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Created on 19.10.2021

Yuh: Pioneering greenfield work in the mobile sector

Yuh hasn’t been around for long. But what exactly is new about the finance app that PostFinance and Swissquote launched jointly and what pioneering work lies behind it? We discuss this with Yuh CEO Markus Schwab.

But PostFinance already has the PostFinance App. So why does Yuh exist?

Because, with Yuh, we appeal to customers who have different expectations as far as financial management is concerned due to their affinity for anything digital. For these customers, a finance app has to fit with their lifestyle and offer the sort of experience they’re familiar with from Netflix, Spotify etc. They want an app where everything is easy to handle digitally – from opening an account to investing money. They want rapid service on the channels they use. But they also want to be integrated into the community. A good example of this was the Yuh Cup: during Euro 2020, we pit different cryptocurrencies against each other on our social media channels. The Yuh community would decide which cryptocurrency to send through to the next round, and in the end we had the winning cryptocurrency up and running within a week.

What’s innovative about Yuh?

It’s not really how it looks or the user experience it provides seeing as all apps that appeal to the same target groups are very similar in that regard. Whether it’s CSX, Neon or Yuh, the app a person prefers is broadly just a matter of taste. What we provide is innovative because customers can use Yuh to pay, save and invest – all in a single app. Another innovation on the Swiss market is that customers with PostFinance and Swissquote can onboard quickly and easily without any additional ID checks. But Yuh is also innovative because the app was launched by two leading Swiss financial institutions, and it was deliberately launched as a joint venture so as not to be integrated into the structures, processes and organization of both companies. This means it is free, independent (and indeed quick as a result), dynamic and agile in how it responds to market and customer needs. We were also the first finance app to launch our own crypto token in the form of Swissqoins.

And how do Swissqoins benefit Yuh customers?

Swissqoins allow the Yuh community to share in the success. Whenever customers use Yuh – whether they recruit new Yuh customers, pay using the Yuh card or use Yuh to purchase shares, ETFs or cryptocurrencies – they receive Swissqoins. In total, we’ve produced 200 million Swissqoins for 2 million francs using blockchain technology, which we are now distributing. Every month, we invest a total of 50 centimes per Yuh customer in these Swissqoins. So the more customers we have, the more the value of a Swissqoin will increase from month to month. A Swissqoin can never decline in value though. This makes Swissqoins not only an investment, but also an incentive for customers to make the most of what Yuh has to offer and to grow the Yuh community.

It’s really practical – what makes Yuh so simple to use?

Investing, for example. It isn’t just straightforward, but transparent too. With Yuh, there is no need to open a custody account, you don’t pay any custody account management fees and the shares, ETFs and cryptocurrencies available don’t have cryptic names or complicated descriptions so that only a banker would understand them. You don’t have to wrestle with terms such as limit order or market order. Instead, you can quite simply “buy” and “sell”. What’s more, you can also see what you pay for a given transaction. Indeed, transparency is very important to us. Yuh doesn’t come with any hidden costs, and you don’t get any nasty surprises in the form of unexpected fees. Let’s take the account management process for example. This is based on what users expect from Netflix or Spotify: you register, and can start using the services there and then.

To what extent is Yuh a pioneering achievement?

One pioneering achievement was that PostFinance was bold enough to implement the solution in collaboration with a partner (Swissquote), one they found extremely quickly. Another pioneering achievement is the fact we managed to bring the app to market in less than a year.

Yuh and the PostFinance App are in competition with each other. Are both necessary?

There’s no denying there is stiff competition. Ultimately, both tools enable our customers to manage their finances on the go. As PostFinance wishes to remain a relevant bank for all its customers in future, it needs Yuh. As we’ve mentioned already, Yuh allows us to appeal to a customer group that is becoming increasingly prominent. And if we don’t do this, someone else will.

What was different about developing Yuh compared to other digital projects PostFinance has been involved in?

For one thing, we were able to start a greenfield project and focus on mobile-only. For example, we didn’t have to take into account those customer groups that do not want to use their mobile phone for banking. There were also very few people involved who could make decisions really quickly and on the spot. This meant we are able to make progress as a small group with the same goal and mindset, and were able to do so at a rapid pace and in an agile way.

What sort of expertise and skills are especially important now for Yuh?

First of all: a forward-looking product management team that considers questions such as: “How do we take our app to the next level?”, “What features do we want it to have?”, “What products do we want next?”, “How does the app work?” and so on. Secondly: intelligent marketing that understands how to appeal to and involve our target group on the relevant channels, and that manages to bring an unknown brand into the public eye with limited funding. Thirdly: developers who are able to make our ideas a reality, and a customer service that leaves no questions unanswered.

Where do you see Yuh in the future?

It’s true we don’t know how quickly and substantially the target group that prefers digital banking will grow. There will almost certainly still be users who prefer face-to-face consultation, to correspond by post, or a mix of both physical and digital mail, depending on their needs. However, we are certain that the number of customers who we describe as digital-first customers will continue to increase. To serve these customers, we have made a start on the areas of payment, savings and investment, fully aware of the fact that this is only the beginning. Over the next few years, we will add more products and features to our portfolio. In future, perhaps we will also offer mortgages or liquidity management tools. Who knows? Exactly what this will be depends on what our community wants, what trends we see on the market and what we truly think will be beneficial here at Yuh. With Yuh, we of course aim to be the most popular finance app in Switzerland.

About Yuh and Markus Schwab

Portrait Markus Schwab

The finance app Yuh was created as part of a joint venture between PostFinance and Swissquote, its aim being to consistently break new ground in the field of mobile banking. Markus Schwab has been CEO of Yuh since May 2021. Prior to this, he held many different roles with PostFinance, mostly recently as the Chief Business Officer with Digital First Banking.

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