They're Game

Mobile App BUX: Trading Made Simple While Retaining Clients

As gamification becomes an industry buzzword, trading providers find fun ways to engage user behavior and retain clients

There’s been a lot of talk about gamification and the growing mobile usage trends in recent years. Not only was the “app economy” born, but a number of small startup companies have revolutionized the way consumers gain access to products which they use on a daily basis. The retail financial industry is not an exception.

One of the companies which has managed to embed gamification elements into a new approach towards retail traders is the Dutch mobile app BUX. Users have the ability to trade on various markets with virtual money (funBUX) and for residents of the Netherlands and the UK with real money (seriousBUX).

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Complex platforms, charts, and numerous assets make are intimidating novice retail investors. This is where BUX ans their likes step in.

After co-founding the leading online brokerage for retail investors in the Netherlands, BinckBank, the founder and CEO of BUX, Nick Bortot, has taken on a more challenging task. The goal of the newly founded company is to make investing easier for inexperienced traders.

Limiting Risks and Retaining Clients

Complex platforms, charts, and numerous assets have been among the issues which novice retail investors are constantly encountering, making them hesitant to commit the time and finances necessary to make progress in investing.

What BUX is aiming to do is to create an interface which makes it much easier for inexperienced traders to invest, while not losing their funds quickly.

Mr. Bortot shared with Forex Magnates’ reporters that BUX is very focused on responsible trading. He explained that the model where brokers were making money because their customers were losing was unsustainable as it would sooner or later be put under regulatory scrutiny.

Since the company is continuing the development of its product, BUX has chosen to roll out its services across different countries on a gradual basis. The costs associated with supporting the infrastructure for traders from many countries and the localization efforts have prompted the firm to offer its services only in the Netherlands and the UK so far.

What BUX is aiming to do is to create an interface which makes it much easier for inexperienced traders to invest, while not losing their funds quickly.

At the end of 2015, the company is looking to raise additional funds aiming to expand to other European countries and possibly even beyond that.

For real money trading, BUX is operating in a partnership with ayondo, providing its regulatory umbrella and the data feeds for users of the app. The partnership is expanding throughout Europe, as BUX is looking to launch in more markets across the continent. The company aims to team up with other partners outside of Europe.

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Speaking to Forex Magnates, the company’s co-founder and CEO Nick Bortot shared, “We’re looking to build partnerships with companies in different regions of the world. We have already forged our partnership with ayondo for Europe, but in the future we are aiming to roll out our product in other regions around the world.”

This is the reason why BUX has become a success in the two countries where the product is currently available.

6 Months Facts and Figures

The founders of BUX believed that many more people would would be keen to trade on the financial markets, than the group of people currently involved. The reason for this assumption was because the majority of people find investment platforms way too complex, too time consuming, too risky or too expensive.

“we aim at rolling out our product in other regions around the world,” CEO Bortot states

So enter BUX, one of the first investment apps aiming to make trading more understandable, simple, while keeping it relatively safe and a lot of fun for its users. The iOS app was first launched in the Netherlands last September with the UK following in the middle of October 2014. The BUX Android app has just recently been launched.

The company has announced that so far there have been 100,000 ‘installs’ of the BUX app, with the goal of appealing to inexperienced investors being widely met, as 76% of the users have little or no investment experience.

Total traded value on BUX
Total traded Value on BUX, € Mln


In addition to the sheer number of users who have little or no experience with financial markets, the demographics of the customer base is also very attractive with BUX achieving to attract younger investors towards its client base.

According to data published by the company, the average user of BUX is much younger than the regular retail trader. The average trader age at retail outfits is about 45 years, while at BUX 59% of users are younger than 34.

BUX has about about 4,000 people who have already opened seriousBUX (real money) accounts. According to information provided by the company, BUX has grown to around 15,000 real money transactions per week. The temporary decline in the trend is due to a seasonal decline in volumes around the Christmas and New Year’s break.

Number of seriousBUX trades
Number of SeriousBUX Trades

Up until now, the record amount of total traded value through BUX transactions amounts to almost 90 million monthly. Both the iOS and the Android app are developed internally by a team of 8 developers with the company currently employing about 20 people.

From more than 2,000 entries, BUX was included in the London Fintech50 – a list of the 50 most promising European financial startups.

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