Thunes, a Singapore-based fintech startup, is setting its sights on challenging the dominance of SWIFT, the world’s leading international financial network. With a recent injection of $72 million in funding, Thunes is ramping up its efforts to revolutionize cross-border payments and expand its presence in emerging markets. The company’s proprietary infrastructure allows businesses to transfer funds to 132 countries, reaching 4 billion bank accounts and 3 billion mobile wallets. By offering a faster and more cost-effective alternative to SWIFT, Thunes is positioning itself as a game-changer in the global payments landscape.
Thunes’ CEO, Peter De Caluwe, has a bold vision for the future of cross-border payments. He envisions a world where treasurers and CFOs choose to wire money through Thunes rather than SWIFT. With the recent influx of funding from major players such as Visa, EDBI, and Marshall Wace, Thunes is poised to challenge SWIFT’s dominance and revolutionize the way businesses transfer funds internationally.
Thunes’ value proposition lies in its ability to provide cost-effective and efficient cross-border payments to businesses operating in emerging economies. Unlike SWIFT, which primarily serves the banking network, Thunes reaches unbanked populations in countries like Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Nigeria, and Pakistan. By leveraging its proprietary money-moving infrastructure, Thunes reduces costs by up to 90% compared to traditional SWIFT transfers and settles most transactions within 30 minutes.
Thunes has already established itself as a key player in the cross-border payments space, with an impressive roster of clients and strategic partnerships. Leading fintech companies such as PayPal and Revolut, as well as major players like Grab and the Commercial Bank of Dubai, rely on Thunes’ infrastructure for their international payments. Thunes has also formed a strategic partnership with Tencent, allowing money transfers to users of the popular WeChat superapp in China.
Recognizing the immense potential of the Chinese market, Thunes is actively expanding its presence in China. With the establishment of a local subsidiary and plans to obtain necessary licenses, Thunes aims to tap into the world’s largest mobile payments market. The company believes that the scale of opportunities in China is unparalleled, with significant growth expected in the coming years.
While Thunes has made significant strides in the cross-border payments market, it still handles a fraction of the volume processed by SWIFT. However, with the projected growth in cross-border payments and the increasing adoption of digital wallets, Thunes is well-positioned to capture a larger market share. CEO Peter De Caluwe expects Thunes to process $20 billion to $25 billion in transactions in the next 12 months, with annual transaction growth estimated to be between 50% and 75% over the next decade.
Thunes’ partnership with EDBI, Singapore’s government investment vehicle, highlights the support the company has received from the local fintech ecosystem. EDBI sees Thunes as an emerging leader in cross-border payments and a critical part of Singapore’s fintech landscape. The company’s commitment to growing from Singapore further solidifies its position as a key player in the global fintech arena.
Thunes’ ambition to disrupt SWIFT’s dominance in the cross-border payments space is backed by impressive funding and a strong value proposition. With its cost-effective and efficient infrastructure, Thunes is positioning itself as a viable alternative to traditional SWIFT transfers, particularly in emerging markets. As the company expands its presence in China and continues to onboard new customers, it has the potential to reshape the global payments landscape and become a key player in the fintech industry.
1. What is Thunes? Thunes is a Singapore-based fintech startup that aims to disrupt the dominance of SWIFT, the world’s leading international financial network, by providing cost-effective and efficient cross-border payment solutions.
2. How does Thunes differ from SWIFT? Unlike SWIFT, which primarily serves the banking network, Thunes allows businesses to pay out to 132 countries across 4 billion bank accounts and 3 billion mobile wallets. Thunes reduces costs by up to 90% compared to SWIFT transfers and settles most transactions within 30 minutes.
3. Who are Thunes’ major clients? Thunes’ major clients include leading fintech companies PayPal and Revolut, Southeast Asian ride-hailing and delivery giant Grab, as well as the Commercial Bank of Dubai and M-Pesa, one of Africa’s most popular mobile money platforms.
4. What is Thunes’ expansion strategy? Thunes is actively expanding its presence in China, the world’s largest mobile payments market. The company has formed a strategic partnership with Tencent and aims to obtain local licenses and double its team in China.
5. What is Thunes’ future outlook? CEO Peter De Caluwe expects Thunes to process $20 billion to $25 billion in transactions in the next 12 months, with annual transaction growth estimated to be between 50% and 75% over the next decade. The company aims to capture a larger market share in the rapidly growing cross-border payments industry.
6. How does Thunes contribute to Singapore’s fintech ecosystem? Thunes is a key player in Singapore’s fintech ecosystem, with support from EDBI, Singapore’s government investment vehicle. The company is committed to growing from Singapore, further solidifying its position as an emerging leader in cross-border payments.
First reported by Forbes.