Freetrade: from challenger banks to challenger stockbrokers

While challenger banks are tearing up the rulebook of banking, Freetrade plans to change the way we buy and sell stocks by offering fee-free trading.
FreeTrade

Davide Fioranelli is co-founder at Freetrade. The app allows users to invest in shares with zero commission or fees, using only your smartphone. Trading democratised for the 21st century!

Can you tell us more about Freetrade?

Freetrade is a challenger stockbroker based in London. Our mission is to get everyone investing, which we are doing through our apps and commission-free investment offering.

What are some of the challenges businesses face?

Most things come down to customer demands - can you build the products customers want? Can you do it fast enough? How do you meet all the nuances that each customer brings to the table?

Freetrade also went from 10 to 60-odd people in less than twelve months. Making sure we remain a cohesive unit has been a challenge but a really fun one!

How Open Banking is changing the landscape and what risks and opportunities does it present?

More than anything, I think open banking products are bringing financial services to the millennial generation. Much of the focus is on technology but better customer service and different branding are significant components of these new companies.

Looking at Freetrade, the major change is the business model. We are doing things completely differently to the incumbents and setting a trend for how brokers may do business in the future.

Since trust is key when it comes to finance, how Freetrade creates trust?

By being as transparent as possible and communicating with customers. We are upfront about all the fees we charge and try to keep all our users up to date with new products and features. We built a comprehensive Community website for doing this.

What product developments and services does Freetrade have in the pipeline?

We’ve just launched our proprietary investment platform, Invest by Freetrade. We’ll be migrating our customers on to this platform in the next couple of months, adding thousands of new stocks and the ability to buy fractional shares. There’s a lot more in the offing but that’s all I can share for now!

What are your top 3 most important lessons that you have learned since taking the company to where it is?

  1. Prepare to burn the midnight oil if you want your start-up to be successful
  2. Do not pursue a vanity project at the expense of what your customers really want
  3. Good people will be your most valuable asset