Starling Bank, a digital bank planning to make inroads into the United Kingdom, has raised $70 million to serve that purpose, Financial Times reported Monday (Jan. 11). The company has also beefed up its board.
As noted by FT, the firm was founded by Anne Boden, who was previously the chief operating officer of Allied Irish Bank, with a focus on delivering mobile banking services to customers and an eye on taking business away from what have been traditionally known as High Street banks. The financial publication said Starling is coming to market close on the heels of two other digital peers, Atom Bank and Tandem, which were given the green light last year by regulators to launch into that market.
[bctt tweet=”Starling is coming to market close on the heels of two other digital peers.”]
Those upstarts have been looking to make a splash against the big and entrenched players that include Barclays, HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds. The tech firms must also, according to FT, deal with “longstanding customer apathy to switching accounts.” Meanwhile, in recent weeks, some of those banking stalwarts, such as HSBC, have been hit by online and other technical problems.
The investment comes from Harald McPike, founder of QuantRes, an investment management outfit based in the Bahamas. In a statement, McPike said: “Starling Bank will provide people with the kind of innovative leaps in their financial lives that they have experienced in transportation and video streaming, so this is an investment opportunity I could not pass up.”
Starling is still in the process of obtaining approval from regulators to launch its banking operations, but the firm also said it has appointed as chairman Oliver Stocken, who previously served as a non-executive director at Standard Chartered.
Other new board members include Victoria Raffé, Craig Mawdsley and Marcus Traill, joining as non-executive directors.