UK digital bank Starling Bank is now available to a broader set of users; still in a beta testing phase, the firm is now adding additional clients beyond just friends, family and product testers; as enhancements to the platform it recently announced its public API, which will allow for a product marketplace, and it has also partnered with TransferWise; Starling Bank will be offering its users full current account functionality with a contactless MasterCard debit card also including international payment services. Source
UK digital Bank Starling Bank is seeking to raise $54mn in a new funding round for international expansion; the capital will help the bank to move into other European markets and continue development of the technology; the bank recently acquired a passport via Ireland to allow them to access the European markets since Brexit is on the horizon. Source.
UK digital banks Monzo and Starling Bank announced payments integrations; Monzo plans to integrate Android Pay into the user interface for current account users; Starling Bank says it will be the first bank to partner with Fitbit Pay; while this is the first partnership of its kind for Monzo, Starling Bank integrated with Android pay a few months ago. Source.
UK Based Starling Bank has been granted approval by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority to offer financial products; the new authorizations will allow the bank to offer mortgages, consumer loans, ISAs and other investment products; they are the first mobile only bank to be granted such permissions. Source.
After gaining approval from the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) Starling Bank has seen their partners grow; Starling now counts PensionBee, WealthSimple, Habito and Kasko as partners; the company plans to announce about 25 partners this year alone; Starling’s Chief platform officer, Megan Caywood, says the new partners take the marketplace to the next level. Source.
Digital only bank Starling Bank and Moneybox, who provides savings and investment services, are teaming up; Moneybox will access Starling Bank customers offering them the tools offered by Moneybox allowing customers to round up purchases and invest the difference; integration is via Starling's API; Megan Caywood, Starling's chief platform officer stated: "People today want to not only manage their everyday money on their phone but their savings and investments too. Working with Moneybox makes this a possibility." Source
Innovate Finance published their annual list of women in fintech and while progress has been made, more work is needed; Innovate Finance CEO Charlotte Crosswell said "We’ve still got work to be done. When you look at statistics of women in fintech — it’s not there yet.”; other leaders like Anne Boden of Starling Bank said we all need to try harder; studies also show that the more diverse a team the better they perform. Source.
Digital banks have been presenting themselves as a more transparent fairer option than the traditional players; what these newcomers are finding is to scale and reach profitability they will need to figure out a way to lend that doesn’t strike the same tone as customers get from their typical bank; Tandem, Monzo, Starling Bank, Revolut and N26 have all started to roll out lending options in a variety of ways by using a tailored data driven approach; figuring out where the balance lies is the key piece if these banks are truly going to disrupt the banking system. Source.