Post-pandemic fintech – Octavian Patrascu explains how brands have adapted their offer and their identity to adapt to a new era LeapRate
LeapRate interview…Today we had the pleasure of interviewing Octavian Patrascu, the founder and CEO of global online broker CAPEX.com. Having over a decade of experience as an entrepreneur and business angel, we discussed what Mr. Patrascu had to say about the current online brokerage landscape.
We spoke with him about his vision for the post-pandemic fintech industry and the changes he has implemented in his businesses in these times of rapid change.
LR: Hi Octavian and thanks for joining us again! The last time you were our guest was in November of last year, CAPEX.com had recently launched two products from its brand X line. What has changed in the company since then?
Octave: We have created our X-branded product line, which includes QuantX, StoX and ThematiX, and are about to launch our investment service through DMA:
- QuantX is a smart portfolio builder that allows investors to create an investment portfolio in less than two minutes, based on their preferences
- StoX allows investors to trade products without leverage with 0 commission
- ThematiX combines the best companies in the world in the best stock portfolios designed to make trading exciting
- DMA – Direct Market Access – Commission-free investing for everyone
LR: I want to go back a bit and ask you what prompted you to launch CAPEX.com? What prompted you to invest in this sector?
Octave: I’ve been working in the online industry since 2008, so it’s been 14 years already. During these times, even though I have invested in various and various other start-ups, the one that really excites me is always represented by fintech companies.
Having the experience and dedication for this sector, I wanted my daily work to remain in e-commerce.
I founded CAPEX.com at a time when the rules were getting stricter, the competition fiercer and the market more crowded. So I took it as a challenge to compete and learn from the great players.
LR: What are the core values of CAPEX.com?
The spirit of CAPEX.com is the spirit of the employees. We believe this because several of our departments in our company have a large number of young workers. The average age of employees is around 27 years old. 43 nationalities, countless cultures, an almost perfect balance between the number of women and men employed – we value and value our team; that’s why we always prefer to promote from within.
I think it’s because we started during the toughest time in the markets, so we had to be molded by our environment and adapt to thrive. Today, online commerce is entering a golden age as many new types of users join the marketplaces.
Because we may have a shot at proving that it doesn’t matter if you start last, it’s the classic ‘tortoise and hare’ story – we’re here for the long haul; I see this business as a marathon, not a sprint. Others may have the time advantage, but you can still become an influential business by working hard, thinking about the customer and the product.
LR: You talked about starting during tough market times and talking about those times, what changes have you implemented in your businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic?
Octave: We have focused on a two-pronged strategy over the past two years: adjustments to our corporate mission and changes to benefit users.
Let’s talk about how we organize ourselves:
- We started implementing the Agile way of working and wanted to make sure that all of our procedures, processes, ways of working, execution, etc. were made digitally.
- It earned us the recognition of being named a Microsoft success story during the pandemic.
- So, for a long time, we have focused on bringing together people, process, connectivity, technology, time and place to determine the most appropriate and efficient way to complete a task or a project.
- For customers, at the group level, due to market volatility and the excitement associated with online trading, we started to create more products for them and better services. We have taken steps to reduce spreads and fees, which has given us an influx of new customers.
LR: What common trend have you noticed in fintech lately?
Octave: I guess it’s all about democratization these days. This is the term that comes to mind. Democratization not only benefits customers/users of financial or banking instruments, but also small businesses, which can now achieve more with fewer resources. This is possible due to the future represented by low-code or no-code, which is expected to grow at an annual rate of 44.4% by the end of 2022, API connections and other factors. .
Today, you can connect the dots to create great products in much less time than a few years ago while still maintaining a competitive edge. Fintechs are becoming more popular year by year, and brokerage firms have started to shift their focus from traditional brokerage/investment firms to product or marketing firms while remaining compliance-focused.
LR: What are your goals for CAPEX.com in the future?
Octave: I won’t go into detail now because I know part of the success of CAPEX.com is due to a better mindset that says: be humble, modest and friendly, disclose less and deliver more.
I will just mention a few follow-up points:
- We launched new products last year; we are focusing on the same vision this year. Launch products that users can use and benefit from
- Reach exciting markets
- Have more licenses so that we can provide better services
- Implement new verticals for our one-stop-shop mindset
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