- UK fintech Revolut has secured its European banking licence and can begin operations in 2019.
- The company is expanding into Asia Pacific and North America next year.
- Founded in 2015, Revolut can now start accepting direct deposits of customers salaries’ and will offer personal and business loans.
Formed just three years ago Revolut already has 3.2 million customers and it looks set to gain more after gaining a European banking licence.
Valued at $US1.7 billion and attracting investment interest from Softbank, Revolut is Europe’s newest bank.
Customers can now get an overdraft and deposit their salaries, protected up to €100,000 under the European Deposit Insurance Scheme. Revolut will soon offer personal and business loans to customers in addition to its existing offering of spending in foreign currencies at real-time exchange rates.
The challenger bank is aiming for 100 million customers in the next five years and is expanding into Asia Pacific and North America next year. It’s expected to take three to six months for Revolut to passport its banking services into larger markets and will initially focus on the United Kingdom, France, and Poland. Revolut’s licence was approved after an initial application to the Bank of Lithuania was rubber-stamped by the European Central Bank.
While many UK fintechs are cautious on Brexit, Revolut has been confident about limiting disruption to its services. The company confirmed it would seek to apply for a UK banking licence in the event that it couldn’t passport its European services after Brexit.
Revolut, founded in 2015 by developer Vlad Yatsenko and former Lehman Brothers and Credit Suisse trader Nikolay Storonsky, already has 3.2 million customers, and the company boasts that it has long waiting lists outside Europe. The company raised $US250 million earlier this year and has reportedly lured a potential $US500 million investment from Japan’s SoftBank.
“With the banking licence now secured, commission-free stock trading progressing well and five new international markets at final stages of launch, we are living up to our reputation as the “Amazon of banking”. Our vision is simple: one app with tens of millions of users, where you can manage every aspect of your financial life with the best value and technology”, said Nik Storonsky, Founder & CEO of Revolut.
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