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St. Pete-based trading platform enters Mexico with acquisition

Mark Parker

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Webull Corporation officials recently made the company's first significant acquisition since relocating headquarters to St. Petersburg. Photos provided.

Webull, a popular stock trading application with over 40 million downloads, is increasing its international footprint with the recent acquisition of Mexican investment platform Flink.

While Webull Corporation has Hong Kong roots, the company relocated its New York headquarters to St. Petersburg in November 2022. It offers low-commission online trading and cash management services.

Mexico City-based Flink allows its country’s users to invest in fractional shares of U.S.-listed companies without paying additional fees. Anthony Denier, CEO of Webull, said the acquisition will add to the platform’s “enormous global following.”

“Webull’s popularity in Mexico is based solely on our platform being used for research and information purposes,” Denier told the Catalyst. “It was a no-brainer for us to add brokerage services to our thousands of loyal users in Mexico.”

Anthony Denier, CEO of Webull Corporation.

The company bought all of Flink’s outstanding shares and also acquired Mexican brokerage firm Vifaru Casa de Bolsa as part of the transaction. Webull did not disclose additional details of the deal, announced Nov. 28.

Flink has raised $70 million in funding since it launched in 2017. It listed 1.6 million users in August 2021, the latest data provided.

Denier said Mexico’s young population embraces technology and financial independence. “Access to best-in-class products and platforms – regardless of net worth – will be a game-changer for investors,” he said.

“Webull focuses on financial education and powerful tools and analytics to make anyone a better investor,” Denier added. “Our platform is fully customizable to cater to first-time investors and experienced pros alike.”

That untapped potential is why a group of young professionals launched Flink in the first place. In 2021, Co-founder and CEO Sergio Jimenez Amozurrutia told TechCrunch it felt unfair that only a “tiny fraction” of his country’s over 120 million people had access to capital markets.

When announcing the acquisition, Ruben Guerrero, Webull’s head of Latin America, noted Mexico’s demand for tech-based wealth-building solutions. He said Flink’s early success proved the market’s growth potential.

“Flink is thrilled to be joining the Webull family, as our two companies share similar visions and values around democratizing access for the everyday investor,” Flink co-founder Sergio Jiminez said in a prepared statement. “The synergies among Webull and Flink are obvious and will provide a great service to Mexican investors.”

Webull launched U.S. operations in 2018. Company officials bought marketing firm Catalina’s 157,755-square-foot-headquarters in the Carillon business park for $29.5 million last year.

Webull offers online investment education to 180 countries. Its trading platform is available in the U.S., the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, South Africa, Australia, Indonesia and now, Mexico.

Denier said its St. Petersburg headquarters would serve as “a technology and operations hub to assist the team on the ground in Mexico.” He also feels bullish on the move to Tampa Bay.

“St. Petersburg gives us the opportunity to tap into a thriving urban community while still allowing space for growth,” Denier said. “The talent pool is deep, and the local community is diverse. There is an immense feeling of optimism surrounding the Tampa/St. Pete area that Webull is thrilled to contribute into.”

 

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