere in the world. For example, our customers can accept cryptocurrency from their customers without having to hold it on their balance sheet, and embed cryptocurrency and stablecoin solutions into their products and services without needing to become regulated. 

Founded: 2021
Headquarters: London, UK
Employees: c.250 people across three global offices
Payment volume:
2.5bn annual transactions processed in 2022
Payment infrastructure: Third party blockchains and token, API payments platform, trading desk, global network of bank and liquidity partners

Services: 

  • DLT Payments: send and receive digital assets without making changes to your treasury operations (includes hosted payment page and payment links)
  • Global Settlement Network: cross-border payments and currency exchange (including fiat to fiat, crypto to fiat, fiat to crypto, and crypto to crypto)
  • Virtual Accounts: dedicated virtual accounts with sort codes for UK payments and IBANs for EU accounts.
  • Embedded Payments: regulatory-wrapped, white-label payment solutions

Customers: More than 300 global businesses including Ebury, The Pavillions, Greenburg, Livitpay, Deriv

What we say: “By bridging traditional payment systems with distributed ledger technology, we've created modern rails for moving money. Using our platform, businesses can send and receive payments anywhere in the world.”

Website: bvnk.com

Circle

Founded: 2013
Headquarters: Boston, US
Employees: c. 1,100
Payment volume: $10tr in transactions since launch, $4bn daily trading volume (USDC only)
Payment infrastructure: Blockchain and native tokens (USDC, EuroCoin)

Main services: 

  • USDC & EuroCoin (stablecoins)
  • Payments
  • Liquidity
  • Treasury management
  • Web3 developer services (ie custody, smart contracts, ID verification)

Customers: Crypto.com, BCB Group

What they say: “USDC is a faster, safer, and more efficient way to send, spend, and exchange money around the globe. USDC powers apps to provide anytime access to payments and financial services.”

Website: circle.com

Ripple Labs

Founded: 2012
Headquarters: San Francisco, US
Employees: 800 across 15 countries
Payment volume: $30bn worth of volume and 20m transactions since launch
Payment infrastructure: Blockchain and native currency (XRP)

Main services: 

  • Payments
  • Cryptocurrency liquidity
  • Digital asset management
  • Private ledger for issuance and administration of stablecoins and CBDCs

Customers: Novatti, Azimo, Modulr

What they say: “Using proven crypto and blockchain technology honed over a decade, Ripple’s enterprise-grade solutions are faster, more transparent, and more cost-effective than traditional financial services. Our customers use these solutions to source crypto, facilitate instant payments, empower their treasury, engage new audiences, lower capital requirements, and drive new revenue.”

Website: ripple.com

Stellar (Stellar Development Foundation)

Founded: 2014
Headquarters: San Francisco, US
Employees: c. 200
Payment volume: 345m payments made since launch
Payment infrastructure: Blockchain (opensource) + native currency (Lumens/XLM) for minimum balance requirements and pay transactions fees + third-party tradeable tokens, often linked to fiat currencies but in theory representable of any form of value (ie asset, property, time.) 

Main services: 

  • Payments
  • Developer tools for building whitelabel services


Software integrations: mainly with digital currency businesses (eg exchanges, wallets, smart contract platforms)
Customers:
MoneyGram, Coinqvest, Von Der Hydt

What they say: “On Stellar, you can create, send, and trade digital representations of all forms of value. It’s designed so all the world’s financial systems can freely interoperate with each other, all on a single network. What makes Stellar unique compared to other blockchains is its ability to connect to real-world endpoints, enabling people to convert their digital assets into something they can actually spend.”

Website: stellar.org

Unlock faster settlement with distributed ledger technology

Settle funds anywhere in less than 24 hours and trade seamlessly between currencies with BVNK's Global Settlement Network.
Explore Global Settlement
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