Phil Siarri talks to Tim Nixon, co-founder and CEO of Payment Rails, a Canadian company offering a cloud technology platform that enables businesses to send payments to any individual or company. Recently, the Payment Rails Payout API beta release was announced.
Hi Tim. Can you tell us about your background and your company, Payment Rails?
I’m an Australian. I moved to Canada in 2009 following a five-year stint in London, UK. I’ve been in the payments industry for the past six years, previously working for an e-wallet competitor of PayPal, where I headed up the operations teams supporting millions of users sending payments across 190 countries.
In mid-2015, I co-founded Payment Rails with Ferhan Patel, another payments industry veteran. We experienced first-hand the difficulties and high costs of paying contractor workers internationally, and we set out to fix that. At its core, we’re building the most powerful payout API for businesses to send payments globally. On top of that, we’ve built a user-friendly dashboard for businesses of all sizes to easily send payments at a much lower cost than through their bank.
The payments sector has become more competitive in recent times. What is Payment Rails’ unfair advantage?
We have seen competition in many sub-sectors of the payments space lately. In P2P remittances, we see very tough competition. There have been countless e-wallets launched. And in credit card processing, we see strong competition and niche players surfacing, such as those focusing on subscriptions. However, we believe there’s a huge opportunity still undeserved in the business payments space. The cross-border payments market is expected to grow to $54tn by 2022 — it’s a very fragmented market with no standout leaders who are solving the real pain points for most businesses. We see a great opportunity there.
Your target market includes freelancers, ad networks and crowdfunders, among others. What made your team decide to pursue such a wide range of potential clients?
These segments all have something in common: they all need to pay on-demand workers who are connecting on their platform or marketplace. These businesses all have similar needs and challenges when making payouts, and that’s why we’re targeting those segments with our mass payout API solution.
We believe very strongly in the future of the on-demand economy. There will be over 500 million freelance workers worldwide by 2025, and our vision is to be the best way for businesses and platforms to pay their global on-demand workforce.