Revolut chief hopes for UK banking license by start of 2022

Nik Storonsky Chief executive of the London-based digital banking app Revolut says lack of liquidity remains a hurdle for London listings, he hoped to secure a UK banking license early in 2022.

“We are getting closer, especially with the UK banking license,” said Storonsky at the FT’s Global Banking Summit. “And we are about to submit our full US banking license application, hopefully in the first quarter.”

In October, Monzo withdrew its application after regulators said it was unlikely to be approved.

Acquiring a banking license was an important move to Revolut to build consumer trust.

Nick said, “A lot of consumers trust banks rather than fintechs so the UK and US bank license will increase trust and business metrics.”

In July, an $800m fundraisings gave Revolut a $33bn valuation, making it the biggest private technology company in British history which would mean that Revolut would be one of the most valuable companies ever to join the London Stock Exchange.

“Obviously, if a stock market in the US is 100 times larger compared to the UK then it might be the primary reason why a lot of companies choose to list in the US.”

In March and April, 2020 revenue fell by 40%, and the company significantly outperformed its pre-Covid performance in terms of gross profit growth and entered new businesses.

“We were all thinking initially it was scary but overall it was very positive for the company,” he said.

He also dismissed the attempts of JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs to compete for younger customers by offering more digital products. “They are not even in the top 50 providers,” he said.

Storonosky said “certain legacy banks become faster” but claimed they were “still not innovative enough”

He added that he had witnessed a trend of disruption amongst other fintech and had “decreased” their offering.

Revolut had been fortunate to enter the crypto products market in 2017, ahead of most competitors.

Nick concluded by saying “Now it’s very popular. We will continue to invest [in crypto] because it means the more revenues and gross profits the business makes, the more it makes sense to invest and go deeper into the product.”

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