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London fintech Wise recruits over 1,000 new employees as sales boom

Wise CEO Kristo Kaarman  (Handout)
Wise CEO Kristo Kaarman (Handout)

One of London’s biggest fintech companies has recruited over 1,000 new employees over the past year as it races to keep up with booming demand.

Employee headcount at money transfer business Wise has swelled 43% in the last twelve months to almost 4,000, while the firm said it was currently recruiting a further 300 roles, of which 100 are London-based.

Wise CFO Matt Briers said: “We’ve had a really good start to the year…we’re actually hiring quite fast [and] more and more customers are using our accounts to receive money and to hold money.

“A lot of the reason people use us is not discretionary so we expect this to continue.”

Wise posted a 55% boost to revenue to £397 million in the six months to September, while pre-tax profits almost trebled against last year to £51.3 million and customer numbers swelled to 5.5 million in the second quarter.

However, profit margins fell by almost 2% to 22.1%, while it expected margins to slip to around 20% over the medium-term.

“We had slightly higher margins than this time last year [but] we manage our price and charge our customers a fair price,” Briers said.

Wise shares fell 2.9% to 613p. The stock is up 56% over the past six months.

Wise’s decision to join the London Stock Exchange last year marked the largest-ever technology flotation in the UK, valuing the company at over £8 billion.

Kristo Kaarmann, the Estonian co-founder and CEO of Wise, controls an 18.2% stake in the company worth £1.1 billion, according to Refinitiv data. In June it was revealed Kaarman was under investigation by the FCA after being accused of failing to pay his taxes.