Customer Spotlight Series: Curfex

This week, we put the spotlight on Curfex, a P2P international money transfer platform in Hong Kong. Founded in 2016, Curfex currently allows users to send money between the Hong Kong and South Korea corridor. They will be launching more Asian-Oceanic currencies soon, including Australia, Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia.

We spoke with founder Wee-keat Lee for more insight on Curfex.

OKLink: Thank you so much for spending time with us, Wee-keat. Let’s start by talking about yourself – what were you doing before Curfex?

Wee-keat: That’s a long story actually. I was an equity analyst at DBS for 5 years before I made a transition from being a financial analyst to becoming a corporate strategist. Later on I worked as a management consultant for another year.

OKLink: What brought you to the remittance industry?

Wee-keat: It’s a bit of everything. I’m Malaysian, and I constantly have the need to send money back to Malaysia. One of the frustrations I had was poor transparency and a total lack of control. Whenever you send money back to Malaysia, the Hong Kong bank would not be able to tell you what the exchange rate is. You can only send the amount back, the Malaysian bank will then determine the rate band, and then the Hong Kong bank will tell you how much you manage to get your transfer through. Most of the time you end up paying quite a lot of fees transferring back to Malaysia.

Over time as well, whenever my friends and I get together to do some investments abroad, we always have similar problems sending money overseas because the fee charged would be quite high for certain currencies. When we saw there is a rise in P2P transfer in Europe and the U.S. like Azimo, Transferwise, WorldRemit, and so on, we were looking for the Asia alternative but couldn’t find anything in Asia.

So all of these things together, was how the idea came about.

OKLink: Can you tell us a bit more about the latest developments at Curfex?

Wee-keat: Sure. Curfex started last year and we got our MSO license in Hong Kong in April 2016. We’re on beta right now but we’re down to the last bit of system integration. After that we can open up the platform and launch the Hong Kong and Korea corridor. We charge customers a flat 1% fee regardless of transaction amount and the exchange rate is always the spot rate.

OKLink: What’s the structure of your team?

Wee-keat: There are overall about 6 parties. I have my partner in Korea running North Asia including Japan, and a partner in Malaysia looking at the South Asian markets. My whole development team is based in Malaysia and I have two partners in Australia looking at the Australia and New Zealand markets. So all in all, I have 2 guys in Korea, 1 in Japan, myself in Hong Kong, 6 in Malaysia, 2 in Australia.

Curfex attended the first FinTech event #techinasia Tokyo in September 2016 

OKLink: What are the corridors that Curfex specializes in?

Weakeat: We’d like to see ourselves upgrading and focusing on the Asia Pacific region, with emphasis on the South Asian corridors. But like I mentioned earlier, what we currently have is Hong Kong to South Korea and vice versa.

At the inception of Curfex we identified 12 markets in the Asia Pacific region – including six in South East Asia and six in North Asia, Australia and New Zealand. The idea was we looked at the flow of funds between these 12 countries and realize they are actually quite balanced among these countries. It is from this basis that we wanted to start building the platform.

OKLink: What customers are you most excited to serve?

Wee-keat: Ideally we’d like to see ourselves as a platform that’s helping a lot of migrant workers save a lot of money because they are the ones who are actually paying the highest fees sending money back home. It’s fascinating that at this age a lot of things are still murky. Many of us take things for granted and don’t question the rates. The truth is banks are able to give better rates to priority customers but not smaller individual clients. When it comes to migrant workers, they actually lose a lot of money to the system. That’s where we want to step in and help.

In terms of geographical location, we’re looking at places like Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia to a certain extent, and going further into Vietnam as well.

OKLink: What is the biggest challenge in opening corridors?  

Wee-keat: I think the biggest challenge is probably understanding the culture, because not every country goes by a rule book. It’s also important to understand the nuances and history behind the industry. Having that understanding will help you to better approach, or to take the right measures in things like applying for licenses.

The thing with South East Asia is that the culture is very different, and the pace is a lot slower. The application can take a little longer than what you’d expect. For example we submitted the same MSO license applications in some of the South East Asian countries and Hong Kong. Hong Kong was able to process it in the span of a couple months, while South East Asia basically came back with a lot of different questions. There is a lot of red tape involved and it’s always an ongoing process.

OKLink: Do you need an MSO license in every country you operate in?  

Wee-keat: We go two routes – for the first route we try to get our own MSO license, and for the second route we try to approach licensed players and try to partner with them. Some of the low hanging fruits that we usually go for are brick and mortar businesses that have not opened up their electronic or digital businesses. We help them to digitalize their business and offer them the portals that they need. We help them to open up more corridors at the same time while using their licenses to service other countries.

OKLink: Do you currently have any customers or transactions?  

Wee-keat: As we are on Beta right now, we are very selective about who we service at the moment because it’s a period when we’re not only testing our systems, we’re also making sure that we’re gathering enough flow of fund between those countries to balance it out.

So right now we’re exclusively working on two customers, one is a corporate customer in Vietnam trying to send to places like China and Singapore; the other is an individual a property investor in Hong Kong trying to send to Japan for its investment property in Japan.

OKLink: Sounds like you guys are targeting only businesses at this stage?

Wee-keat: Correct. That’s the first thing because we need businesses to make sure the fund flows are stable. Individuals are actually quite volatile because you can’t predict when someone will send money abroad. If you just have retail or you are not able to project or estimate where the flow of funds is, you may be a little steered toward one country and you have trouble meeting the liquidity of another country. But if you build a base with the businesses, when the retail comes in, it doesn’t actually fluctuate that much or not as volatile as could be.

Eventually we would like to extend our services to migrant workers. At the end of the day that’s the community we’d like to help with because while businesses appreciate the convenience, their actual savings is not as much as with migrant workers.

OKLink: What does your typical day look like?

Wee-keat: It’s a bit of everything. My partners say I’m very convincing, so every time we need to convince a regulator, or a partner, I’m there. That’s my primary role – which is also why I’m flying a lot. Partially this is what I was trained up to do as an analyst, because whenever you sell a stock you have to market the company really well. My team is also everywhere so I have to constantly get in touch with them and make sure that everything is going according to plan.

OKLink: What are the biggest opportunities you’re seeing in the remittance industry?

Wee-keat: The most important thing is working together. If you are competing with the different operators out there, essentially what you’re doing is you’re ring fencing your own customers. And when everyone starts to ring fence their customers, there’re not that many customers to go around. But if you’re able to open yourself up and work with others, then their customers can be part of your customers, and with that critical mass can the true P2P model actually work.

OKLink: That sounds very much like why we are building the OKLink network in the first place – to connect players in the remittance industry, big and small. In what area do you think OKLink can help your business the most? How are you planning to use OKLink?

Wee-keat: Real time turnaround. We tell customers we want to send money under one business day. It offers them more control so that they don’t have to wait a few days. We are talking about using OKLink for Hong Kong and Singapore, and potentially also other corridors.

Interested in joining OKLink or want to be featured? Talk to us at

Our Ethos – Building an Open Financial Infrastructure for the World

Two trends are defining the trajectory of our world today. The first is globalization connecting people to live, work, and form businesses with anyone, anywhere. The second is technology enabling ubiquitous access and whole new realms of experiences via the internet, and smartphones.

As a result we have entered an age where people are empowered to participate both as user and shareholder in many facets of life, from how we consume content and information, to the way we buy and sell goods, to how we move around and travel to new places. We are moving towards a collaborative economy – one that is not controlled by a few corporate giants, but that is governed by and for the people.

Photo credit: Denis Petrina via Medium

However, the financial services industry is arguably the most centralized industry in the world and the last industry to feel the transformational effect of the technological revolution. Much of the world’s banking systems also run on outdated technology and is governed by regulations designed back in the nineteenth century.

Western Union in Sri Lanka

In an age where more and more people move across borders, the bank’s astronomical fees and snail speed in processing cross-border payments are not only egregious, but functionally impossible to serve the needs of a completely modern and different user segment.

Rewiring the global financial system for speed and inclusion

Ever since 2009 with the advent of the Blockchain, the underpinnings of our financial infrastructure has been reorganized forever. Blockchain technology makes it possible to replace the model of top-down hierarchical organizations with a system of distributed, bottom-up cooperation.

The ultimate shakeup of the blockchain is that it unbundles the thousands of components that make global finance work, and empowers the local consumer and business by being a common-shared technology infrastructure for anyone and everyone.

When everyone shares the same distributed ledger, settlements don’t take days, they occur instantly for all to use. That also means we have the chance to radically lower fees. The barriers to entry for becoming a community bank to offer global services, to build an app servicing a global user base have been dramatically lowered.

This shift could liberate many new entrants from the confines of old institutions and empower entrepreneurs everywhere, fostering competition and innovation. Small financial players can spring up to do the things that banks can’t do – and that’s good for the billions of end users in today’s interconnected world.

OKLink – An open financial infrastructure for the world

If the Blockchain is the Trust Machine as termed by the Economist, why not use this technology to the maximum by enabling wholly new entrants and small financial players to do global finance with one another?

That’s the ethos on which we built OKLink – a platform connecting companies all over the world, big and small, to create an open infrastructure for cross-border payments. We are building an open infrastructure for financial players who provide the best service for customers in their local markets.

Using the blockchain technology, companies all over the world can be linked and use secure digital assets to settle transactions anywhere instantly and at a low cost.

We support money transfer companies including mobile wallets, remittance apps, cash pickup outlets and much more. We also support forward-thinking companies with cross-border settlement needs, including multinational companies, e-commerce merchants, and companies handling cross-border payroll.

In such an open infrastructure, financial firms will prosper only on the basis of delivering an unbeatable service and experience to the customer – whether that be a migrant worker, or a small business purchasing supplies from overseas. No longer will finance be based on who has the most resources, or who has seized the greatest control on the market.

Much like other sectors being disrupted by technology, we believe the blockchain will once again enable smaller players to deliver great financial services to customers in every part of the world.

We have a chance to rebuild the system.

Introducing the Customer Spotlight Series: Coinplug

customer spotlight coinplug cropped.png

Much like your average person, we like to talk about ourselves. A lot. “On average, people spend 60% of conversations talking about themselves – and this figure jumps to 80% when communicating via social media platforms” This quote from Scientific American (unfortunately) rings true on our communication channels. We’re looking to shake things up a bit – after all, OKLink’s biggest successes are closely tied with customer successes.

Which is why we’re excited to introduce our Customer Spotlight series, purely focused on introducing our customers and the hard work they do to excel in their business. This week, we put the spotlight on Coinplug, a South Korean startup founded in 2013 as a bitcoin exchange network. We spoke with Evelyn Chung, Director of Marketing & Business Development, for more insight on Coinplug:coinplug

OKLink: Thanks for spending the time to tell us about Coinplug, Evelyn. Let’s just right into it by talking about yourself – how did you hear about Coinplug in the first place?

Evelyn: My former boss is also the founder of Coinplug – he told me about the business and asked me to join.

OKLink: Got it. Let’s actually talk about Coinplug – it gained a lot of publicity when it opened Korea’s first bitcoin ATM, can you tell me about that event?

Evelyn: Coinplug first started as a bitcoin exchange platform. The consumer penetration was low as not many people knew about bitcoin, or understood it. We decided to open the first bitcoin ATM in 2014 to make bitcoin accessible to Koreans, which would also be a way to educate them on the technology.

OKLink: Sounds like it was a big mission from the start. How were you able to do it?

Evelyn: There are a lot of independent ATMs in Korea – these ATMs can help you withdraw/deposit funds into your bank accounts, but are not actually products of any banks. We partnered with these companies to create the bitcoin ATM.

OKLink: And now how many bitcoin ATMs are there around Korea?

Evelyn: There are now around 20,000 all around Korea.

coinplug atms.png

 (All the dots represent where a bitcoin ATM can be found throughout Korea)

OKLink: That’s amazing.

From my understanding there is a shift in focus on using the bitcoin technology to enter the remittance industry. Can you tell me about that?

Evelyn: There is a large amount of migrant workers in South Korea, with the numbers totaling close to 1 million. Most overseas remittances are done via SWIFT network like they are in many other countries, which means they take longer and have a high fee. By using our bitcoin ATMs, we are able to use the blockchain technology and bypass the third party, lowering time and cost.

coinplug bitcoin atm.jpg

(A Bitcoin ATM in Korea. Photo credit: Coindesk)

OKLink: Sounds like a much more efficient way to receive money from different countries. With the ATMs, what’s the easiest way for a user to pick up cash?

Evelyn: As ATMs are located mostly in convenience stores such as 7-11 and CU, it is very easy for people to access the ATMs and pick up their cash there. People can also send directly to our mobile wallet, speeding up the process even more.

OKLink: Great, that actually leads us to the last and most exciting thing about Coinplug, your newest product which is the Coinplug Bitcoin Wallet. Since there are so many different types of mobile wallets out there, what makes Coinplug’s different from the crowd?

coinplug wallet

(Coinplug’s Bitcoin Mobile Wallet in the iOS App Store.)

Evelyn: In terms of bitcoin, we offer real-time bitcoin trading. Users can set if they want to buy/sell their bitcoin at “market price”, where they can set the price, or they can “instant buy/sell”, where we set the price for them and they go by these prices.

What’s also great is because we work with OKLink, any global company can send money to the Coinplug wallet directly, as well as withdraw through a linked ATM in Korea.

OKLink: Yes, we are excited about that development as well. So how do people actually send to the Coinplug wallet?

Evelyn: The sender wires local currency to their local company; provided this company is also partners with OKLink, we can then receive the funds and send to the recipient’s mobile wallet for them to receive in Korean Won.

OKLink: What kinds of people are you seeing using the send service the most?

Evelyn: There are about 100,000 foreign students studying in Korea, who are all receiving monthly allowances from their home countries. We are seeing a growth in, and looking to target, the parents of the foreign students, who find this product to be very useful.

OKLink: What are the long-term plans for the Coinplug mobile wallet?

Evelyn: We hope to soon be able to have multiple wallets that are feature-specific for different demographics, for example, a different wallet for foreign migrant workers in Korea.

OKLink: Thank you so much for your time Evelyn, we look forward to seeing the Coinplug mobile wallet and the business grow!

Partners of OKLink can now send directly in real-time to Korea through Coinplug’s mobile wallet. For more information on Coinplug and their products, please visit their website.

Features Highlight: Automated Compliance Checks

As part of the OKLink stance of being the fastest, cheapest and easiest cross-border settlement network, we have a rigorous background check on all joining companies to ensure we work with compliant businesses that match our AML/ATF/Sanctions Program. Similar to the industry we are trying to modernize however, much of the compliance process is outdated and tedious, with compliance checks often taking so long that the customer forgets or worse, gives up registration. Frankly, we think this delay is counter-intuitive in the onboarding process – we want everyone to be able to have the OKLink experience without barrier.

So we sought to change how things are done. Using machine learning, we automated our onboarding process so that businesses can use OKLink immediately for small transfers without any sacrifice to our compliance standards. The change in pace has allowed companies to connect to other countries and start expanding their own businesses on a global scale with immediacy, while we can continue to uphold our company compliance standards. This reduces friction and improves user experience overall.

We hope this update has provided you with insight on our dedication to our goal of being the best cross-border settlement network. If you have yet to create an OKLink account, sign up here.

PS: Reading this blog and feeling like playing around with all our functions and corridors without affecting your actual business? Then play in the OKLink Sandbox with no repercussions – find out more here.

more network.png

Take a Look Inside OKLink’s New Hong Kong Office!

Exciting things are happening at OKLink! We are glad to announce the opening of our new office at the heart of Hong Kong. Our new 3,500 sq. ft. space in Causeway Bay includes room for 45 people, with fantastic views of the city.

In the last few months alone, our team has more than doubled in size. We now have 18 full time employees in Hong Kong working on business development, strategy, compliance, marketing and operations, and a dedicated team in Beijing focused on technology, product and design. You can read about our outstanding team here, and apply if you’re interested in joining us.

With five times the space of our old office, the new office reflects OKLink’s commitment to drive future growth and to fulfill our vision to make cross-border payments as seamless and inclusive as sending a text message abroad. We are bracing for aggressive growth of our business and team.

Designed to complement the panoramic views of the harbor and let in vast amount of daylight, the office includes open plan seating, collaborative break-out areas, and a few modern wood and glass meeting rooms that oversee the bustling city. We also have a fabulous snack corner and a full fledged espresso machine for the coffee addicts in the team.

OKLink office

We will soon be hosting some drinks and events for clients and friends in the new space! Take a first look:

OKLink New Hong Kong Office Info

Phone number: (852) 3758 2732
Address: Unit 2101-02, Sino Plaza, 255-257 Gloucester Road, Causeway Bay

Contact us at if you have any questions.
Best, Team OKLink

Features Highlight: Introducing the OKLink Sandbox

Hi there,

We’re excited to introduce you to the OKLink Sandbox, a safe testing version of the OKLink platform for all customers to freely try our service without affecting your actual business.

test oklink.png

To help you thoroughly experience our transfer service with no boundaries, we’ve set up trial accounts with test OKDs – these test OKDs are purely for trial purposes and have no actual monetary value. Whether you are a new or experienced user of OKLink, we believe there is always something new to be discovered on our platform.

Try out the OKLink Sandbox by contacting us at for your trial account. Alternatively if you would like to try the OKLink Sandbox API, contact us at and we’ll get you ready to go with a trial account for the API.

Happy testing,

OKLink announces incentive guarantee for MSO-licensed partners in 10 countries

We bear good news!

Starting today, OKLink will provide a minimum income guarantee for newly joined licensed partners in select countries. We are looking for individuals, remittance shops, cash outlets, mobile wallets, e-commerce platforms, local banks, multinational companies and other, who satisfy the following criteria:

  1. Licensed MSO (Money Services Operator) business in respective country
  2. Able to receive and send local currency to local bank accounts
  3. Able to process transactions within one business day

Once signed up with us, qualified businesses will instantly be connected to 100+ partners in 40 countries globally. Partners can earn money by processing each cross-border transaction order – either by collecting local currency from or paying out to local customers. OKLink will guarantee a minimum volume of transaction flow each month, in turn underwrite up to US$3,000 extra income for each qualified new partner.

Interested in joining and adding revenue stream to your business? All you have to do is connect the world to your country!

Join today




If there are any questions, please contact us at


OKLink has been using blockchain to connect and empower companies all over the world, big and small, to create an open infrastructure for cross-border payments. Since our platform went live in August 2016, transaction volumes have at least doubled every month, and we need reliable partners all across the world to facilitate the fastest cross-border money transfer services in multiple payout formats, and create a top-notch user experience for end users sending money back home.

Read on to see what we do before launching every corridor.

Feature Highlight: Keeping Track of Your OKD Balance

OKLink uses OKD as a USD-backed digital token to enable cross-border transfers to move seamlessly on our platform. Sometimes, just like with actual money, it becomes hard to keep track how much OKD you still have in your account.

We’ve built a function in your Account Settings so that you can enable a reminder notification from us whenever your OKD balance dips below a certain amount. Here’s how to use this tool:

How to Enable OKD Notifications from OKLink:

  1. Login to your account.
  2. From the top right dropdown menu, select Account Settings.
  3. Scroll down until you reach OKD Balance Warning.

In your account, you can set a notification amount – think of this as your baseline amount of OKDs. Once your total amount drops below this number, we will automatically send you a notification to remind you to top up your account.


This way, you will not run into the danger of not having enough OKDs before your next transfer (and thus delaying any further transactions!)

How to Disable OKD Notifications:

We know, getting system notifications can seem like we’re nagging you (we’re not). But if you’d prefer not having messages from us about your OKD amount balance, feel free to toggle this function off on the Account Settings page.


As always, if there are any questions, please do ask us at!

Team OKLink

Send FREE to Singapore through OKLink!


As our network expands and more transfers are being made out from Singapore, our transfer partners in Singapore have given us the confidence to lower the transfer rates to 0% to offset the demand for OK Dollars.

That means you, as a new or existing user of OKLink, get to send to Singapore for FREE for all of 2017*! Transfers can be up to $100,000USD per month.

What are you waiting for? Start your transfer now!

*Due to overwhelming popularity, this promotion has ended as of 15 July 2017. 

Nepal: OKLink launches same-day delivery to 118 banks

It’s official – Nepal is here.

nepal-remittance-infographicAll 100+ partners on our network can now transfer up to US$10,000 to 118 banks in Nepal for a total delivery fee of 0.6% + 25.0 NPR, calculated at the mid-market exchange rate with no hidden charges.

Overseas remittances to Nepal make up a key part of the country’s economy, equivalent to a staggering 31.8 percent of gross domestic product according to 2015 data from the World Bank.

Using OKLink, independent transfer companies including mobile wallets can allow customers to send money to Nepal much quicker and at a rate much cheaper than other options available in the market today.

Here are more details on sending to Nepal with OKLink:


Payouts are currently available at 118 banks, including:

agriculture_development_bank_limited      himalbank      nebil-bank

nepal-bank      siddhartha-bank      standard-chartered