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Berlin-based fintech startup, N26 recently received a German banking license. Allowing it to reach other European banking markets.
With the banking license, this will give N26 the ability to access the entire EU instead of the handful of countries it originally operated in, as an EU licensed bank. Originally, they relied on Wirecard, a German banking platform.
Launching its app back in 2015, N26 or formerly NUMBER26 has around 200,000 users on its mobile banking app for them to be able to open bank accounts, transfer and even deposit/withdraw using an ATM or CASH26 locations.
Valentin Stalf, founder and CEO of N26 states:
“This [banking license] will allow us to significantly enhance the diversity of our product portfolio. For our customers, that means access to the best financial products, right on the app.”
N26 will now be able to decrease service fees and expand its services or its mobile app, attracting more customers to make the switch to the online banking app. In a press release, N26 stated that the license will also allow them to partner with other fintech and financial providers worldwide. As a result, the company launched N26 invest on July 26 using Vaamo, a Frankfurt-based investment platform. This service has over 15,000 securities in 3 different plans which will mean any investments will be diversified.
Maximilian Tayenthal, Founder and CFO of N26, explains:
“Millions of Euros lie unused in German checking accounts. In a period of low interest rates that effectively means a financial loss. With N26 Invest our customers have the possibility to easily put their excess funds to work.”
So far, N26 is only available in Germany and Austria but with their banking license, Stalf says that they could launch later this year or in 2017 in the UK. However, there is one obstacle. Brexit, which has influenced the fintech sector since the UK, is separating from key cities such as Berlin.
As Bitcoin users are pushing for decentralization and Blockchain technology implemented into banking, online banking companies such as Tangerine and Revolut are modernizing the traditional banking methods.
Putting online banking as a priority allows more customers to access their accounts when a physical bank branch is not near them. Presently, only several fintech companies in the European Union have the European banking license to unlock the entire european market.
After finishing a Series B funding round with $40 million USD in June and their banking license, N26 is prepared to take on the retail banking market.
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