Boston-based Fintech firm Flywire recently confirmed that it will be downsizing its operations, due to the COVID-19 outbreak and resulting economic challenges.
The payment processing firm reportedly laid off 12% of its workers (around 60 employees), according to estimates from industry participants. Flywire will also be moving around 3% of its staff members to part-time roles.
Flywire’s management noted:
“Like many companies, Flywire is putting measures in place to reduce risk to our business as a result of the disruption caused by COVID-19. Unfortunately, one of the steps we’ve been forced to take is to let go of valuable Flywire employees. This was a very difficult decision, but we know it was necessary in order to continue to deliver business as usual to the maximum extent possible to our customers throughout and well beyond the pandemic.”
Established in 2011, Flywire aims to help academic institutions, healthcare service providers, and B2B firms with transacting in foreign currencies. The company initially operated as peerTransfer back in 2009. It was launched by Spanish businessman Iker Marcaide with the aim of handling tuition payments submitted by international students to universities.
Flywire has working relationships with several American universities, including Boston University, Carnegie Mellon, and Cornell.
Flywrite notably secured $120 million in capital through a Series E investment round (in February 2020), which was led by Wall Street giant Goldman Sachs. Flywire claimed at that time that would be recruiting 100 new employees by the end of this year.
Like many other firms, Flywire has introduced various Coronavirus-related initiatives.
The company teamed up with Ivy.ai, an AI chatbot developer for health care service providers, in order to communicate digitally with patients and help them answer questions related to the highly contagious COVID-19 outbreak.
Flywire has also introduced a framework to allow universities to retain and support student enrollment efforts for the 2020-21 academic year.