Fintech Friday: BUX – bringing investing to the masses
Efma's Boris Plantier spoke with Nick Bortot, Founder and CEO of BUX, about how the application is making it easier than ever for Europeans to invest in the stock market.
How did the idea of BUX come about?
I founded BUX in 2014 after having been at BinckBank for 12 years where I served as an executive board member. During my time at BinckBank, it became glaringly clear to me that there was a large audience of younger people who knew very little about the financial markets, and therefore, were missing out on a chance at building for their futures.
When I launched BUX, our real mission was to lower the barrier of entry to the world of finance and create a product that was collaborative and easy to understand. This was our first app, BUX X, a derivatives trading app. Over time, we saw a shift in the economic situation in Europe, and former fail-safes that most young people could rely on (robust pensions, ability to invest in homes, etc.) were becoming out of reach.
If you asked any young Dutch person five years ago if they were investing, you would likely be met with a blank stare. Even prior to the pandemic, a perfect storm of low interest rates, unsustainable pensions thanks to the aging population and the rise in the gig economy have now made it a necessity to invest. For many young Europeans, investing may be the only viable way to build a secure financial future.
All of these factors led me to want to leverage technology in a way that would give a whole new generation of investors a full-access pass to the financial markets, and make it work in their favor. This is how BUX Zero was born!
Launched in 2019, BUX Zero is now the largest neobroker in Europe with 300,000 clients. We are now present in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, France and Belgium with more countries on our roadmap for further EU expansion.
Could you present BUX's offer?
With BUX Zero, our intention is to empower our users to do more with their money by allowing them to invest in companies and industries they believe in, all without commission. BUX Zero offers a seamless, easy, and elegant user experience that takes a humanized approach to investing.
Traditional investment products can be intimidating, complicated, and expensive. With BUX Zero, we wanted to give the user enough control to empower and engage them, but not overwhelm them.
In order to keep the barrier for entry low, we do not charge any commissions to buy or sell American shares. For transactions in European shares BUX offers the 'Zero Order'. This order is fully commission free and is executed at the end of the day. If a user wants to have his/ her transaction in European shares executed instantly through a limit or market order, BUX charges a commission of € 1. You’ll find our pricing schedule here.
We offer what we call the Zero Order to ensure that BUX Zero will always offer at least one order type to invest commission-free now and in the future. We also introduced our first batch of ETFs to the app in August and we’ll be adding more in the coming quarter along with French shares.
What's coming next for BUX?
We are continuing with our European expansion in the coming months, and will be targeting southern Europe very soon.
We are also working toward adding fractional shares so that we can drive this minimum value down even further (since some stocks are expensive). And by doing so, we can further reduce the barrier to investing.