Monzo Bank Ltd., the British digital bank, has taken the next step to expand into the U.S. market, where it has already done some testing.
The five-year-old London-based startup, which has 4 million customers in the United Kingdom, has applied to the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency for a banking license.
“Filing an application for a U.S. banking license is a significant milestone in our mission to make money work for everyone,” Monzo U.S. CEO TS Anil told American Banker on Friday (April 24).
While Revolut launched its banking app in the U.S. last month in partnership with New York-based Metropolitan Commercial Bank, it has not applied for a banking license in the country.
Anil, former global head of payment products and platforms at Visa, joined Monzo in January. His mission is to lead the push into U.S. markets. He brings more than two decades of experience with Standard Chartered, Citi and Capital One. He reports to Monzo CEO and Co-Founder Tom Blomfield.
Last summer, Monzo made its banking services available to 1,000 American customers on a trial basis to get feedback.
Monzo entered the U.S. market via a partnership with Sutton Bank, which is based in Ohio. It is the first digital bank out of Europe to launch in the U.S. Today, Monzo says it has a waiting list of 20,000 customers in the U.S.
Still, getting its U.S. banking license application approved could take up to 24 months.
If its application is successful, Monzo would be able to offer insured deposit accounts in the U.S. and provide loans to Americans.
Monzo is reportedly planning to open up a new office in San Francisco, and also to increase the number of employees it has in the U.S.