Revolut reportedly preparing UK banking licence application

By Oliver Smith on Monday 9 March 2020

Digital Banking

Move would come ahead of the UK’s departure from the European Union.

Revolut reportedly preparing UK banking licence application
Image source: Revolut CEO Nikolay Storonsky (right).

After five years of operation, challenger banking service Revolut is reportedly preparing to submit a banking licence application to the Bank of England.

The move comes just a month after Revolut’s CEO of banking Richard Davies announced the startup would be shifting its payment regulatory responsibilities to Ireland and Lithuania ahead of an anticipated loss of passporting rights when the UK leaves the EU later this year.

According to a report in The Sunday Times, Revolut is also hoping to secure a banking licence before the end of the year.

The move would come late in the day for Revolut, which has operated in the UK without a full banking licence since launching in 2015.

Securing a full licence would allow Revolut to hold deposits and beef up its direct lending operation, which to-date has been outsourced to Lending Works.

Revolut has never ruled out applying for a UK banking licence, and AltFi understands the fintech has not made any formal application at this time.

Viewed in the context of its application, Revolut’s bolstering of its board with the appointment of Martin Gilbert as chair and Michael Sherwood and Ian Wilson just last week seem positioned to reassure regulators that the business is in safe hands.

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