Digital banking pioneer Revolut has taken a major step closer towards its goal of becoming the “Amazon of banking” after confirming it has secured a European banking licence.
The London-based FinTech has today outlined plans for full current accounts, consumer lending and commission-free stock trading.
Revolut said it will begin implementing the licence next year, focusing initially on smaller European countries before eventually “passporting” the licence to key markets including the UK, France, Germany and Poland.
“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”, said CEO Nik Storonsky, who launched Revolut with co-founder Vlad Yatsenko in July 2015.
Revolut initially drew in customers by letting them spend and transfer money abroad with the real exchange rate, and has since attracted over three million users and raised approximately $340 million in investments.
In December 2017, the company began offering its customer the ability to buy and sell exposure to cryptocurrencies from within their app, and in August it announced plans to launch commission-free stock trading across the UK and Europe in early 2019.
The new banking licence will mean that customers can start depositing their salaries, which will be protected up to €100,000 under the European Deposit Insurance Scheme. Revolut will also begin to work on offering overdrafts, personal and business loans at competitive rates to traditional high street lenders.
Storonsky added: “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.”
Aside from launching in international markets and building a commission-free trading platform, one of the key focus areas for the company is to break into lending.
Revolut plans to offer standard overdraft facilities as well as personal and business loans at competitive rates.
“Our vision is that retail and business customers will be able to apply for a loan in just two minutes from within the app, and then have the money in their account almost instantly,” said Storonsky.
“We’ll remove the bureaucratic process and come in cheaper than traditional lenders.”
Revolut has grown “astronomically” over the last 12 months and now claims to be opening between 8,000 and 10,000 new current accounts daily.
The FinTech has also announced plans to expand beyond Europe, with the United States, Canada, Singapore, Japan, Australia and New Zealand all expected to launch in early 2019.