In Startup Smart

A global tech company founded by Skype’s first employee and valued at $1.1 billion will set up shop in Sydney as it looks to strengthen its footing in the Asia-Pacific region.

TransferWise CEO and co-founder Taavet Hinrikus says the rapid take-up of their international money transfers platform in Australia prompted them to expand down under.

“Sydney is a great city and we’re looking forward to becoming part of the tech community,” he says.

“Since launching TransferWise here, it’s become one of our fastest-growing routes.”

New South Wales minister for trade Stuart Ayres says the government has been actively driving efforts to attract fast growing companies to the state in 10 priority markets, including fintech.

“The decision by TransferWise to establish their new home in Sydney is a huge win for New South Wales with 30 employees expected to join the new CBD office from the first half of next year,” Ayres tells StartupSmart.

“As global economic activity shifts from Europe and the United States to emerging markets across Asia, Sydney presents a safe landing zone in Asia [and] a strong launching pad with capacity to protect IP, a strong rule of law, and the opportunity to access an increasingly deep pool of talent.

“There is no doubting Sydney’s position as the nation’s fintech hub and financial capital of Australia, and TransferWise joins other high profile players in the fintech community including OnDeck, Acorns and Ripple Labs.”

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