Paymix interview with Aviation Malta

Paymix: Responsive, agile, convenient and most of all….compliant.

Paymix Pro, a brand of Finance Incorporated Limited, is looking to change the shape of business banking with a pin-sharp focus on flexibility, convenience and compliance. Through Paymix Pro, the company offers  a flexible and convenient alternative to a bank and specialise in business accounts, card issuing and client account management with customers having immediate access through a dedicated web portal. Their tagline is: We’re here for those who play by the rules” and it is clear that this maxim is central to their ethos.

Paymix Pro  in targeting corporate and businesses, has already gained a significant customer base from various industries and markets and is looking to extend its reach to further expand into the aviation, shipping and luxury yachting sectors.

Having successfully identified an opportunity for international corporate customers establishing their business operations in Malta, Paymix Pro offers a more advanced and customer-centric experience, thus filling a space in the market.

Aviation Malta caught up with Mina Mitkova, Paymix’s Chief Operating Officer and Alina Ianculescu Paymix’s Corporate Sales Manager to tell us more.

How does Paymix work and how does it differ from traditional banking? 

Paymix Pro offers an alternative to traditional banking services, faster customer onboarding and sharper compliance procedures. We also provide a better customer experience across all touchpoints, from when the customer makes their initial application through to account opening and ongoing customer support.

We are a flexible and convenient alternative to a bank, specialising in offering payment accounts. However, unlike a bank, we don’t offer loans, deposits, or trade finance and most importantly, we do not use our clients’ funds as they are completely ring-fenced, meaning that they are safeguarded.

The Paymix Pro business account has been designed as an alternative cost-effective payment solution to the more traditional business banking account model, providing a straightforward application process and quick payment processing times.

As part of the offering, Paymix Pro provides its customer with  a business account, prepaid/debit Mastercard and a dedicated web portal for continuous online accessibility. This means that we can easily  expand our card issuing to the yachting industry as pilots and cabin crews would need these for expenses while travelling. As we can process cards and any expenses incurred by cockpit and cabin crew teams, we can provide an end-to-end service and are fully compliant with the  regulatory framework within which we are operating.

With a Paymix Pro business account the customer also has, dedicated IBANs in the customer’s name, can undertake SEPA transfers, has payment options in multiple currencies and the web portal access for multiple users.

We work with the Central Banks of Malta and Lithuania which  gives our customers additional  comfort and as I mentioned earlier, our customers’ money is completely protected with zero use of customer funds.

Also, Paymix Pro is partnered and integrated with many different solution providers around the globe meaning that account holders can order multiple cards, with instant funds loads, no interest incurred and with both online and offline access.

Could you tell us a little more about the web portal?

Through the web portal, our customers can manage their accounts quickly and easily. The portal can be tailor-made so it can be accessible by multiple users and further provides for different authorisation rights and limits which can be structured to be aligned with the customer’s corporate policy and the four-eye principle, where at least two people have to approve any decision. The web portal is also embedded with dual user authentication measures for both log-in and payment processing for the customer’s peace of mind.

In addition,  we offer account management, card management, card issuing and the payment account itself, not just card issuing. All of these features can be managed through the web portal. For example, a client could have a €10 million balance split into a €2 million balance allocated for card usage and an €8 million balance for day-to-day business expenses.

In this way, if the customer has five pilots and cabin crew on a particular flight, the customer can load their cards to cover their expenses while they’re working. For example, if the customer has a main wallet balance of £10 million and if a pilot is stuck somewhere, the pilot can call their controlling office and the card can immediately be charged through the portal. This gives the customer total control over their finances  whilst giving their cockpit and cabin crew teams the flexibility to make sanctioned debit card payments for hotels and meals and other approved expenses. Also, it’s important to mention that our web portal makes it easier for client accounting and finance teams to record these expense payments as well as reviewing usage analytics for each employee cardholder.

Could you tell us about iPaymix?

iPaymix is an easy-to-use e-wallet account for individuals who are looking for an alternative to traditional banking services. Through an iPaymix account, crew members are able to receive their salaries, remittances and any other deposits which would be instantaneously available for their spending and transactional needs. The iPaymix account has a dedicated mobile application giving users real-time visibility of their funds and a clear view of their spending, enabling them to control and manage their day-to-day expense requirements. Additionally, iPaymix account is further complemented by the iPaymix Mastercard which can be ordered online through the app and crew member would have immediate accessibility to funds everywhere around the globe.

How rigorous is your account opening procedure?

Our tagline is “We’re here for those who play by the rules.”

When processing an application, we perform a rigorous due diligence process that is compliant with AML and KYC regulations as well as the enhanced benchmarks on which our account opening procedures are built.

We offer fast lead times on account application processing but of course, each case is different, and this time does depend on the complexity of the specific application.

If a potential customer is well organised in terms of its documentation, we can process applications swiftly and smoothly so that our new customer’s account can be up and running with the minimum intervention. If we have to perform additional checks, then this can extend our application processing lead times a little.

The most important thing is that the customer is as legitimate and transparent as our compliance framework require them to be.

You have frequently mentioned your customers and their experiences. How important is customer service to Paymix?

Compliance and customer service underpin everything. We make our clients feel special and unique and in turn, this is what makes us unique within the Maltese banking sector. Our approach to service delivery is more client-centric. We have been able to achieve this through a team that has many years of banking and customer service experience, enabling us to be   responsive and agile. Our ethos is focused on delivering outstanding customer experiences, which is testimony to the fact that we pride ourselves on making our clients feel special. As a customer-centric banking team, we believe that each client is unique, and this focus enables us to build long-term relationships that support client business from operational and growth perspectives.

We tailor our service offering to meet each client’s individual needs as we recognise that no single client is the same. As a result, we focused on building long-term trusting relationships with our clients; so, we are not looking to simply on-board the client with no further contact or communication. We are looking to grow with the client and provide them with the products and services that they require to support their own business operations as they develop.

How large is the team?

We have a 60-strong team made up of 17 different nationalities (with each employee speaking a minimum of two languages). We have a diverse mix of locally and internationally sourced employees. As a team, we are very multicultural and multilingual and share our passion for delivering unforgettable customer experiences within highly-regulated banking and financial services environments.

Why have you decided on Malta as a base?

We were looking for a European base with a strong regulatory framework and Malta was the obvious choice with its robust commitment to regulation through the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA).

Malta has well-established and large shipping and yachting registers which continues to grow. However,  Malta is also successfully developing its aviation registry, with 9H being the registry of choice for many airlines. This in part is why Malta is the ideal choice for us.

We identified that there was a niche in the local market whereby we could fill the needs of those professional and corporate clients looking for a more bespoke and personalised approach to customer support as well as providing smarter and more efficient application processes and timelines. What we’re doing is following a completely novel approach but delivering the same levels of compliance and security. We are skilled and experienced in supporting locally registered entities as well as large international companies, servicing a diverse portfolio of industries  including yachting, shipping and aviation.

What are your future plans?

To continue our successes in the market in Europe, we are looking to acquire licences across different jurisdictions in Latin America, the Middle East and Asia, to drive global expansion outside Europe’s borders.

We’re also taking initial steps with card acquiring, where companies can offer online payments to their customers, enabling us to expand our card acquiring services in the area of both local and international e-commerce. Up until now, we have predominantly focused mostly on payment accounts but through e-commerce  card acquiring we will be able to deliver even more flexibility and convenience to our business customers for whom the acquiring of card transactions has become a natural and necessary evolution in respect of their business operations. Ultimately, we are continuously looking to expand and enhance our products and services, including in the area of luxury yachting, shipping and aviation, listening to our customer needs to further develop these customer segments and drive further our international growth.