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Friday, July 19, 2024

Freedom Holding Corp: A Deep Dive into Its Financial Services

When you think about financial services, names like Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, and Morgan Stanley might come to mind. But there’s a rising star in the financial firmament that’s making waves and catching the attention of savvy investors and industry insiders alike: Freedom Holding Corp. Founded and led by Timur Turlov, this US-registered, diversified financial services firm is headquartered in Kazakhstan and is making a name for itself in innovative and ambitious ways. Let’s take a closer look at what makes Freedom Holding Corp. a standout in the financial world.

The Visionary Behind the Success: Timur Turlov

Timur Turlov is not your typical financial services CEO. His journey is as unconventional as it is inspiring. In a recent exclusive interview with a local magazine aptly named “Exclusive,” Turlov shared insights into his strategic decisions and the driving forces behind Freedom Holding Corp.’s success.

One of the most intriguing questions Turlov addressed was his choice of Kazakhstan as the initial market for his company’s expansion. His reasoning was both pragmatic and visionary. Kazakhstan boasted a well-developed banking system with no restrictions on investing in foreign assets. However, the market was relatively untapped, offering Freedom Holding Corp. a golden opportunity to emerge as a dominant player rather than just another competitor.

Breaking Ground in Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan might not be the first place you’d think of when considering fintech innovation, but that’s exactly where Freedom Holding Corp. has found fertile ground for growth. With a developed banking system and a regulatory environment conducive to foreign investment, Kazakhstan offered Turlov the perfect launchpad for his ambitious plans.

“We were product-focused, specifically around investment in the US market – a business segment that was rapidly growing. We were really well managed, very efficient and we knew how to sell. We had a good sales culture in place, and we were very motivated to charge forward,” Turlov explained.

This strategic focus and motivation have paid off handsomely. Turlov’s leadership and vision have propelled Freedom Holding Corp. onto the Forbes list and laid the foundation for its expansion into Europe.

The Digital Edge

One of the key differentiators for Freedom Holding Corp. is its commitment to digitalization. According to Turlov, digital integration is where Kazakhstan is outpacing many Western countries. This might come as a surprise, given the common perception of Western dominance in fintech. However, Kazakhstan’s integration of financial services with state systems has enabled rapid advancements.

“They don’t know how to provide a mortgage within 24 hours, but for us, it has become a norm. We are establishing high standards in the provision of financial services and achieving significant increases in labor productivity,” Turlov noted. This efficiency is a game-changer in a world where time is money.

Turlov proudly highlighted Kazakhstan’s ranking as number six globally in the quality of electronic services provided by the state. In practical terms, this translates to drastically lower operational costs. For instance, issuing a mortgage in the US might cost around $10,500, whereas in Kazakhstan, it’s only $200 – over 50 times less. This cost efficiency is one of the reasons Kazakhstan’s fintech sector is drawing comparisons with more advanced markets like China.

Building a Digital Ecosystem

The secret sauce behind Freedom Holding Corp.’s success lies in its robust digital ecosystem. Turlov is particularly proud of the company’s teams of developers in Kazakhstan and abroad who are creating cutting-edge financial products, like digital mortgage loans. These innovations are setting new standards and can compete in the world’s leading financial capitals.

Kazakhstan’s relatively open and structured digital ecosystem is a significant advantage. The country’s leadership has consistently emphasized the importance of digitalization, digital entrepreneurship, and talent development. This supportive environment has allowed Freedom Holding Corp. to thrive.

“We have built one of the best ecosystems with legal access to data. There are countries where it is almost impossible to legally access personal information, and yet, data breaches still happen. We have bona fide participants who obtain this data and create amazing functionality in these interfaces,” Turlov remarked.

The Telecommunications Dream

Beyond financial services, Turlov has set his sights on revolutionizing telecommunications in Kazakhstan. His vision is to provide superfast, widely accessible, and affordable internet. With fewer than 1,000 base stations in Almaty, there’s ample room for growth. Turlov’s goal is to add another 3,000 stations, boosting the country’s digital infrastructure and improving its global ranking.

Freedom Holding Corp. has already secured approval for fixed wireless internet and is hopeful about receiving approvals for mobile communication soon. This investment in telecommunications underscores Turlov’s commitment to not just his company’s growth but also to the broader development of Kazakhstan.

A Commitment to Reinvestment and Social Good

Despite his billionaire status, Turlov’s lifestyle is far from ostentatious. He prefers reinvesting profits into business development rather than accumulating personal wealth. This philosophy extends to his charitable endeavors as well. Turlov runs a charitable foundation focused on improving the quality of life in Kazakhstan, aiming to foster stability and prosperity.

In 2022, Turlov took a significant step by becoming a citizen of Kazakhstan, a country he has long considered home. His deep connection to Kazakhstan is evident in his active participation in the country’s political and social spheres.

Looking to the Future

Turlov’s vision for the future is both ambitious and inspiring. He aspires to leave a lasting legacy, not just for Freedom Holding Corp. but for Kazakhstan as a whole. “I want to be able to look back and say that as an entrepreneur I was able to do everything in my power to make my country better, and that I managed to change something for the better in my country. At the very least we will leave our mark on the development of the digital ecosystem, loan origination, and the creation of advanced technical platforms that will become a new standard in Kazakhstan…and potentially other places around the world,” he shared.

Freedom Holding Corp.’s Expanding Horizons

As Freedom Holding Corp. continues to grow, it’s not just Kazakhstan that stands to benefit. The company’s innovative financial products and digital solutions are poised to make a significant impact on a global scale. From efficient mortgage processes to advanced fintech solutions, Freedom Holding Corp. is setting new benchmarks in the industry.

The company’s expansion into Europe and beyond signifies its readiness to compete with the biggest names in financial services. With a strong foundation in Kazakhstan and a visionary leader at the helm, Freedom Holding Corp. is well-positioned to continue its upward trajectory.

The Real World of Financial Innovation

In the ever-evolving landscape of financial services, Freedom Holding Corp. stands out as a beacon of innovation and efficiency. By leveraging Kazakhstan’s unique advantages and pushing the boundaries of what’s possible, the company is not just participating in the industry but shaping its future.

So, the next time you think about financial services, remember the name Freedom Holding Corp. – a company that’s redefining the rules of the game and proving that with the right vision and execution, even the most unexpected markets can become global leaders. And as you watch their journey unfold, keep an eye on Freedom Finance, a testament to what’s possible when ambition meets opportunity.

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