Gilles Moro (EMPcorp): an ambitious Luxembourg Fintech
Luxembourg Fintechs have the wind in their sails, but in the e-payment sector, Flashiz, Yapital, Ipay and Digicash have had to stop trading or been taken over. EMPcorp meanwhile has recorded a spectacular performance - 15 million in turnover, 260 million in volume - and is planning an IPO in the next two years. An interview with its CEO, Gilles Moro.
Can you tell us about EMPcorp in a few words?
EMPcorp was created in 2013. It is an online and electronic payment Fintech focused on two key products - the ‘Epro’ e-wallet and ‘CBlib’, a prepaid, rechargeable bank card linked to an IBAN. I founded the company with two childhood friends. Between us we can count decades of experience in the payment sector. Our vision anticipates the disappearance of cash, followed by plastic cards and finally EPT - Electronic payment terminals. Why? Cash has issues with traceability, for example, which is difficult to reconcile with anti-money laundering measures.
“EMPcorp wants to be one of the first Luxembourg Fintechs to launch an IPO”.
Is your main competitor Paypal?
Yes, but Paypal is best suited to large e-commerce sites. We target small and medium-sized e-commerce and online gaming sites - but not adult sites - turning over less than 5 million a month and looking for a partner able to provide a tailor-made, secure solution. For example, our clients can calibrate the number of transactions per day or define their own speed criteria, essential factors in detecting fraud much more quickly. Compared to other Fintechs, I think that my 15 years’ experience at Orange, then at TicketSurf International - a company I sold in 2013 - give me an advantage. I've learned how to tame this highly competitive, perpetually moving market. You must continually use your imagination. We are therefore developing products that meet compelling needs and we know how to respond rapidly to our clients. During our first year trading in 2014, we recorded 125 million in transaction volume and €5.5 million in turnover.
In your view, what’s the outlook for EMPcorp and Luxembourg?
We are based in Luxembourg, with 27 members of staff, and have business developers all over Europe working to extend our international influence. In the immediate future, our target is 500 million in volume, a key milestone in the payment sector. Usually, one billion follows shortly afterwards! With this in mind, we are planning one of the first Luxembourg Fintech IPOs for 2018-2019. In terms of products, we will continue to concentrate on our two segments and launch derivative products such as ‘Tepee’, a system that gives mobile vendors such as taxis, doctors or independent professionals an EPT on their mobile phone, via a simple app! When we set up in Luxembourg in 2014, we received a wonderful welcome from LuxfutureLab, Luxinnovation and the CSSF. Our target for 2018 is to obtain our electronic cash licence. Some countries such as France are catching up in the Fintech sector. Luxembourg must retain its leadership while offering an appropriate, innovative service to high-growth Fintechs.