Inter (B3: BIDI11), a Brazilian super app, offering financial and non-financial services to more than 16 million customers, announced it received all authorisations in both the US and Brazil to acquire 100 per cent of USEND, a US fintech specialising in offering financial and non-financial services to a growing client base of more than 150,000 customers across 40 states. Read on for an exclusive Q&A with Inter’s CEO João Vitor Menin.
USEND’s digital money transfer platform lets users make international transactions securely and quickly through the app. The services are currently available for transfers originating in the United States, Brazil and Canada, to more than 60 destination countries.
USEND also offers an American digital account for both individuals and companies to make transfers in US Dollars quickly, safely and 100 per cent online, and processes payments from several international platforms in Brazil, such as: Payoneer, Google, Airbnb, Hotmart, Taboola, TripAdvisor, Udemy and more.
With this acquisition, Inter will accelerate and strengthen its position as a new player among US fintechs, bringing additional products and services to digital clients globally. The plan is to roll out Inter’s Super App capabilities and products to US clients, including the marketplace and cashback, serving as a hub to all the needs they may have in a world without borders.
“Our digital account will allow the client to buy its air ticket, transfer US dollars to the international account and pay its expenses in the trip, all in a single app. And these are just the first steps. Our planning includes an international account for US residents that is scheduled to be launched in the second semester” stated Inter’s CEO, João Vitor Menin.
The integration of the two companies will result on having an Inter platform that offers both financial and non-financial products to immigrant clients living abroad, Brazilian clients wanting to access international products, and the US population in general seeking to gain the benefits from a Super App.
One important differential is the safety offered by this solution. Both Inter and USEND are regulated financial institutions in their countries of origin, which offers superior governance and end-to-end security to all transactions.
Inter ended 2021 with 16.3 million clients and with NPS score of 83 points, in the excellence zone. The marketplace reached nearly $700million in GMV in 2021, up 200 per cent when compared to 2020, with 2.7 million active clients and a recurrence index of 72 per cent.
Following the announcement, The Fintech Times sat down with João Vitor Menin, CEO at Inter, to find out about Inter’s plans for the future and what inspired the acquisition:
What made Inter want to acquire USEND?
JVM: USEND is considered by Inter a perfect match to speed up its entrance in the US market and accelerate the process of becoming a full global digital platform. USEND has a strong local presence and experience in the US market; it is a regulated financial institution with licenses to operate in 40+ states (and soon in all US states); their technology is ready to scale; and they have a solid management team with a strong fit to Inter’s culture.
In addition, both platforms can immediately be integrated, as USEND can offer international accounts for Inter’s Brazilian clients and, at the same time, Inter’s Super App capabilities and products, such as the marketplace and cashback, can be rolled out to US clients.
How can this acquisition and Inter’s technology propel financial inclusion in Latin America?
JVM: We believe that the story we’ve been writing in Brazil regarding financial inclusion and simplifying people’s lives does not have to stay restricted to Brazilian residents. Inter was a pionner in Brazil in offering more affordable and agile banking, and we are proud to say we currently have clients in each and every municipality of this huge country that is Brazil. Therefore, as part of going global with our business model, USEND’s acquisition will be an enabler and act as an accelerator to include more clients and geographies into our ecosystem, enabling them to bank in a more affordable and agile way. The US is just the first step.
How does a US stock exchange vary from a Brazilian one? Why does Inter want to be listed on NASDAQ?
JVM: We have been listed in B3, the Brazilian stock exchange, since 2018. Throughout this time, we were able to establish an excellent investor base, which includes Brazilian and foreign investors. But our goal now is to reposition Inter as a global player and replicate its successful business model in several other countries, starting with the United States. The listing of shares on NASDAQ will give Inter access to the largest capital market in the world, allowing us to increase our investment capacity and growth in all business lines under a more efficient capital structure and greater liquidity. It will also enable the participation in future expansion opportunities in international markets, such as acquisition of strategic assets, consolidation and business combinations. In addition, we want to be listed next to global players, giving us more comparable peers, which in turn allows us to be properly valued.