Brazilian Lender Banco Inter is launching an app to give its clients direct access to more than 60 online stores, according to Reuters.
The company is moving beyond simply offering free checking accounts in an attempt to attract more customers, and also to grow profit margins. Banco Inter also offers corporate and microenterprise accounts, as well as investment and insurance services. The banking outfit was founded in 1994 and has between 500 and 100 employees, according to Crunchbase.
Banco Inter is backed by SoftBank Group, which bought a 14.9 percent stake in it earlier this year.
Banco Inter is going to share a piece of commissions from the vendors with clients, by offering them cash-back rebates. The commissions will also add a previously unavailable revenue stream for the lender.
The Brazilian lender wants to retain its clients by becoming a one-stop shop for everything from banking to beauty products.
The app is partnered with AliExpress, Lojas Americanas, Nike, HP and others.
Chief Executive Joao Vitor Menin said that the move will help the bank to get new clients. Right now, the company has about 3.3 million customers, but it’s hoping to more than double that number by December of 2020, to 8 million.
Multi-function apps like the one proposed by Banco Inter are popular in China and other parts of Asia, but analysts are not sure they’ll catch on in Latin America, especially in Brazil, which is the region’s largest economy.
“A bank’s app is one that people use more recurrently,” Menin said. “So we believe clients will buy products and services through Inter’s app. It will prove to be easier.”
Banco Inter’s Q3 net income dropped 38.1 percent from a year earlier, because expenses at the company rose at a quicker pace than revenues.