The Wise story

Wise started in 2011 when our founders, Taavet and Kristo, realised how much banks were ripping them off.

How it all began

Like a lot of good stories, this one starts with two friends (and they’re both from Estonia!)

Taavet was the first employee at Skype and got paid in euros. But he lived in London and needed pounds to pay the bills. 

Kristo worked for Deloitte and lived in London. He got paid in pounds. But he had a mortgage back in Estonia. And he needed to pay that in euros.

Every month they moved their money abroad through banks. It was wasting them time and costing them money. So they invented a beautifully simple workaround that became a billion-dollar business.

TransferWise story

They found a better way

Each month, they looked up the exchange rate on Reuters. Taavet then put his euros into Kristo’s Estonian bank account, and Kristo topped up Taavet’s UK bank account using his pounds. Both got the currency they needed almost instantly, and neither paid an extra cent through bad exchange rates or unreasonable charges.

There was no waiting, no stress, and no extra costs. ‘There must be others just like us…’ they thought. The rest is Wise.

A memory wall of the Wise story so far
Founders of Wise, Kristo Käärmann and Taavet Hinrikus

Wise today

Over 16 million happy customers now use Wise to move more than £9 billion a month, saving themselves £3 million a day compared to using a bank.

We’ve added the multi-currency account, which lets you hold 50+ currencies at once and convert them whenever you like, and the Wise debit Mastercard.

We now have over 5,000 people working in 17 countries across 4 continents. Apart from all that, not too much has changed.

We’re not done yet

We’re really just at the beginning of our story and we’re growing at an incredible pace. We won’t stop until anyone, anywhere can send, spend and receive money wherever they are, whatever they’re doing.

There’s still heaps to do and we can’t do it alone.

Join us.

The whole Wise team together at a company event