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Fintech FOMO: Here’s an Opportunity You May Not Want to Miss Out On.

Dave Jackson Dave Jackson, Stockhouse
1 Comment| July 21, 2021

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Stockhouse readers and investors are a savvy and sophisticated set. And our polling numbers give proof to it.

And, they know what type of sectors and the companies within them that are trending upwards. One such sector that’s red hot right now is Financial Technology (or Fintech)…whether it’s blockchain, S-a-a-S-based solutions, air-tight secured and trusted payment services, etc.

Enter Euro Asia Pay Holdings Inc. (EAP) (CSE.EAP, Forum) and its unique business model that’s created a secure, easy-to-use payment solution for the international student market. It’s cutting-edge, but easy to use. Here’s how.

Its first product, called SideKick, is a branded mobile payment solution that enables one party, typically a parent, to transfer, control and monitor funds to another party. This ingenious product consists of a student-facing mobile application, a parent-controlled student prepaid card, and a funding portal, plus a lot of security features such as instant transaction notifications. Seamless, super secure, and simple to use, with the ability to support more than 240 countries that send students to Canada.

With SideKick's introduction to the Canadian market, the company will provide easy access to a highly convenient and intuitive tool facilitating financial literacy among children and teenagers, with direct control and involvement from their parents. SideKick’s aim is to create distinctive opportunities for Canadian youth to further exercise financial responsibility while providing parents the ability to monitor and track their child's finances. In short, mom and dad can now take a deep breath when it comes to their children’s present and future financial responsibilities and commitments.


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The company’s mission statement says that they’re developing and providing, “Innovative financial solutions for the next generation of consumers”, thus strategically targeting the fastest growing and most technically-informed demographic group – Gen Xers, Gen Z, and Millennials. This is a massive and exploding market that keen investors have to keep a clear eye on.

Recently listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange on February 25th, Euro Asia Pay Holdings has created a laser-focussed approach to enabling parents to transfer, control, and monitor payments to their children in a simple, intuitive manner. The SideKick product includes a student-facing mobile application, a prepaid student payment card and a parent portal, among other state-of-the-art features.


Next-Generation Alternative to Banking: What it’s All About

EAP keeps customers loyal to the brand by creating an alternative to traditional banking. And it’s called Hero – a unique service that can offer additional financial products. Hero’s plan is to evolve with customers, adding services that keep them using the platform and increasing their ‘Lifetime Value’. The youth domestic market adapts the product to domestic markets, offering parents the ability to give their children of any age an alternative to traditional banks. The same technology can be applied throughout several countries in the form of a product of its own or through partnerships with local financial institutions.


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In the News

Recently, on June 24th, Euro Asia Pay's SideKick card was set to expand to Canadian parents and students. This is of immense interest to consumers and investors.

According to the company, with SideKick's introduction to the Canadian market, EAP will now provide access to a “highly convenient and intuitive tool facilitating financial literacy among children and teenagers, with direct control and involvement from their parents. SideKick aims to create opportunities for Canadian youth to further exercise financial responsibility while providing parents the ability to monitor and track their child's finances.”

Peter MacKay, Chief Executive Officer of EAP, commented:

"We are excited to extend the SideKick international product in Canada, our home market. Canadians place great value on tech and financial literacy, economic independence and saving for their future, and we are here to fully support these core values through our feature-rich technology. Backing this is our commitment to financial education and empowering Canadian youth to learn critical fundamentals to ensure their financial future is promising."

Keeping busy, one of the company’s keystone partnerships is the launching of a new enhanced SideKick product powered by Mastercard. This unique product includes a variety of card features including an exclusive budget tool that allows parents to set spending budgets for students.

International students have access to a physical SideKick Card issued by Mastercard that makes it easy and safe for them and their parents to monitor, budget and spend funds in Canada. With the card, parents are able to decide how much money to deposit onto the student's SideKick Card and use the EAP’s Budget Tool to control funds while students can keep track of their spending on the SideKick app.

The Globe and Mail reported that international students now contribute an estimated $22 billion a year to the Canadian economy.


From the CEO:

In conversation with Stockhouse Editorial CEO & Director, Peter MacKay, explained how Euro Asia Pay has redefined and redesigned the methodology of safely and securely getting funds into the hands of ten of thousands of students. For parents, this is called piece of mind.

SH: So, Peter, can we start off with a little background history about yourself and the history of Euro Asia Pay Holdings?

PM: I'm a business leader with international experience in both private and public companies. My expertise spans 25 years with a track record of building and growing successful technology businesses, as well as two successful exits and three public listings. I founded Expert Agent in 2003, the leading real estate SaaS solution in the United Kingdom, connecting more than 14,000 realtors and almost 9 million home buyers.

Prior to joining EAP, I acted as the President, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer of Venzee Technologies Inc, the Managing Director at Websky Ltd. (Expert Agent), and the Chief Operating Officer at PDT Technologies Inc., a global, full-service product design and development firm which is now called Kabuni Ltd. and is traded on the Australian Stock Exchange.

Alongside with EAP, I also volunteer my time and experience with The Royal Canadian Marine Search & Rescue (RCM-SAR), where we provide marine SAR response 24 hours a day, 365 days a year on the British Columbia coast. It feels good to give back and pulls on my almost decade long career in the military.

EAP was incorporated in British Columbia in October 2017 with the goal of developing payment solutions that offer enhanced digital financial services to the international student market. SideKick, our first flagship product was launched in June 2020 and currently supports students from over 240 countries coming to Canada.

After the launch of our international product, we've heard from parents in Canada that they would also love to make use of our technology, as there has been a lack of solutions supporting their kids' needs in Canada. We've heard from them how most traditional banks underservice kids, teens, and young adults in the country. So, it seemed natural for us to enhance our audience to the next generation of consumers, servicing both the international and domestic markets.

SH: Can you update our investor audience and your shareholders on any new company developments, especially in the wake of COVID-19?

PM: Hero is the obvious evolution of SideKick, delivering additional functionality to a demonstrably wider audience and will be available Canada-wide in Fall 2021. As a Canadian company with an established presence worldwide, we need to lead in our domestic market. Having previously been aimed only at international students within Canada, SideKick is evolving and will now support Canadian parents and their children, thereby increasing the addressable consumer base from approximately 700,000 people to more than 6 million.

We continue to add features that EAP users can enjoy. Just in May of this year, we launched the new SideKick Mastercard with advanced features. It allows students to enjoy other functionalities that were not part of the previous version of SideKick, such as contactless payments (tap), secured payments with chip and pin, as well as ATM withdrawals. We also had a tech integration with Cohort Go, adding 187 new countries to the Sidekick platform, for a total of 241 supported countries in total. We will continue to innovate and look at segments and previously overlooked demographic groups to ensure that their needs are closely met when rolling out new products.

We also have plans to extend and duplicate our products and services to other countries in the next few years, as most of them face similar problems in terms of kids and teenager’s financial literacy.
SH: Can you tell us some of the details of your cornerstone product SideKick – a prepaid MasterCard with monitoring features for international students/parents in Canada – and what it means for shareholders and would-be investors?

PM: The SideKick Card is the perfect financial product, which is powered by Mastercard and includes a feature-rich platform. SideKick is a turnkey solution that allows parents to send, monitor and control funds for their children. The product also offers added financial control for parents so that they can control where their kids spend their money, as well as monitor transactions and balances.

With our unique feature of international money transfers, international students do not need to have an existing bank account in Canada and can access their funds instantly once they are deposited onto the Sidekick Card, which they can then use anywhere a prepaid Mastercard is accepted, in-store or online. Additionally, they have access to budgeting tools and resources to help them manage money and gain financial literacy.

For shareholders and would-be investors, it means that we have a proven product currently in the market with a growing base of consumers and with strong partnerships in place. Shareholders are noticing that this model works and with the covid restrictions coming to an end, we are already seeing an increase in the number of users from the international market.

SH: Besides Sidekick, what are some of the current projects you’re working on like Hero?

Click to enlargePM: I would say that Hero is the evolution of SideKick. We are creating a product that evolves alongside our clients, adding new functionalities and attributes that are both supporting our audience's needs and can keep them with us for a long period of time.

We've heard from kids, teenagers, and their parents how they feel underserved by traditional banks and other financial institutions, as these companies tend to focus their efforts on the active population. There is a lack of solutions exclusively thought of for financial literacy of kids and teens. Other solutions can be used by youth, but were not developed with their needs in mind. That's where we fill the void: we listen to their needs and we evolve our products and services to support them every step of the way.

We see the need for budgeting and daily financial transactions on a neo banking platform increasing day by day, and our technology addresses much broader audience needs and demands. Hero is the alternative that is being thought of specially for the needs of our audience.

SH: What's next for EAP? How Ambitious & blockers if any?

PM: We are building a solid foundation in Canada with our international and domestic programs. The education market is very similar for most of the top education destinations in the world, which is also true for the problems parents face when they try to send and monitor money for their children away from home.

Having a product approved and running in Canada is a big advantage for a global expansion, as we already have compliance, diligence and processes in place that will give us faster integration with processors, banks, and card issuers anywhere in the world.

That being said, we are working on an immediate future US expansion, with other lucrative territories to follow.

There are complexities, but this is what we do, this is the team we have built, and this is why we are confident in our growth apparitions.

SH: The Fintech sector is a crowded and competitive one. What sets the company apart from other student investment companies in this space and what makes your business model unique and attractive to investors?

PM: At Euro Asia Pay, we see ourselves as a company that creates products and services which can be tailored to the needs of the customer in any given situation in an easy manner, while offering ideal user experience. Our services are based on a robust proprietary and innovative technology that can be adapted to any industry and situation.

For instance, we are expanding our product offerings to reach a wider addressable market to potentially over 6 million users by launching SideKick domestically by Fall 2021. We are confident that we will replicate the success that the product has enjoyed internationally here in Canada as well. Canadian youths are highly tech savvy and independent. Hence, there is a need to ensure financial literacy at a young age.

We are sure that they will be inspired by all the features that SideKick offers to empower them and help them safeguard their financial future. At the same time, the product will evolve with the users, that's why we plan to add new features and services as kids are growing up and entering new phases of their lives.

SH: You just went public in February and your stock has been on a bit of a roller coaster ride since then. What can you tell our investor audience regarding the current valuation of your stock and why you think it’s a good buy right now?

PM: Every newly listed company has to find its base post IPO, so some movement is to be expected. However, our roadmap shows a bright future for our shareholders, we are not only hitting but overdelivering on all of our internal milestones.

Both fintech and the edtech industries are receiving an influx of money from investors around the world, and that's a great indicator of what would happen with our stock in the near future. In my opinion, investors that come on board at the beginning of the public life of a company are usually the ones with the highest return on their investments moving forward.

SH: Can you tell our investor audience what you think 2021 looks like on the road to profitability?

PM: EAP has developed a regulator-approved and commercialized financial solution for international students, foreign and domestic. The post-pandemic pent-up learning activities in Canada represent clear and present revenue growth opportunities for EAP. The student sector is underserved but is with substantial potential for broad product/service development (e.g. HERO). EAP is at the pre-revenue stage, but by Q3/Q4 revenue will be visible and substantial.

We have already seen an increase of the number of international students coming to Canada and subscribing for our product, and I believe that with the decrease of covid-19 restrictions this number tends to increase even more in the next few months. There are tens of thousands of students studying remotely from their home countries at the moment that are only waiting for the borders to reopen so they can come to Canada and start their experience as an international student.

I expect that something similar will happen with the domestic economy in this post-pandemic phase. Kids are coming back to in-person school in the Fall and more than ever parents will need tools and services that give them peace of mind and the security that their kids have everything they need to succeed away from them. For younger children we are talking about having a way to pay for their daily lunch or after-school activities, but for a university student is making sure they can pay for their rent, school supplies and other living expenses, and have access to their parents' money even if they are studying in a different city or province.

SH: What exactly is ‘Next-Generation Neo Banking’ and what should investors know about its benefits over traditional banking?

PM: The Next-Generation Neo Banking is an alternative to traditional banking focused on the next generation of consumers. As we said before, kids and parents have been underserved by the big banks and other financial institutions. What we are creating is a tailored alternative to these audiences, with products, services and features that solve their needs in terms of paying for their daily expenses, but that also can educate them to become financially independent in the future.

SH: Can you explain your multi-price strategy for revenue growth? Sounds very innovative! Simply put, how does the company build revenue?

PM: We believe that different people have different needs, and with that in mind, we create a pricing strategy that can fit everyone's pocket. Not only do we offer different pricing for different types of subscriptions, but we also make sure to get our revenue from a variety of sources, so we can maximize it.

In terms of the users, we get revenue from their activation, subscription, exchange rates (international students only), and interchange. The more money they add to the platform, the higher is our revenue. But that's not all, we also have the ability to get referrals from partners on products that our clients sign up for through our platform.

That way, we can offer good deals for our clients, but also boost our revenue thinking on our shareholders and the growth of our company.

SH: From the investors perspective, can you tell us about the managerial and operational set-up of the Company and how will Euro Asia Pay position itself as an industry leader?

PM: We are proud to have built a team of world-class professionals, based in Vancouver, Canada. It's a multicultural team of well-connected and experienced industry professionals who have developed EAP into a powerful and feature-rich service platform for the youth generation of consumers.

EAP has been a pioneer in the international education sector to facilitate the transfer of funds for living expenses and their utilization from overseas in Canada. Most recently, EAP has boosted its total addressable market by offering financial services and products tailored to Canadian kids and their families, as an alternative to traditional banks. We want to lead this change and we are working hard to promote financial literacy and other financial solutions for the next generation.


SH: And lastly, Peter if there’s anything else that I’ve overlooked that you’d like to add to the article, please feel free to elaborate.

PM: I strongly and passionately believe that not only do we have an amazing opportunity in a tremendously lucrative sector, but as our niche is delivering innovative financial solutions to the next generation of consumers whose parents and guardians demand safety, security and peace of mind while promoting financial literacy for the future. To me, that is a huge opportunity and responsibility but one we're ready to deliver on.


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For more information, visit www.euroasiapay.com.


FULL DISCLOSURE: This is a paid article produced by Stockhouse Publishing.


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