French Startup takes on Currency Exchange, Transfer Markets


Andrew Rosenbaum
Senior Content Specialist
Andrew Rosenbaum has been a financial journalist for more than 15 years. He has worked for Euromoney, Institutional Investor, Time magazine, MSN Money and the Wall Street Journal before joining… Read more
  • French startup money transfer and forex firm Ditto will launch on February 15 bringing further innovation to these markets.
  • Ditto will be available on smartphone and tablet, and it won’t have any physical branches.
  • The new service, based in Boulogne-Billancourt (outside Paris) is targeting 10,000 customers by the end of the year in France and abroad.

Why ‘Ditto?’ The bank’s principle is that all Ditto Bank customers have the same easy access to banking products and services, no matter the currencies involved. But the new fintech firm is licenced by and regulated by the Banque de France, so customer funds are safe.

Ditto has been two years in the making, according to the company spokesperson, and now employs 60 people.  It is intended as a “bank for multi-currency people,” expats, travellers, people who work abroad regularly, etc.

There is a monthly fee of 9.99 euros, for which the consumer gets an account in euros linked to an  Android or IOS app and a pre-pay Mastercard. These enable payments in a variety of currencies at no charge. The customer has only a few clicks to add an account in dollars, pounds or whatever currency that is required.

The customer can receive international transfers of foreign currency at no cost, and keep them on the account without having to change them into euros. If the customer then wishes to convert  currencies, Ditto promises to apply the "average market exchange rate" plus an additional one per cent commission.

Customers can also make transfers from the mobile apps. Fees on transfers, according to the spokesperson, will be extremely competitive.   

Ditto was started with investor capital – the company raised 30 million euros from shareholders including the Indian billionaire Bavaguthu Shetty. - Ditto will not be profitable for several years, however, the spokesperson admits.

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