Startup Spotlight on Jessal Shah, co-founder of Mayfair FX

We dined with Jessal Shah at our last FinTech dinner. He is co-founder of Mayfair FX. We wanted to find out more about him and his business.

Mayfair FX - Founders

What’s the elevator pitch for your startup?

Mayfair FX is the result of a vision by two brothers to change the Foreign Exchange industry and tackle the issue of price, transparency and quality of service.

For generations FX margins have been hidden from businesses and personal clients resulting in higher transaction fees. We believe this is not fair!

Using technology Mayfair FX is able to offer low, competitive and fair FX margins. Most important, we are transparent with our pricing. We treat businesses the same i.e. the same FX margin will be applied to businesses that transact the same amount of currency, unlike banks or brokers that usually decide the FX margin individually for each client.

Currently, in the UK alone there are over 110,000 importing and exporting SMEs with over $100bn daily average FX turnover by non-financial UK companies. We believe we are in the perfect position to assist this market by helping reduce their costs thus enabling them to grow further.

Since officially launching in April 2014 we have been growing, helped by our online marketing and strengthening our referral network. Some of our current clients include clothing manufacturers, pharmaceutical wholesalers, recruitment consultants, travel agents and a range of UK start-ups.

What were you doing before you launched your startup?

Jessal spent over 5 years at HSBC in the FX Sales looking after Corporate & Commercial clients. Miraj was studying Mathematics with Engineering at the University of Nottingham and then went on to achieve a Masters at Cass Business School in Mathematical Trading and Finance.

Where did you meet your co-founders?

We’re brothers, so I guess when we were born!

What’s your biggest ‘hindsight’ moment?

Realising we should have started earlier, we could have begun helping businesses sooner.

What will 2014 bring?

We are looking to continue spreading the word and maintain the rapid grow. We are already planning phase 2 of the platform with more tools for businesses.

1 piece of advice for someone starting a business in the sector?

Believe in your idea and do not be scared of the competition

Convince someone to use your product/service in under 50 words.

We offer low, consistent and fair pricing on your currency transfers and international payments. We display our pricing on our website which banks and FX brokers traditionally have not done so. So you know how competitive we are, we openly display the mid-market rate when you make a transfer.

What’s your favourite startup in the sector (not including your own)?

Transferwise – Althought they concentrate on the personal remittance market they have had an explosive growth, built great momentum and raised huge sums of money from the likes of Richard Branson.

What’s your favourite London restaurant?

YauatchaGreat food and great restaurant

Mayfair FX - LogoIf you want to find out more about TableCrowd dinners, go here.

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