Disrupting money changers

By | CYH

Ideas are cheap. Execution matters.

I have plenty of ideas but I can only execute one at any one time.

There’s a recent development that made me revisit one of the ideas I had in the past.

The idea was to create a platform to enable users to exchange foreign currencies among themselves, without the need to go to a money changer and lose the spread. I envisioned it like the Carousell model but the problem was that it would be hard to monetise.

Subsequently I learned about RateX which besides the coupon code function, it started off allowing online shoppers to convert the currency to SGD before they make payment. This would eliminate the notorious poor exchange rates offered by the banks. This idea is better because the business can make money off it since all transactions have to flow through the platform. Secondly, it is more convenient and scaleable without the physical meetups between users.

Recently, this exchange rate business evolved further. Companies like Revolution, Transferwise and YouTrip created their own debit cards to facilitate cross-border payments with favourable exchange rates. These cards allow you use it overseas or do online payments in foreign currencies. This idea is so much better than my original one and RateX’s.

Even in tech disruption era, evolution happens most of the time rather than a sudden revolution.

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