TransferWise have been aggressive marketers from the start launching with the slogan "bye bye banks" and naked people on the tube. They ran into trouble again this week with the UK advertising regulator with a 'misleading' advert on total savings vs. banks. Whilst the company has always claimed to be operating independently of the banks, in reality it is almost entirely dependent on bank infrastructure, liquidity and processing.
We considered the results of the mystery shopping exercise. We noted that for a transfer of £1,000 into Euros, the average saving was almost 90%. However, we noted that for all of the other transfers, except two, the average savings were less than 90%. We understood that TransferWise extrapolated the 90% saving (derived from the £1,000 into Euros scenario) to all other transfers, whatever the currencies and amounts involved, and we considered that the savings shown in the calculator were therefore artificial and based on a different scenario, rather than the actual saving a consumer would achieve for that transaction. Because consumers would not achieve a saving of exactly the amount shown, we considered that the claim "You're saving £xx" had not been substantiated and we concluded that it was misleading.