Five questions for… François Briod, co-founder and CEO of Monito

What does your firm do?

Monito is an online comparison tool that provides a new way for people to find, compare and review money-transfer services and fees when sending money abroad. We created it to remedy the lack of transparency surrounding money transfers. Monito ranks transfer services based on cost, speed and trustworthiness, and helps those sending money abroad to save more than £20bn a year in excessive fees. We compare and review more than 450 money transfer operators across more than 170 countries.

What’s been your greatest achievement so far?

We’re very proud to have opened the public discussion about transparency in the money-transfer industry. Some 700,000 people now use Monito to compare money-transfer services, and we receive dozens of grateful messages every month.

What has been your biggest challenge?

Brand awareness and branding. It’s a difficult balance between vanity metrics and communication. You need to hone in on the facts that matter as opposed to the things that you think are sexy. One of the most challenging things about brand awareness is that it’s unquantifiable. In a data-driven world, we expect exact measures of success. But brand awareness is not about price, it’s about credibility. You need a comprehensive mix of marketing and PR activities to achieve this. 

What are your plans for hitting your targets this year?

Our goal is to raise awareness about the £600m in excessive money-transfer fees paid by Brits every year, and to promote Monito as the solution. We plan on investing more in direct marketing to spread the message, as well as partnering with institutions that share our mission.

What advice would you give fellow entrepreneurs?

Accept you can’t know everything. Surround yourself with specialists and respect their knowledge.