Banking

Circle In Early Talks For US Banking License

Circle

Months after rolling out a crypto trading platform, Circle Internet Financial Ltd said it has had early talks with regulators about obtaining a banking license in the U.S. With a license, Circle could offer its customers more financial services, Reuters reported.

To enable its customers to trade securities, for example, Circle is reportedly seeking to register with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission as a brokerage and trading venue. The move comes as FinTech firms seek to grow their offerings with inexpensive and accessible products. Already, Circle offers a money transfer service that allows people in Europe and the U.S. to transfer money at no cost.

Beyond Circle, Revolut, too, plans to apply for a banking license in United States in the near future. Revolut Chief Executive Officer Nikolay Storonsky said the startup could apply for a license in California by the end of 2018, Reuters reported. However, through a banking partner, Revolut plans to roll out services in the U.S. this summer. As of now, the company has five employees in New York and plans to open an office in California. The company, which has 400 employees worldwide, currently offers almost 2 million users a debit card along with a mobile app to help make it less expensive to send money.

In April, Revolut announced $250 million in a new round of funding. In a press release, the U.K. FinTech said that with the $250 million, its valuation has jumped five times in less than a year to $1.7 billion. Revolut noted that it has become one of the fastest tech companies in Europe to reach unicorn status. The Series C round of fundraising was led by DST Global of Hong Kong and also included new and existing investors such as Index Ventures and Ribbit Capital. The company has raised $340 million since its launch three years prior. Revolut said the new capital would go to expansion around the globe.

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