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Background

Born in Edinburgh in 2017, Zumo is a fintech young company founded to bring the benefits of blockchain technology and digital currencies to people and businesses everywhere. Supplying the technology that allows customers to engage with a new, digital and decentralised economy at scale, over the past year Zumo has multiplied its customer base 100-fold and doubled its workforce through the continuing deployment of innovative technology that reimagines the crypto user experience at a time of unprecedented digital asset adoption.

Our bold innovation is to have taken something very complicated, and put the simplest of presentation layers on top, which is why since the launch of the app in 2020 some 50,000 customers have come to trust the Zumo mobile application.

We didn’t just set out to create another crypto app/service: we set out to be inclusive of the people and the planet; we built a service that was accessible and understandable (because we believe in financial inclusion); we prioritised compliance (because we care about trust); and we filled the leadership team with a diverse range of backgrounds and viewpoints (because all companies should). 

In everything we’ve done, we’ve worked to make crypto accessible and understandable to the everyday user. We believe that smart money is for everyone and we’ve worked hard to make sure everyone can participate, and no one is left behind. 

Impact

Zumo’s journey so far – and into the future – revolves around bringing the benefits of blockchain and digital currencies to everyone. 

Highlights of the past year – alongside a 100-fold increase in customer numbers to reach a 50,000 customer milestone – include:

  • Product: launch of a new virtual Visa debit card offering seamless cash-to-cryptocurrency payment functionality, alongside innovative smart price alert and smartfolio portfolio tracking features;
  • People: a doubled workforce, with key strategic hires and appointments including Chief Operating Officer Dagmara Aldridge; Chief Technology Officer Tim Sabanov; and Non-Executive Director Andy Downes; and
  • Enterprise: the launch of ZumoKit, a B2B crypto-as-a-service solution that allows fintechs, banks and payment providers to connect to the blockchain, adopt digital and crypto currency solutions and profit from decentralisation.

Our IP has been engineered entirely in house, with pending UK, European and PCT (international) patent applications submitted around cryptocurrency key management. In May 2021, this IP was independently valued at a sum of £35 million by leading global IP evaluation firm Metis Partners.

The Zumo App has an average customer rating of 4.3 on the Apple App store and 4.2 on the Google Play Store, and we have received backing from investors including Murray Capital, Coldplay’s Guy Berryman and the Scottish Investment Bank.

As one reviewer comments: “Being a complete newbie to Crypto, I was impressed by Zumo. It is really easy to use and doesn’t over complicate things like a lot of the other apps that are available. Zumo truly is an app that anyone can use from your son to your grandma. The customer support is really excellent, nothing is too much trouble and they respond really quickly too. I would definitely recommend this product to anyone who is looking to get into crypto, it removes the confusion!”

Featured in media from the FT to the BBC, our customer success is reflected in numerous awards and recognitions over the course of the last year, including: listing, Sifted European Fintechs to Watch 2021; shortlisting, Best Mobile Wallet, People’s Choice Crypto Awards; listing, HackerNoon Start-up of the Year; cohort member, TechNation Fintech 4.0 growth programme; individual wins and nominations, UK FinTech, Women in FinTech and EY Entrepreneur of the Year awards; and shortlisting, Paris Fintech Forum Awards.

Scaling

Our bold goal is to build a unicorn and to take it to a £1bn + IPO. Everything we have done over the last years has been built around that philosophy, to take on as much risk and to grow as fast as possible in an incredibly challenging environment from a technical, regulatory and reputational perspective. We are trying to build a Fintech unicorn in Scotland and to do this we have to challenge ourselves and our team every single day. Securing funding for our type of business is exponentially harder in Scotland than if we were based in London, Berlin, New York or San Francisco but we believe that we have to push to achieve our potential.

Our goal is to build a global business through partnerships and we have opportunities to do this in Latin America, Africa and Asia in addition to the UK. We aim to do this as early as possible in our lifecycle. We are especially interested in expanding into low and middle income countries where the benefits of self sovereignty and decentralised finance are even greater than in developed countries. A key initiative is to spread our app through remittance corridors and we are working on building out specific partnerships.

The size of the total addressable market runs to the billions: we see the wave of mass crypto adoption coming, and we believe ourselves placed to capitalise on it. This includes multiple user groups:

Financially literate (UK + EU) 50+ million people 

Objective: Activate my crypto, spend my crypto, safely store my crypto, peer to peer payment 

Emerging Market (America, Africa, India) 480+ million people

Objective: Peer to peer payments, Mobile payments, Access to bank account, Financial Equality 

Crypto curious (UK, EU, US, Asia, Middle East) 1.3 billion people 

Objective: Automated trading, Banking alternative, Saving alternative, Limitless global market

Values

Zumo is a purpose-driven fintech business with transparency, accessibility and financial inclusion at its core.

In purpose: to positively impact the financial wellbeing of people, regardless of gender, race or geographic location, through the mass adoption of blockchain technology. 

In values: to adhere to a commonly shared set of principles that shapes the reality of our culture. The Zumo values are: Inclusion Inspires, Transparency Wins, Love the Adventure and Unshakable Commitment. We recognise people in the business who exemplify these values and they are an integral part of our hiring process.

The business has also made a wider commitment to sustainability and decarbonisation. We believe the crypto sector has an opportunity to lead the way in the transition to renewable electricity, and we want to set an example that we can all be proud of. An early signatory of the Crypto Climate Accord, we’ve been committed to climate neutrality in our Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions from day one and are signatories of the UN Global Compact and the SME Climate Commitment. We are also partnered with Waste Aid, a dynamic small charity that empowers local people in low and middle income countries to set up and run profitable waste management and recycling programmes. We have raised significant funds for Waste Aid through employee and customer engagement.

Projects evaluation criteria

Level of Impact
40%
Scalability
30%
Transparency
20%
H-Factor
10%

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VOTES

Mark

8.25

Giuseppe

5.50

Joanne

9.50

Anthony

9.50

Mihaela

10.00

Tom

10.00

Kirsteen

9.50

Fiona

10.00

Alex

9.75

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