A Conversation with Gil Ben Hur, CEO of The5ers, a Prop Trading Firm 

June 27, 2024

Ori Levy

Head of Business Development

Watch the filmed interview here or scroll down to read the written version.

Hello everyone, and welcome! I’m Ori Levy, Head of the Israel Business Unit at Fibonatix, and this is Gabi Behiri, one of our executive account managers. Fibonatix is a PSP company, regulated by the FCA, providing payment solutions to European businesses. We are excited to have with us one of our clients, Gil Ben Hur, the founder and CEO of The5ers, one of the leading prop trading companies in the industry. Today, we are going to talk about The5ers’ journey with Fibonatix, the challenges they’ve faced, and how our payment solutions have empowered them to achieve success and progress. 

Gil: The5ers is a company with its own investment accounts, seeking talented traders to trade on our behalf. We scout and recruit talented traders from all over the world and put them through an assessment process. If they are found to be qualified, we onboard them into our trading environment and provide them with funds. Today, we have two brands in our proprietary trading firm space: The 5ers, which focuses on CFD trading, and TradeThePool which specialises in US stocks. Both brands operate independently for their respective audiences, but they are managed under “Five Percent Online Limited”, the company that holds these two brands. I’m happy to say that so far, we are dominating the trading space. To answer your second question, in the past, I traded individually and worked as a day trader. I was looking for a way to enhance my skills. I couldn’t find any company that would give me the option to trade on its behalf. I did some portfolio management for friends and family, but it wasn’t enough. 

I was also involved in a team of skilled traders; we operated globally and wanted to find a way to collaborate within a singular trading account. Over time, I created the business infrastructure and developed administrative guidelines for remote operations and profit-sharing among us. We traded together for about a month, and I decided we should modify the project so that more traders from different disciplines could join and use this platform. I continued my learning process and developed my own platform until “The5ers” was finally created. I think what makes The5ers stand out is that we come with the right intentions. Today, the industry is very saturated with competition. Many companies enter this market with different motivations. The5ers works to provide real value for traders. We empower them and provide training and support throughout the entire process. Trading is a skill that you develop over the years. It’s like being a professional athlete. You always need to work on your skills and techniques to get better. 

Gil: During the pandemic and post-pandemic period, the banking and payment processor environment wasn’t very open to remote working. Most institutions and card processors required us to be physically present for interviews and personal communications, which was very challenging for us. Another issue we faced was that, when we started, this industry was very young, and we had a unique business model. Payment providers didn’t understand us, making it hard for them to explain our business to acquirers. We needed people who would believe in what we were trying to achieve and see the end game for the service we were providing. The biggest challenge, however, was the fact that we are located in Israel. In Israel, the local credit card companies don’t have the licenses to provide international services.

We couldn’t process more than 30% of international transactions, so we needed to go abroad.
To overcome these challenges, we had to create a structure that allowed us to establish a presence in Europe. For that, we needed a partner to help us negotiate with local European acquirers. Initially, we worked with large payment processors, but they weren’t reliable for us. They always imposed strict KYC requirements, we didn’t have direct contact, it wasn’t safe, and eventually, they terminated our account. When we started working with Fibonatix, we realised we needed to create a UK entity to complete the onboarding process. Fibonatix guided us through the process. It took time, but eventually we succeeded. I believe that Fibonatix’s care and genuine willingness to understand our unique business model enabled us to overcome our challenges.

Gil: Today, we have many PSPs approaching us and offering their services, but the main challenge remains the fact that financial services don’t really know how to classify us. Every now and then, they have questions about our business, and we need to go through lengthy processes, filling out forms and answering detailed questions repeatedly. All of this interrupts our daily routine. That’s why it is so important to have a partner that acts as a firewall for your business, handling everything with the financial institutions. This way, as a business owner, you don’t have to spend all your time dealing with these tasks, which take a lot of time and attention.

Gil: Fibonatix provides our most endorsed solutions, we know you are always working behind the scenes, fighting for us, and representing our needs and interests. Since we are a very dynamic company, always developing new services and business models, and creating new brands, we must have a partner who is almost part of our team, providing us with timely solutions and maintaining clear and available daily communication.

Gil: I think this industry is going to grow with more serious and professional players stepping in. Those who make this environment less professional will step out because the barrier to entry will be much higher. We will gain more trust from our financial partners as well as our clients. I definitely see this service becoming more dominant in the trading space because it addresses a true need. It’s similar to what happened in the e-commerce industry, where today almost anyone can sell products from their home through online activities. We are doing the same with the trading world. Our traders can trade and become professionals from anywhere they want in the world. This is why this industry is here to stay, although it needs to become more mature and better regulated. 

Gil: Fibonatix provides the whole package in one solution. We get the technology and the ease of connecting to different cards and acquirers in a single technological solution. This is important because we feel safer knowing we can operate with several different credit card suppliers, so if something happens to one, we still have the other.

Your solution also meets our different geographical needs, so we benefit from an agile and modular solution. Finally, we receive personal service from a partner who truly understands our business and wants to see us grow. Together, we can find creative solutions and achieve our goals. We don’t have this support with any other payment solutions provider. 

Gil: I recommend businesses to work with you, especially businesses with a global approach and clientele because in our experience, we find it very valuable to have your approach. People in your office are really helpful and understand what we’re trying to achieve, acting as true partners. I believe in this kind of collaboration, where businesses come together, creating value for each other. 

To gain deeper insights into the proprietary trading industry and learn how Fibonatix’s payment solutions can empower your business, watch the full filmed interview here or contact us for a meeting below.