The Singapore Fintech Festival has come and passed, and fintech company TransferWise walked away with the award for its Borderless Account product.
Beyond receiving the honour that came with the award, TransferWise also won S$150,000 in prize money.
The firm has no plans to pocket the prize, however, and announced that it will be giving away the money to Singaporean individuals and small businesses hit by hidden bank fees at home and abroad in a cross-border transaction over the past year.
Qualifying participants will receive payments via direct bank transfer of the exact amount in hidden fees charged by their bank, capped at S$500 per participant.
According to TransferWise, Singapore loses S$2 billion to hidden fees each year.
Participants qualify on a first-come, first-served basis until all S$150,000 is allocated, or until the campaign ends on 30 Nov 2019.
The campaign is open to all individuals living in Singapore, Singapore Citizens living abroad as well as Singapore-registered businesses with fewer than 50 employees.
Over the past 4 days, 260 submissions have been received and the “S$150,000 is not oversubscribed yet at the moment, and people can still apply”.
Said Mr Kristo Käärmann, Co-Founder and CEO of TransferWise: “When we buy a cup of coffee or a tray of eggs, the shop tells us exactly how much they are charging us. But when we make a cross-border transaction, banks often hide their fees in the exchange rate. It is a serious problem consumers everywhere in the world face.”
“So we have decided to use our prize money from the Singapore Fintech Festival to do our part to raise awareness about this global problem.”
Those interested have to provide relevant information via an online form that takes less than 10 minutes to complete.
If there are leftover funds from the S$150,000 prize money at the end of the campaign, TransferWise will donate the remaining funds to groups and programmes promoting financial literacy.
Participants who qualify will be notified by 31 December 2019 and paid by 31 January 2020.
- More information on the campaign can be found here: wi.se/hiddenfees.