Allied Irish Banks invests €30m in payments fintech firm Transfermate

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Fintech is forcing banks into blue-sky thinking (Source: Getty)

Allied Irish Banks (AIB) has invested €30m in (£27m) in business-to-business international payments start-up Transfermate, it will announce today.

The investment could value Transfermate at between €250m to €300m, sources said.

The firm aims to take a chunk of the massive cross-border international payments market. Most big payments are currently carried out using the Swift network of international banks.

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However, these can be costly and time-consuming for firms, attracting intense competition from a plethora of start-ups including Transferwise, Stripe and Adyen, amongst others.

The fintech firm was only started in 2010 by chief executive Terry Clune, and includes London football club West Ham United among its customers.

Firms can make payments internationally as well as taking receivables in the customer’s own currency using a network of accounts in 200 countries. Transfermate claims it is currently the only payments company which will be fully regulated throughout the EU and the US, where it is regulated in every state.

The firm employs 165 staff, including at its headquarters in Kilkenny, Ireland, and offices in the US, Europe and as far afield as Australia.

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Colin Hunt, an AIB managing director, said “AIB is delighted to be backing this Irish digital payments provider, which is providing an innovative product to an international market.”

Competition in some of the most lucrative parts of its business has forced the traditional banking sector to devote more resources towards fintech. AIB runs its a "Discovery Programme" to try to identify and incubate promising opportunities.

Clune said: “This partnership is a great example of how a leading bank and a fintech company can work together to improve their customers’ experiences.”

Read more: Fintech could be risky if banks don't cooperate, say top central bankers

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