Reading Time: 3 minutesThis article was first published by\u00a0vulcanpost.com Many mentors were supportive yet sceptical over what we are trying to do.However, every threat is an opportunity and we had great mentors who supported us with advice and connections.\u2013 Jake Goh, co-founder of RateXJake Goh, Davis Gay and Lim Jing Rong are the co-founders of RateX, a payment system that lets you pay only the item price (in SGD) when you shop overseas online.The currency exchange is done based on currency exchange websites like XE i.e. no hidden bank or credit card charges. Think of it as PayPal, except as a Google Chrome extension that will correct for your costs when you hit \u2018checkout\u2019.\u201cWith credit cards, there is a lack of transparency in terms of exchange rate [and] most people don\u2019t know how much they pay in foreign currency till the bill comes,\u201d Jake says.\u201cGiven our free, lowest exchange rates, we are definitely the cheapest solution for overseas e-commerce\u00a0payment. No strings attached and works for all payment modes.\u201dSince their launch, the team has already helped shoppers save S$34,029 across 2,500 transactions.In addition, they\u2019ve also\u00a0raised close to S$500,000\u00a0from \u201cNUS Enterprise, SPRING Singapore and angel investors\u201d.Not bad for a\u00a0startup\u00a0that hasn\u2019t even celebrated its first birthday.A Tricky StartAll 3 co-founders met during their National University of Singapore\u2019s Overseas Colleges (NOC) in Silicon Valley and New York. Upon their return, they transformed their experiences into RateX.Jake handles the non-technical aspects of the business, and the weekly office cleaning.Jing Rong and Davis are in charge of the front-end and back-end\u00a0related development respectively.Image Credit: Jake Goh\u201cWe started during our final year in\u00a0university,\u201d Jake explains.\u201cMy co-founders continued with their honours degree, [but] I committed to this full-time, giving up my honours for it. That didn\u2019t make my family too happy,\u201d he laughs.But after they were featured on The Straits Times, his family were convinced they were \u201cdoing something meaningful\u201d.\u201cOur family and friends all thought we were going to join a big name in the Valley,\u201d Jing Rong and Davis share.\u201cIt took a while to convince them we were serious, and it wasn\u2019t just a side project. Now they are amazingly supportive.\u201dOf course, there were people who viewed their idea with scepticism.\u201cThe biggest obstacle was learning how to operate as a payments company. Most undergraduates are ill-equipped with starting payments and it\u2019s common fact that payments are by-products of other companies, e.g. GrabPay.\u201d\u201cHowever, every threat is an opportunity and we had great mentors who supported us with advice and connections. For instance, we were provided with space at The Hangar within NUS Enterprise and now we are located at a cosy office in Blk 71.\u201d\u201cThe local ecosystem has always been supportive and easy to tap into.\u201dRoots In NOC\u201cNOC gave us the opportunities to open up our eyes and learn from and with, US\u2019 entrepreneurial ecosystem,\u201d Jake reflects.Unlike Jing Rong and Davis, Jake was directly involved with another entrepreneurial venture \u2013 PlayDate \u2013 a remote controlled toy allowing pet owners to interact with their pets.And there he also launched a successful Kickstarter where he raised over $1.08 million, and met co-founders Kevin and Anthony, both of whom he now calls his \u201cbest mentors\u201d.\u201cBefore NOC, I had zero experience about\u00a0startups. I learnt through internships and courses,\u201d says Davis.One important lesson was that startups should disrupt quickly.\u00a0If you are not quick enough, another startup or the ones who are supposed to be disrupted, will do it.Being located in the mecca of entrepreneurship gave him a front row seat to distinguishing \u201ca\u00a0great startup from a good one,\u201d Jing Rong adds.\u201cEven the most promising ones fail, while the small ones succeed.\u201dWhat\u2019s important is not your background, your education, or how long you have been in the industry. It\u2019s the grit to keep going when the going gets tough, and the discipline to not get complacent when you are ahead.High Ratings For The FutureWith fundings of almost $500k, the team plans to explore expansion with new merchants and new currencies in UK, UK and China among others.Some of RateX\u2019s merchants \/ Image Credit: RateX\u201cWe also plan to launch a store where users can compare and find the cheapest deals across the world. This way, they\u2019ll know\u00a0where\u00a0to get a best deal, and know\u00a0how\u00a0to pay less for it.\u201d\u201cOur 5 year goal is to become the cheapest place for Singaporeans to shop from.\u201d\u201cWe want to flatten purchases, and negate the price difference between currencies and countries, offline and online. And we will be at the forefront of it.\u201dArticle Credit: Samantha TayBe part of our Special Deals Group today! 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