Q&A with Kevin von Neuschatz, Group CEO, Stanhope Financial Group
By Kevin von Neuschatz, Group CEO of Stanhope Financial Group
In a special interview, Global Banking and Finance Review spoke with Kevin von Neuschatz, Group CEO, Stanhope Financial Group, a new fintech company offering tier one banking services to SMEs around the globe.
What does Stanhope Financial Group do?
Stanhope Financial Group is a new fintech company that offers a suite of banking services including FX, treasury services and digital access to ‘cash’ investment instruments, for small and medium sized enterprises, which have largely been neglected by the traditional big banks who were once their customers.
We are registered in Dublin, Ireland, and have just launched the company with 10 full time staff including entrepreneurs and financial experts. In my previous role, I was Managing Director of Small World Financial, and now as Group CEO of Stanhope, I’ll be working alongside Capital Markets specialist Khalid Talukder, previously of UBS, Citi & Deutsche.
Stanhope Financial Group already has agreements with several new clients across the world, with that number set to grow exponentially over the following year.
Our key service offering will include dedicated local relationships in key markets, aggregation of payments and foreign exchange services as well as consultancy and e-banking industry expertise.
The specific financial support we will offer includes treasury management investment solutions and global transaction banking, providing clients access to global payments services, payment schemes such as SEPA and deliverable foreign exchange services and financing opportunities
Why did you create Stanhope Financial Group?
Following the global financial crisis of 2007-08, banks universally pulled back from offering transactional banking and investment opportunities to small and mid-market enterprises, especially in developing markets due to their lending parameters being revised and their risk appetite. As a result, existing global MMEs and SMEs struggled to stay afloat, thousands have been forced to close their doors for good, and many more have struggled to merely get off the ground.
And, just when the banks looked as though they had recovered enough to start reintroducing these services, the world was hit by Covid-19, forcing the economy into a recession once again, and causing traditional banks to retreat.
As a result, we decided to create a fintech company that could leverage cutting edge technology to digitise access to tier one banking services for neglected enterprises in need of them.
What/who inspired you to create Stanhope Financial Group?
We took inspiration from previous start-up fintech companies which, against all odds, have managed to successfully disrupt the market by showing consumers that traditional banking institutions aren’t the only option for financial services.
This includes Starling Bank, which, began by picking up clients that ‘the big six’ didn’t find profitable, and have now developed into a market-leading competitor.
We were also inspired by some of the SMEs in emerging markets which just do not have the support needed to become as successful as they should be, and felt they must be given the outlet to develop, flourish, and eventually support their own economy.
How has Covid-19 impacted your offering?
As previously alluded to, Covid-19 has created an extremely desperate situation for millions of businesses on a worldwide scale. The global economy has, and will continue to be, exceptionally volatile over the coming months, and businesses will struggle to acquire any financial support, including treasury services, investment advice, and funding services, which is often needed at the best of times in order to aid, support or encourage SMEs and MMEs to succeed.
Our service has therefore been established with Covid-19 in mind. Our staff of leading experts can offer investment advice, and provide a tailor-made solution to each client in order to help them navigate volatile markets, difficult circumstances and complicated financial situations.
Do you have any plans for future growth or development?
In the next few weeks, we will be launching specialist on-the-ground subsidiary companies in Dubai, in order to better service the UAE, Asia, and African markets with investment products and solutions.
We will also be launching in Lithuania in the near future, serving European customers in global payments and FX. Furthermore, In the coming months, we have plans to apply for a license to operate in the UK and other key markets.
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