Wise Expands into the Philippines, Appoints New Independent Director

Wise, the UK-based Fintech stealth bank that was formerly known as TransferWise, has officially expanded its operations into the Philippines with the launch of Wise Pilipinas.

In a significant move to bolster its board, Wise Pilipinas has welcomed Isabel Ridad, founder of Monetize, as its Independent Director and Chairman.

Since its inception in 2011 by Kristo Käärmann and Taavet Hinrikus, Wise said it has revolutionized the way cross-border payments are made.

Catering to over 16 million users worldwide, the company facilitates approximately £9 billion in transactions monthly, offering services that allow individuals and businesses to hold, move, and spend money in over 40 currencies across more than 80 countries.

The transition to Wise Pilipinas marks a new chapter for the fintech giant in Southeast Asia. As of September 20, 2023, Wise’s services in the Philippines are now fully operational under local regulations.

This change introduces a value-added tax on transaction fees for users with a Philippine registered address, ensuring compliance with the country’s financial laws.

Isabel Ridad’s appointment comes with a wealth of experience in the fintech sector. Prior to joining Wise Pilipinas, Ridad led Monetize, a fintech venture that aims to transform the SME sector with its AI Business Assistant, Nexa.

Monetize offers a comprehensive platform for business operations, including accounting, expense management, tax, and payroll, catering to the needs of SMEs in the digital age.

Ridad’s career also includes a significant tenure as the acting CEO of PayMongo, where she played a pivotal role in securing $31 million during the company’s Series B funding round.

Her continued involvement with PayMongo as a board member, alongside her advisory role at Tookitaki, underscores her deep expertise and influence in the fintech industry.

Wise’s expansion into the Philippines under the guidance of Isabel Ridad signifies a strategic move to enhance its service offerings and deepen its footprint in the Asian market, promising a new era of financial solutions for its users in the region.

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