While some of us are still getting over our New Year’s Eve hangover we have our first major product announcement of the year.
HSBC has announced Zing, a new retail-focused service offering inexpensive foreign exchange.
The large banks. particularly in Europe, have mainly looked on with envy as startups like Wise and Revolut have built large businesses on the back of offering cheap foreign exchange to tens of millions of retail customers.
All the while they are eating into a product that at one time was a major profit earner for banks. But many (most?) people who have had serious foreign exchange needs have long ago switched to one of the fintech platforms.
Can HSBC play catch-up? It is certainly not going to be easy with the fintechs now well-established incumbents when it comes to retail foreign exchange.
And what about that name? I agree with Simon Taylor’s take. Zing evokes a bad joke, not cutting-edge financial technology.
Zing will launch in the UK and will be on the Apple and Google app stores within days. Other countries will follow.
The head of Zing made it clear they have big ambitions: “We want to establish ourselves as a global platform for international payments.”
HSBC Holdings Plc is set to debut an international payments app aimed at directly challenging the dominance of fintechs like Revolut and Wise Plc that have gathered tens of millions of retail customers by offering cheap foreign exchange.
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Peter Renton is the chairman and co-founder of Fintech Nexus, the world’s largest digital media company focused on fintech. Peter has been writing about fintech since 2010 and he is the author and creator of the Fintech One-on-One Podcast, the first and longest-running fintech interview series.