• Universal Partners FX listed in prestigious list that previously identified brands including Revolut, Deliveroo, HelloFresh and Bulb
  • 2021 list reflective of post-pandemic world with at-home care service, digital wills and petcare app all in top ten
  • Startups on this year’s list have raised over £951 million in finance and over £696 million in revenue

The UK’s longest running index of disruptive new startups, the Startups 100, has released its 2021 lineup and Universal Partners FX has made the list.

Run by the UK’s most established website for entrepreneurs, Startups.co.uk, the Startups 100 offers a showcase of new businesses that demonstrate innovation, solid financials, economic impact, and the ability to scale. The list has previously identified brands including Revolut, Deliveroo, HelloFresh and Bulb.

Included for a second consecutive year, Universal Partners FX have continued to help businesses manage their FX risk through an extremely difficult period. By offering a more in-depth service than what is available at banks and some other brokers, they are able to tailor their strategies to each business within their base. The result is that businesses that have faced huge hits to their bottom-line were able to navigate through the worst phases of the pandemic, ensuring that fluctuating exchange rates did not add further strain on their business. In doing so, Universal Partners FX achieved record-breaking growth which finalised their transition from start-up to disrupter.

Read more here.

Managing Editor of Startups.co.uk, Richard Parris, comments: “After a particularly difficult year for businesses we are happier than ever to celebrate UK success stories. Every year the Startups 100 shows how UK businesses are responding to the issues, concerns and trends of the time. Entrepreneurs solve problems - whether that is the home care crisis being tackled by businesses like Cera and Birdie, diversity in hiring being challenged by Multiverse or the recent pet boom being capitalised on by Vet AI - you can see UK businesses innovating to meet the challenges of the time - and being very successful whilst doing it!”

About the Startups 100

Entering the Startups 100 is completely free. Established in 2008, the Startups 100 index identifies privately-owned UK companies launched in the last 5 years that demonstrate innovation, solid financials, economic impact and the ability to scale. 

As the longest running index of its kind, the prestigious Startups 100 is industry-renowned for uncovering businesses that will go on to become major brands, and even household names. It boasts alumni companies including Revolut, eve Sleep, HelloFresh, Purplebricks, LendInvest, Deliveroo, Bulb, and many more acclaimed businesses.

Today Universal Partners FX provide their semi-annual trading update.

The first half of our financial year saw fantastic results, building upon the incredible progress made at the end of 19/20.

Below are the key highlights:

 

  • H1 revenue increased by 32% to £1.85 million compared to £1.4 million in H1 2020.
  • Turnover increased by 21% compared to H1 2020.
  • New clients increased by 32%.
  • UPFX staff headcount has increased by 45%.
  • Implementation of new back-office systems to help meet future growth forecasts.

 

Click below to download the full report:

UPFX_Half_Yearly_Report_Oct_20-Mar_21.pdf (1.61 mb)

 

 

 

 

We are delighted to announce our nomination for Best International Money Transfer Provider at the Moneyfacts Consumer Awards 2021.

This is the second year running we have been nominated for this award, highlighting the client satisfaction we deliver on a consistent basis. 2020 has been a challenging year, but one of steady growth for Universal Partners FX and we are very pleased to end the year with more recognition after our 20th position ranking in the Start Ups 100, our listing by the Crown Commercial Service  and our nomination for the Money Age Awards. We hope that 2021 brings more growth and recognition, but above all, the continued satisfaction of our clients.

The winner of the award will be announced on 27th January and we are up against some of the biggest names in the industry. We'd like to congratulate our staff who combined provide the excellent service to our clients each and every day.

 

 

We are delighted to announce our nomination for Best Money Transfer Service at the Money Age Awards 2020.

With it being such a challenging but fruitful year so far for the company, we are extra proud to gain more recognition for the services we are providing within foreign exchange. This comes after our 20th position ranking in the Start Ups 100 and also our listing by the Crown Commercial Service for our special efforts to help businesses and the community during the COVID-19 outbreak.

The winner of the award - from a three-name shortlist - will be announced on 8th October at the Waldorf Hotel in London.

The recognition we are receiving is testament to our staff and the hard work they put in to ensure our clients receive the very best foreign exchange solutions. At a time of global uncertainty, expert guidance has never been more important.

To get a quote for international money transfers click here, or you can register for free here.

 

On 22/06/2020, Universal Partners were named in the Start Ups 100 list of disruptive UK start ups.

Entering the list at number 20, this is a fantastic achievement considering this is the first year we have entered and is yet another indication of the amazing growth of the company.

Director Oliver Carson says hard work is the key to the growth. "With turnover last year of over £900 million we know that this is not possible without the incredible work from each and every member of staff." He added that client trust was also critical in establishing such a strong foundation for the company with those who work with us "showing faith in what we do and what we can deliver".

 

About the Startups 100

Entering the Startups 100 is completely free. Established in 2008, the Startups 100 index identifies privately-owned UK companies launched in the last 5 years which demonstrate innovation, solid financials, economic impact and the ability to scale. 

As the only and longest running index of its kind, the prestigious Startups 100 is industry renowned for uncovering businesses that will go on to become major brands, and even household names. It boasts alumni companies including eve Sleep, HelloFresh, Purplebricks, LendInvest, Deliveroo, Bulb, and many more acclaimed businesses

 

How it’s ranked:

  • Finance raised
  • Turnover for the previous financial year
  • Profit for the previous year
  • Projected turnover for the next financial year

 

The full list for 2020 can be viewed here

In October 2021, Universal Partners FX were listed again in the 2021 list, read more here

 

 

Universal Partners FX (UPFX) is delivering foreign exchange services, at zero profit to the company, to all organisations bringing in vital COVID-19 equipment. This service is listed by The Crown Commercial Service, the official procurement body. The founders of UPFX, Dhaval Patel and Oliver Carson, introduced the extraordinary measure to give practical support during the current crisis. They are believed to be the only FX Company offering this service.

UPFX has created a special team, who prioritises COVID-19 payments. No fees are added to these transfers and it can mean extending credit limits to facilitate faster transactions.

Many UPFX clients were protected by forward contracts coming into the lockdown, meaning they had certainty over the rates they will pay during this time of high volatility. However, UPFX could see that some were struggling, and this was delaying vital supplies reaching hospitals.

Dhaval Patel, co-Founder and Director of UPFX, explained; “We could see that foreign exchange issues were slowing down the procurement process. Those delays meant that medical teams weren’t getting vital supplies in time (including PPE and hand sanitiser), which could lead to loss of life. 

In addition, with sterling rates moving over 10% in a short space of time, many UK businesses saw increased costs on imports. By forward buying, our clients saved that 10% and that value translated to more vital supplies being available to those on the front-line.”

Pai Skincare, a natural and ethical cosmetics company, created a hand sanitiser especially for coronavirus and have donated 8,000 units. UPFX converted $150,000 and EUR 170,000 for them in March.

Sarah Brown, the Founder of Pai Skincare explained; “We are a global business. There has been so much volatility in the markets with Brexit and now Covid-19. Universal Partners has kindly provided their service at cost during the Covid-19 crisis, as we are providing essential items related to Covid-19.”

JAG UFS, a logistics solutions company, has brought in 10 x 747 aircrafts carrying PPE (including 10 million face masks in each aircraft) to supply NHS Scotland & Wales.

UPFX has been forward buying on $7million for supplier payments.

Gary Wilcox, the CEO of JAG UFS commented; “UPFFX has been instrumental in the PPE deliveries, allowing us to forward buy on currency. During so much uncertainty, they have really added value to our business and to the NHS in Scotland and Wales.”

UPFX has also donated care packages to local hospitals. These include additional hygiene supplies and snacks.

UPFX is renowned for their extraordinary growth. Founded in 2017, they achieved a turnover of £113m during their first year. In 2019 their turnover had grown to £945 million with £2.8 million profit

Oliver Carson, the co-founder of UPFX concluded: “We’ve been extraordinarily successful, and it was time to give back. This virus has affected all our lives, we’re pleased to be able to play our part in the work to fight it.”

Our Directors - Oliver Carson & Dhaval Patel - address the company performance and annual accounts, the team and company culture, our relationships with clients, and giving something back at a difficult time.

 

Company performance

With our financial year just ending there is much to be proud of. All involved with Universal Partners FX have worked phenomenally hard to achieve fantastic financial results for the past 12 months.

Since March 2018, our revenue has grown by over 500% - and profits by 200%. The magnitude of these results is enormous and the achievement of generating revenue of £2.8 million and just over £2 million in gross profit at this stage of our growth cycle cannot be overstated.

We are delighted to announce that we have grown our client base by an astounding 55% at a time when significant reinvestment has gone into expanding the team, improving systems and creating new departments. This is a great reflection of the hard work put in by each and every member of staff.

You can find the full report here.

 

The team and our unbeatable culture

These results highlight the hard work from our amazing team, who are striving to be better each and every day.  From the beginning we have made it a priority to create a culture of hard-work, trust and honesty. By investing heavily in our employees and putting them at the heart of everything we do, we know that this helps create a culture that breeds success. Ultimately, all of this is done so that our clients will reap the benefits and our fantastic reviews show we are delivering on that.  Our long term goal is to be the biggest foreign exchange company in the UK, so we know that the bottom line is providing value to our clients, and we will never lose sight of that.

 

Thank you to our clients

In the end, nothing is possible without the unwavering trust of those who use our services. In the past 6 months we have welcomed record numbers of new clients and we'd like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for being part of our fantastic rise in the foreign exchange industry.

We are very proud to work with some incredible firms in some exciting industries. The financial results we achieved came down to large volumes being traded though us, so working with large multinationals and companies that are listed on the stock exchange provides us with the best opportunity to showcase the value we can bring.

Providing value to our clients and in some cases hearing the stories behind your FX is what we get up in the morning for. We look forward to much more of this in the future.

 

The road ahead

It is difficult to start making projections at this moment in time, but growth is definitely on our agenda for the year ahead. We want to continue to add top quality people to our team and anticipate that our dealing floor will expand by 50% in the coming year. This growth will be backed up by doubling the back office team, which we are investing in to support future growth of core divisions. It is truly an exciting time for the company and every one has a part to play.

 

Giving something back during these difficult times

Given the extreme circumstances at the moment, we appreciate that for many there is massive uncertainty. This includes businesses, but also individuals who are unwell or worried for the safety of loved ones. In these difficult times it is important that we stick together because collectively we can beat this.

With that in mind, we have guaranteed that all our staff will keep their job and measures have been taken to protect salaries.

To extend our help outside the company, we have also pledged care packages to an NHS hospital local to us, giving essential supplies to the great NHS staff who are battling day in day out to help treat people.

A small gesture, but hoping it offers some respite to those in greater need. More information on this will follow.

Once this is all behind us, we hope that Universal Partners FX continues to grow, but also that businesses, individuals and the nation as a whole can bounce back and enjoy success in the coming years.

Keep safe everyone.

 

Oliver Carson & Dhaval Patel

Universal Partners FX Directors

 

Universal Partners FX are delighted and proud to celebrate hitting a milestone on independent review website, Feefo. With 100 reviews received and all of them being 5-star ratings, we thank our staff for their hard work and all of our clients who reviewed us to help us reach this point.

The reviews come from our business and personal clients, all of whom gladly shared their positive experience in sending money overseas.

Our team is equally as attentive and hard working for repeat business customers - who need to pay their suppliers every month – and one-off transactions made by individuals.

 

 

To have an overall score of 5 out of 5 stars on Feefo is exceptional but comes down to hard work and the excellent relationships we have with our clients.

All Feefo reviews are verified, meaning accuracy and legitimacy is guaranteed, you can read them here.

Oliver Carson, Director of Universal Partners FX said: “From day one we train our staff to not only be experts in currency exchange, but also be attentive, respectful and extremely hard-working. It is very satisfying that this is paying off and we are being recognised by our clients, which is the most important thing”

“To get to 100 is a great result, but we hope this only strengthens as the company continues to grow.”

To get a quote for your foreign exchange, just click here

Click here to see our current vacancies

To mark International Women’s Day on 8th March, our latest article analyses the reasons why women continue to be under-represented in the finance world.

The current climate

Whilst in the past 20 years we have seen great improvements in gender inequality, according to the International Monetary Fund still only 2% of chief executive officers at financial institutions are women. It is tempting to assume that this issue starts at the top and runs right down to trading and broker positions and whilst this is partially true, there are other factors that have acted as barriers to women entering junior roles within finance for decades. These issues present a challenge today for companies to attract female talent.

Last year, the Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney gave a speech stating that “Finance offers so much, but still doesn’t offer enough for women”, recognising that even with recent improvements in equality, there is still some way to go.

Looking at history

But why is this such a challenge? Surely today the growing consciousness of equality from employers and the willingness of women to work and have successful careers means that this issue should solve itself?

Unfortunately, finance - and particularly trading – has historically been so bad in terms of equality that the willingness of women to work in the sector is low. This issue goes back to the 1960’s and the famous case of Geraldine Weiss, who was unable to get a job in finance due to gender discrimination, so started her own investment newsletter and used to sign it “G. Weiss”. It was getting on for a decade later that she revealed her identity as a female and her newsletter is still used as a template for an existing publication today.

The point is that she felt she needed a 10-year track record before her content could be taken seriously, given the harsh barriers to women that existed at the time.

Whilst things have definitely moved on since then, the trading industry continued to repel women throughout the 80’s and 90’s.

Firstly, the aggressive and overly masculine trading floor environment has been an obvious barrier to women considering jobs as brokers or traders. This was particularly rife in the 1990’s, with many insiders revealing the sexist nature to traditional trading floors. The semi-glorification of this in the highly acclaimed film, The Wolf of Wall Street, further highlighted the toxic environment that existed at this time.

During this time there was undoubtedly high levels of gender inequality, an issue we may still be dealing with today but something which individuals like Mary Erdoes have helped address. However, for such a long time women simply did not want these types of roles, therefore today it is harder to find female candidates who have amassed 10-15 years of experience, meaning the senior trading roles invariably get filled by men. Combined, these two issues help explain how only 13% of individuals approved by the UK’s FCA for trading roles in 2019 were female.

But are women actually better suited to finance and trading than men?

Many studies have shown that by narrowing the gender gap would create greater stability in the banking system and enhance economic growth. In another study by Warwick Business School, women traders outperform men by 1.8% despite trading less than them.

The basis of both these studies focuses on the difference between the male and female ego. A female trader is more likely to recognise her own lack of knowledge and take the time to learn and research in order to improve. Men are less likely to acknowledge this and also more likely to act on impulse, due to an overconfidence in their knowledge and ability resulting in taking unnecessary risks.

Universal Partners FX welcomes women applicants

At the time of writing, around 40% of senior traders at Universal Partners FX are women. Having come through our intense training program, all female members of staff are equipped with the knowledge and expertise required to be a top foreign exchange trader.

Director Dhaval Patel adds “We work hard to create an environment that is inclusive of everyone. We are a long way from the old idea of a trading floor – we promote respect and professionalism.”

“However, with the number of women applicants to job adverts remaining low, Universal Partners FX want to actively open the door to females looking for a career in foreign exchange. Gender is irrelevant, all we ask is for a certain level of work-ethic and the openness to learn”.

View our open positions here

Universal Partners FX Joins Movement to Shine a Spotlight on Fraud

International Fraud Awareness Week kicks off Nov. 17, 2019 worldwide

Fraud costs organizations worldwide an estimated 5 percent of their annual revenues, according to a study conducted by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE). The ACFE’s 2018 Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse analyzed 2,690 occupational fraud cases that caused a total loss of more than $7.1 billion.

The seriousness of the global fraud problem is why Universal Partners FX announced that it will be participating in International Fraud Awareness Week, Nov. 17-23, 2019, as an official supporter to promote anti-fraud awareness and education. The movement, known commonly as Fraud Week, champions the need to proactively fight fraud and help safeguard business and investments from the growing fraud problem.

Universal Partners FX joins hundreds of organizations who have partnered with the ACFE, the world's largest anti-fraud organization and premier provider of anti-fraud training and education, for the yearly Fraud Week campaign.

During Fraud Week, official supporters will engage in various activities, including: hosting fraud awareness training for employees and/or the community, conducting employee surveys to assess levels of fraud awareness within their organization, posting articles on company websites and in newsletters and teaming up with local media to highlight the problem of fraud.

“We are committed to doing as much as we can to combat all types of fraud across the world.” Said Universal Partners FX Director Oliver Carson. “As a financial company, we pride ourselves on keeping money safe and ensuring best practices are always adhered to. The awareness created by Fraud Awareness Week is key to protecting people from all around the globe from fraudulent activity”.

ACFE CEO and President Bruce Dorris, J.D., CFE, CPA, said that the support of organizations around the world helps make Fraud Week an effective tool in raising anti-fraud awareness.

“Fraud is an issue that unfortunately affects people from all walks of life around the world and it takes many forms,” said ACFE President and CEO Bruce Dorris, J.D., CFE, CPA. “Whether it’s a trusted employee stealing from a small business, or organized rings of fraudsters targeting seniors in our community, most people know someone who’s been victimized by fraud. That’s why it’s so important for organizations to join in this fight together in order to raise awareness during this week. It is a serious problem that requires a proactive approach toward preventing it and educating people is the first step.”

For more information about increasing awareness and reducing the risk of fraud during International Fraud Awareness Week, visit FraudWeek.com.

The 2018 Report to the Nations is available for download online at the ACFE’s website: ACFE.com/RTTN.  The Report is in PDF format.

About the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners
Based in Austin, Texas, the ACFE is the world's largest anti-fraud organization and premier provider of anti-fraud training and education. Together with more than 85,000 members, the ACFE is reducing business fraud worldwide and inspiring public confidence in the integrity and objectivity within the profession. For more information, visit ACFE.com.

 

For Immediate Release                                                                        

For More Information Contact:

Jack Scorgie

E-mail: jack@upfx.co.uk