Freetrade Meetup: New Features, Crypto & Breakeven 2024

Freetrade Community Meetup 3rd April 2023

Table of Content

3rd April 2023, Freetrade held another of their community meetups, this time at their WeWork Location (10 Devonshire Square).

Adam Dodds (CEO & Founder), Viktor Nebehaj (CMO & Co-Founder) & James Bell (VP Product) all presented & participated in the Q/A with Omar Farag asking question from the audience.

Clips from the event will be soon be available on the community forum here.

Growth to Efficiency (Breakeven?)

With a different market landscape to last year, the first focus was from Growth to Efficiency. Following, the recent job cuts of 15% of staff Freetrade have made changes in many areas moving away from rapid growth to better efficiencies including:

Despite this, they were optimistic that a smaller team has allowed them to release features quicker. With their new CTO Shahid Naveed already bringing many major savings.

Freetrade announced their aim to breakeven January 2024 but are already on track to break even ahead of schedule.

This breakeven point would mean that additional funding rounds would no longer be required; however Adam was clear that funding, despite not being necessary, may be used to build cash reserves or as a future growth tool.

What about Crypto?

In recent crowdfunding campaigns, it was announced that Freetrade would work on providing cryptocurrencies through their app. However, due to their recent team reductions this work has now been put on hold. This pause was also attributed to the fact there is no clear regulation in the UK (which was expected by the team last year).

Unfortunately for some, but Freetrade will be putting Crypto on the back burner until the UK regulation landscape clears up.

New Features (Soon)

There were 3 major features announced, all of which should be rolled out by the end of May 2023:

Freetrade Direct Debit Deposits

A long awaited feature, but Freetrade will now be supporting automatic deposits to your freetrade cash balance via direct debit. This is due to be rolling out by May 2023.

Recurring Orders from Cash Balance

Releasing alongside direct debits is "recurring orders", the ability to automatically purchase one or more stocks on a regular basis. These features were hinted to be the start of many more "Portfolio Management" options later down the line.

Percentage based portfolio re-balancing was also hinted to, but was not confirmed.

Electronic Proxy Voting

The next major short term announcement was proxy voting for US stocks via the Freetrade app. This allows you to participate in any shareholder votes that are taking part for US stocks you hold.

This is a unique feature that the majority of other apps don't have yet. Once again, this feature will be rolling out by May 2023.

Future Features


The next feature that was James' main focus was JISAs (Junior ISAs for under 18s). The Q&A session shed some light as to how the current demographic of Freetrade users are slowly moving towards the age where they have families and children - hence the team think these children accounts are a great opportunity. Other reasons were given such as JISAs being a lower competition market than other account types with a much longer estimated account duration (potentially up to 18 years with a single provider).

No date was given as to when they will be ready however they are expected before the end of the year.


The next focus after JISAs for Freetrade is LISA (Lifetime ISAs) that can be used by an individual for either a house deposit or as an alternate retirement vehicle.

Once again no date was given however expected to follow shortly after JISAs.

From Notion to Confluence

When talking about the use of ChatGPT inside Freetrade, James spoke about a project he had peer-programmed with chatGPT: to migrate pages from Notion to Confluence. Alluding to the fact that Freetrade will no longer be using Notion as their internal documentation site? Is this due to cost savings with confluence or other reasons? We can only speculate but definitely an interesting observations.

Will other upstarts follow suit and migrate away from Notion despite continual feature releases?

Post Event Conversations

As with all events, people stay to talk once the presentation is finished. This is where a lot of exciting information is announced (or maybe leaked). After the event I (along with a 5 or 6 others) managed to speak to Viktor. The following topics were discussed however please note that these were unofficial conversations and hence not all the following may be an accurate representation:

Multi Currency Accounts

Viktor discussed how Freetrade do want to provide multi-currency accounts however it was pointed out that building a clean UI that supports multiple currencies will be a difficult undertaking. Currently the App already has a drop-down for each account type, if they were then to add a dropdown for each currency inside each account type, this could get very confusing.

There seems to be lots of technical challenges with this feature and hence it doesn't sound like it'll be coming soon.

It was noted however that multi-currency accounts is the USP (Unique Selling Point) of many competitors including Lightyear so adding this feature would eliminate the unique selling point of those competitors.

The main reason this would be useful is that once you pay the initial FX (Foreign Exchange) fee to get your currency converted to dollars, you will no longer have to pay FX fees every time you buy & sell US stocks.

Currently, you pay FX to buy a US stock, then when you sell it you instantly have to pay FX fees again to put that money into another US stock.

It is worth noting however that FX fees are a large portion of Freetrade's revenue so adding this feature would reduce that revenue. To get around this, it was suggested by a community member that a "Pro" membership option should be added for £50-£100 a month for extra features such as this.

It was also recommended (and agreed by Viktor) that FX fees should have some sort of cap of around £50-£100, as one community individual reported FX fees of over £2000 on a large £600,000 trade.

Selling Tech Stack as a Service

One of Freetrade's unique advantages is the time spent on it's Full Stack Architecture. It is directly connected to the London Stock Exchange and as such benefits of great economies of scale as well as agility to add new features. It was rumoured a while ago that Freetrade may sell their tech stack as a service to other providers.

However, after asking Viktor, he replied that moving focus from their current B2C app (Business to Consumer) to selling their tech stack as a B2B (Business to Business) service could come across to the public as showing weakness in their current B2C product offering. Their main focus for now is the consumer application however they haven't ruled this out in the distant future.

Freetrade is hiring outside the UK

I joined at the end of this conversation but by the sounds of it, Freetrade are looking to high developers in lower-cost countries. Hiring has started in Hungary and is expected to expand to Portugal in the future as high skill professionals are cheaper to hire in these countries than London.

Tech Blogs

Finally, it was recognised that the tech blogs that Freetrade used to release often have not been released recently. This is due to the head count reductions as well as the long approval process to get blogs published. Viktor acknowledged the benefits of these regular posts and suggested a post be released this week about the major improvements to the Android app.

These mobile improvements come along side a £10k per month reduction in Google Cloud costs.

Join me and invest with Freetrade. Get started with a free share worth £10 to £100. The probability is weighted, so more expensive shares will be rarer. T&Cs apply. Capital at risk. https://magic.freetrade.io/join/ryan/5e1e0daa

Thank you once again to the Freetrade team for hosting the event (and the free merch), it was a pleasure meeting everyone and looking forward to seeing you all next time.