YouTrip sets sights on Southeast Asian expansion

Photo: Bangkok Post.

Southeast Asian fintech giant YouTrip is gearing up for regional expansion, backed by a successful funding round that raised US$50 million (1.84 billion baht). The round witnessed participation from new investors, including global venture capital firm Lightspeed.

This Singapore-based multi-currency digital payments platform has managed to amass over US$100 million (3.68 billion baht) in funding since its inception. The newly injected funds will be channelled towards ramping up the company’s product technology, specifically generative artificial intelligence.

YouTrip is also planning to bolster its regional team by hiring over 100 new employees as it prepares to roll out its services in new markets such as Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam.

An imminent change on the horizon is YouTrip’s transition from a physical card to a cardless service. The YouTrip card, a digital wallet debit card, was introduced to individual consumers and businesses in Singapore in 2018, and later in Thailand in 2019 through a partnership with Kasikornbank.

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The company has shown resilience in the face of the pandemic, making a swift recovery as travel in Southeast Asia, particularly Singapore, resumed. In May last year, YouTrip launched YouBiz, a corporate card and spend management platform designed for small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), in response to the growing adoption of digital financial services.

YouBiz has successfully onboarded over 3,000 enterprises in its first year and plans to double this number by next year. Digital payment transactions via YouBiz currently constitute 80% of YouTrip’s total transactions.

Pandemic Period

The post-pandemic period has seen a significant improvement in cross-border travel and trade, resulting in increased transactions on both YouTrip and YouBiz platforms. Since its inception, YouTrip has processed nearly US$10 billion (36 billion baht) in annualised transaction volumes, marking a four-fold increase from the pre-pandemic period.

With the surge in both digital payment transactions and user base, YouTrip is considering the provision of digital loans in its next phase. However, this service is still in its planning stages.

According to the company’s fintech market position, it may need to raise additional funds in the forthcoming years. The company is also considering listing on either regional or US bourses.

Caecilia Chu, YouTrip’s chief executive and co-founder, stated that despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, the company has experienced significant growth, solidifying its position as the leading digital payment solution in the region, reported Bangkok Post.

The company revealed that YouTrip’s consumer multi-currency spending in Singapore and Thailand has seen a substantial increase over the past two years, with its user base tripling during this period. Consumers continue to utilise the digital wallet for foreign exchange as post-pandemic travel recovery is in full swing, and e-commerce growth in the region continues unabated.

Pinn Lawjindakul, a partner at Lightspeed, praised YouTrip’s platform for enabling customers to have a more convenient and smarter experience with foreign currencies and digital payments.

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Alex Morgan

Alex is a 42-year-old former corporate executive and business consultant with a degree in business administration. Boasting over 15 years of experience working in various industries, including technology, finance, and marketing, Alex has acquired in-depth knowledge about business strategies, management principles, and market trends. In recent years, Alex has transitioned into writing business articles and providing expert commentary on business-related issues. Fluent in English and proficient in data analysis, Alex strives to deliver well-researched and insightful content to readers, combining practical experience with a keen analytical eye to offer valuable perspectives on the ever-evolving business landscape.

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