By @SimonCocking, interview with Frank Fernandez-Asin, chairman of Paytween.

Business Showcase : Paytween

You say the App has a strong social focus in comparison to others on the market. What exactly do you mean by this?

Sharing expenses with friends is a social thing in itself. We tend to split costs with people when we make plans together, carry out group activities or generally by sharing our lives with family and friends. These are prime examples of being social.

Within this context, communication is an essential aspect to be taken into account, and it is here that Paytween comes into the equation. The app was created in order to enable people to communicate whilst sharing expenses and the aim was to have an all-in-one solution: communication, calculator and payment.

When you share expenses, you make an outlay of money, yet in that the app is a chat this means that everyone can comment on each of the expenses. It helps to resolve doubts and disagreements.

In the near future a new functionality will allow users to send images and videos, which are also important elements of communication between people.

Furthermore, to reinforce the social aspect of the app, Paytween has a strong social media presence. We are making a big effort to disseminate our philosophy of what sharing experiences includes, such as sharing expenses, making plans together, in other words sharing your life with others.

Could you tell us more about the process you undertook to define the usability of Paytween? 

Right from the beginning, our idea was to make Paytween THE chat to make plans and share expenses with friends and family. Taking this as a base, we then decided that as far as the chat was concerned it would be better to adapt it to what the user was used to, which narrows it down to 2 or 3 chats in use worldwide. And on top of this, we added the aspects of sharing expenses.

For this part, the expenses should be seen the same way as normal messages in the chat, yet giving the option to see more details about the outgoing and some key information. Furthermore, it was important that the display be very clear and simple, that one could distinguish easily each group activity, what everyone had paid, the concept for each expense, what one owes, to whom, etc.

Concerning the payment aspects, we thought that it should be the user who decides which payment methods to use, but at the same time giving the option to pay in cash.

Which key competencies do you have amongst the team members in Paytween?

Our main principle here is to have a small team of very senior people. A compact team of experts in each field, with lots of know-how, experience and drive. It’s more difficult to find each member, and the price comes higher for this type of profile, but the results are much better.

The fields in which we have some great experts are designers, developers and marketing. The people leading these areas have a proven track record of over 10 years of professional experience, have worked both for multinationals and start-ups and have worked at international level.

Looking over us all we have Frank, Chairman of the company and someone with over 25 years of international experience and investor in multiple projects and companies, all of which have been very successful.

What does your global approach consist of? 

Our global approach means having the App available in all continents and in as many languages and currencies as possible. By maximizing the potential to reach new users, this enhances the benefits we gain in return, such as enabling us to learn more about user behaviour. Also, obtaining more users globally means that our average cost per user acquisition is lower. In addition, it allows us to grow faster based on a higher probability of virality because Payween is an App used amongst friends, and the more people who use it, the higher the number of friends who might be introduced to it. Last but not least, being present in all continents gives us more flexibility to implement new ideas and try new initiatives in certain places first.

How does Paytween see the future of payments and money etc?

The key ideas to define the future are: Easy, Safe, Free and Everywhere. The optimal situation would be telepathy, in other words making things happen simply by thinking of what you need – disposing of your money from anywhere around the world, and subsequently being able to pay for or send money to all corners of the globe without the need of coins, apps, or any other type of method… and that all this were free and 100% safe. Everything is going in that direction.

How does Paytween plan to use Blockchain to its full potential?

 Paytween is all about dealing with IOUs between people. Our users have informed us that since they have started using Paytween, the amount of money they owe or are owed has increased. According to them, this is due to the fact that all expense details are clearly noted down, everyone has access to them and the levels of confidence of actually being paid pack have risen because “it´s all in there and everyone can see it”.

With Blockchain, movements of money between people are controlled by a whole community. It is this community which registers and certifies each movement in each step, which in turn increases security aspects and clarifies the process.

If Paytween continues to evolve as an App with which people lend each other money, which at the end of the day is what is happening (even amongst people who don’t know each other that well), Blockchain will provide transparency, reassurance and safety to lending and money movements between users.

Nevertheless, one needs to say that Blockchain still forms part of our long term roadmap. Prior to that, we need to continue developing the App in a good number of other aspects first, which are equally as exciting.

If you would like to have your company featured in the Irish Tech News Business Showcase, get in contact with us at [email protected] or on Twitter: @SimonCocking

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