Money transfers can make or break a business


Business owners who don’t keep track of the exchange rate could lose out on international transactions.

Australian businesses are not making the most of the exchange rate when they do international transactions.

According to the latest Money Transfer Comparison research, nearly two-thirds (60%) admitted they do not check the exchange rate or shop around for the best exchange rate at all.

It found that a quarter (24%) admitted that while they check exchange rates, they don’t shop around for the best rate, and only 40% indicated they check exchange rates and shop around for the best one before making payments.

Anneke van den Broek, Entrepreneurs’ Organization member and founder of Rufus & Coco, says, “As the founder of a global pet care brand operating in 12 countries, I used to wake up, and the first thing I did every day was checking the USD:AUD exchange. If I paid without checking, the loss in the currency could cost the margin on the items we are selling. Timing payments literally saved us tens of thousands.

“Terms with suppliers, however, may not mean you have the luxury of paying them when the rates are in your favour. As the business grew, to manage the currency fluctuation vs rate set in the business budget, I now hedge to reduce uncertainty and loss.”

Amelia Hamer, Director of Strategy ANZ, Airwallex (sponsors of Entrepreneurs’ Organisation), says small differences in the cost of foreign exchanges for cross-border payments can add up to big savings for small and medium-sized businesses.

“At Airwallex, we pride ourselves on making our fees and rates transparent so our customers can see everything upfront. We know how time-poor many business owners are, so we’re transparent to make it easy for people to understand what they can save on their cross-border payments costs.”


A 2019 ACCC report into the State of Foreign Exchange found that consumers lost over $150 million in 2017-2018 due to poor foreign exchange rates and charges.

Where traditionally large enterprise businesses will get favourable rates and red-carpet treatment for services such as FX, companies like Send Payments (international transfers) and Mint Payments (card acceptance and B2B payments) aim to level the playing field and solve fundamental inefficiencies within the financial landscape for SME businesses.  

James Read, Global Head of Commercial of Send Payments, says, “Send Payments was born out of the knowledge that there is a better way to tackle payments, both international and domestic, for retail customers, SMEs and large enterprises alike. The banks still own a large proportion of foreign exchange transactions globally and tend not to be able to deliver the best customer experience, rates, transparency, speed and service.”

Send offers a blend of competitive pricing and service, surfacing tools to customers that enable them to achieve a great financial return, factoring in rates and business efficiencies – all of which can be delivered via API into platforms like Mint.

“We have partnered with Mint to establish unique end-to-end payments offering for SME merchants and enterprise clients, and encapsulating businesses used to working with multiple providers for their various financial needs and allowing them to fulfil those needs under one roof.”

Alex Teoh, CEO of Mint Payments, says that the partnership with Send supports Mint’s vision of providing an end-to-end payments ecosystem, enabling SME merchants to accept customer payments and make payments to suppliers. However, they choose to pay.

“Our vision is collectively aligned to simplify the payments process and support merchants underserviced by traditional institutions. Through our strategic alliance with Send, we will ensure businesses receive the best possible solution throughout their payment journey, with full rate transparency and a simple user experience to allow merchants to take advantage of rates at the right time.”

Changes introduced to improve Heritage Bank’s international currency transfer have enabled quicker and easier ways for customers, especially business customers, to transfer money overseas. The previous process involved visiting a branch and waiting up to 48 hours for the transfer to be complete.

Now, it can all be done online and in real-time. Introduced in 2021, by 2022, Heritage Bank increased the number of money transfers overseas by 52%.

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