Miguel Warren of Payoneer

Receive payments from anywhere in the world through Payoneer

By Jean De Ramon

 “A lot of people are focused on domestic opportunities but there is a whole world out there.” — Miguel Warren, Country Manager at Payoneer

Whether you are a big company or an aspiring freelancer, going global is a big step that with one wrong choice could cause what you have worked hard for to be gone; but Payoneer wants to help. They believe that receiving cross-border payments shouldn’t be a hindrance in expanding a business’ horizon. As it says in their website, “to empower global commerce with innovative cross-border payments platform”. They want to enable businesses from different parts of the globe to interact without having to worry about cross-border payments.

Payoneer and what they do

Payoneer was founded on 2005, and is headquartered in New York City. It current has 12 offices around the world and caters to over 200 countries and 150 different currencies. Miguel Warren, Country Manager of Payoneer Philippines, shared that the service has been available since 2010, but the local office started in 2016 because of the amazing growth the company has seen.

Miguel tells TechShake that they want to be able to lessen the friction that happens Filipino businesses and professional send and receive cross-border payments. Payoneer offers more ways to receive funds at a lower cost and a higher foreign exchange rate. Working with banks globally enables them to help their customers receive funds from global banks without the need to put in a large maintaining balance.


Innovation at its finest

For Miguel, Payoneer has a very innovative business model because they are focused on an under-served segment of cross-border business-to-business payments  “We provide a convenient digital alternative to traditional financial services,” he said. Being exposed to traditional financial technology (Fintech) made him understand what customers wanted: a convenient alternative —“They want it digital, they want it mobile, and they want a good-user experience”. The only problem is that banks are struggling to keep up. “The pace of innovation is lagging behind the expectation of the consumer,” he adds. Payoneer has the ability to deliver that kind of innovation that the clients want because they offer a convenient, digital way of cross-border payment which also offers a good customer experience. Miguel also shares that another edge of Payoneer is that, “…our process is much simpler; we offer a digital dashboard, and the service itself, is very transparent.”

Greater opportunities are ahead

Payoneer wants to focus on becoming more locally present in order to interact with their clients and for people to become more aware of what they do — especially people outside the metro. Miguel also sees a very bright future for Payoneer here in the Philippines since a lot of Filipinos are engaged in online work, “We think we will continue to grow. The Philippines is one of the top 5 online outsourcing countries globally. The government has recognized this and are currently running a lot of programs to encourage online work as an alternative career path.”, he adds.

The stories that clients share with Miguel inspires him, “People tend to focus on certain segments and oftentimes freelance professionals don’t get as much attention. But as I meet more and more of our users, I’m just amazed with their amazing success stories!” He wants to help these people to continually grow and for others to see the opportunities as well.

Start-ups have a lot of potential

Miguel sees the start-up ecosystem in the Philippines to be very promising. For him, you do not have to start with something big. It is about finding opportunities, however small they initially may seem. He believes that funds will not be a problem if the Philippines continues to focus on becoming a world-class destination for quality services—even foreign investments wouldn’t be a problem. “It would be great if people didn’t have to leave. Payoneer want to empower the next generation of OFWs… Online Filipino Workers! The market is expanding, and if you focus on your strengths—good resources, customer-oriented people who are very hardworking and very creative—there is so much potential.”

Miguel’s advice for those who are thinking about entrepreneurship is not to restrain their passion for too long, or later in life they may regret not having tried at all. “Starting something, however small, and taking that first step is a huge thing. A lot of Filipinos are risk-averse and I think that holds back the entrepreneurship mindset. If it’s a small step, it is a calculated risk—not much to lose and you gain experience. The more experience you gain, the better equipped you are to take bigger steps in global entrepreneurship.”


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