Powering Fintech Growth: Wallester’s Journey with AWS ☁️

Powering Fintech Growth: Wallester’s Journey with AWS ☁️

Wallester, a rapidly growing fintech company based in Estonia, has set a remarkable example of how to leverage cutting-edge technology to drive innovation in the financial sector. In a recent interview with Amazon Web Services (AWS), Wallester’s CTO Andrei Gornostajev and UK CEO Julian Brand shared insights into their journey, the critical role of AWS in their operations, and the notable achievements they have obtained together.

🌟 Introduction to Wallester 🌟

Founded in 2016, Wallester specialises in providing innovative payment solutions. The company offers two primary products: the Wallester Business solution and the Wallester White-Label Visa card solution.

The Wallester Business solution provides businesses with highly efficient financial management tools, such as the instant issuance of virtual and physical Visa cards and a comprehensive expense-tracking platform. It offers the best features at the best value and is free for any company of any size in the EEA and UK. Wallester’s White-Label Visa card solution gives businesses a turnkey solution to create branded payment cards and mobile apps, enhancing their ability to offer custom-tailored services to their customers.

These products cater to a wide range of businesses, offering features such as instant issuance of virtual and physical Visa cards and comprehensive expense tracking platforms. Wallester’s dedication to providing top-tier financial management tools has attracted over 3,000 clients and resulted in the issuance of approximately one million active cards across Europe and the UK.

☁️ Choosing AWS for Scalability and Security ☁️

One of the critical decisions Wallester made was to build its platform with AWS. This choice was driven by the need for a scalable, secure, and compliant infrastructure. AWS’s resilient cloud solutions gave Wallester the flexibility to scale operations globally while keeping costs manageable.

The decision to use AWS was also influenced by the need for a trusted cloud provider that could meet the demanding requirements of high-profile organisations. Wallester’s IT team had past positive experiences building on AWS, making it the logical choice.

The interview mentioned that AWS’s cloud infrastructure offered Wallester the ability to build a secure, scalable solution that could seamlessly expand to multiple regions. Wallester’s CTO, Andrei Gornostajev, highlighted that they strategically decided to handle all development in-house, without relying on outsourcing or contractors, to retain knowledge internally and establish a highly adaptable platform. AWS services such as EC2, EKS, CodeBuild, and RDS formed the backbone of Wallester’s infrastructure, enabling the company to focus on delivering secure and advanced embedded financial solutions.

🔒 Ensuring Compliance and Building Trust 🔒

Compliance and security are essential in the financial industry. Wallester needed to ensure that its operations met strict regulatory standards. AWS provided Wallester with comprehensive compliance controls, supporting 143 security standards and compliance certifications, including PCI-DSS. This allowed Wallester to manage regulatory compliance efficiently, reducing the need for extensive internal resources dedicated to risk management.

Julian Brand mentioned that when the need arose to obtain PCI-DSS certification, they evaluated various options for establishing a PCI-DSS-compliant zone. While it was common for their partners to have it on-premises, they recognised the significant investment of time, finances, and ongoing maintenance associated with a physical lab. They saved significant time and resources by opting to implement their PCI-DSS-compliant zone within AWS, leveraging AWS’s shared responsibility model.

Thanks to AWS, Wallester was one of the first financial service providers in Estonia to receive PCI-DSS certification and enable payment transactions in the cloud. The use of AWS CloudHSM and KMS played a significant role in meeting the security requirements for card data storage. This partnership significantly reduced the cost and complexity of maintaining compliance, allowing Wallester to focus on innovation and customer satisfaction.

📈 Growth Milestones and Expansion 📈

The partnership with AWS has been instrumental in Wallester’s impressive growth. Over the past year, Wallester achieved a 2x growth in revenue, a 3x increase in clients, and a 1.67x expansion in team size. The company also opened new offices in Valbonne, France, and London, UK, broadening its market reach.

In the interview, Andrei Gornostajev described how Wallester onboarded and integrated with several partners, including card personalization centres, card processors, 3DS providers, card schema (VISA), banks, and SMS gateways, to enable payment card issuance. For their White-Label clients, they offer a single integration point through a user-friendly REST API, simplifying the card issuance process and ensuring security.

Wallester’s ability to conceptualise, build, and launch dozens of unique financial solutions proved the effectiveness of AWS’s scalable infrastructure. Notable projects include collaborations with KuCoin and Latvian Post, illustrating Wallester’s capability to create customised financial solutions and venture into government projects.

🌐 Recognition and Future Plans 🌐

Wallester’s innovative approach and successful use of AWS have not gone unnoticed. The company was selected for the AWS SMB Security Campaign for 2023, highlighting its exemplary use of AWS services to ensure security and compliance. AWS also released a case study detailing Wallester’s achievements and the benefits of their collaboration.

Looking ahead, Wallester aims to continue its trajectory of innovation and growth by focusing on three key directions:

  • Establishing a reliable data warehouse by leveraging AWS solutions like Amazon Redshift.
  • Harnessing cutting-edge AI technologies, such as Amazon Fraud Detector or SageMaker, to enhance fraud monitoring capabilities and deploy AI-powered assistants.
  • Embracing Visa Cloud Connect, using AWS services like PrivateLink and CloudHSM to connect securely with Visa’s global processing network.

Wallester’s partnership with AWS exemplifies how a cloud-born fintech company can achieve remarkable growth. Through the strategic use of AWS’s scalable and secure cloud services, Wallester has met compliance standards and delivered advanced financial solutions to a growing customer base. As Wallester continues to innovate and expand, its collaboration with AWS will undoubtedly remain a cornerstone of its success.

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