LHV submits UK banking licence application

By Oliver Smith on Friday 25 February 2022

Digital Banking

Expected to be granted in 6-12 months time.

LHV submits UK banking licence application
Image source: Erki Kilu/LHV UK.

There could soon be a new bank in town, as LHV UK today announced it has submitted its banking licence application with the Bank of England.

Erki Kilu, the CEO of LHV UK, said it had taken the organisation “exactly a year” to prepare all the materials needed to submit its application.

“We have been in constant communication with the regulators and promptly addressed any recommendations and feedback.”

While securing a UK banking licence has become easier in recent years, the process still takes between 6-12 months depending on how complete the Prudential Regulatory Authority and Financial Conduct Authority judge the application to be.

In the meantime, LHV has been growing its team in the UK, reaching 25 people, along with the 55 staff in LHV’s Tallinn office that are dedicated to the UK business.

Kilu added that the UK entity would invest £8.5m this year in people, technology and risk control systems.

“We will also open our second UK office in Leeds, where we plan to hire IT specialists and engineers.”

This will complete the separation of LHV UK’s business activities from its parent company in Estonia, a plan which started back in 2020.

The reasoning for this decision was to allow LHV UK to better focus on its core financial infrastructure business of offering accounts, FX and card acquiring—separating it from LHV’s retail bank in Estonia.

LHV UK today counts over 200 customers including Wise, Monese, Coinbase and Currencycloud, it also offers modular financial services from third-parties including a banking platform with Tuum and payments processing with Form3.

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