UK challenger bank Starling secures £75m for European expansion
Life is sweet for UK challenger bank Starling as it has raised £75 million in funding for its expansion plans in Europe.
It got £60 million in a Series C round led by Merian Global Investors, including the Merian Chrysalis Investment Company.
For those who are good at maths, Starling also raised a further £15 million from its existing (and unnamed) investor, bringing the total to £75 million.
Anne Boden, founder and chief executive of Starling Bank, says: “Building our platform and launching in the UK to provide genuine choice to retail, SME and Banking-as-a-Service customers was just the first step. Our ambition is to use our technology to build a next-generation global, digital banking platform, starting with our launch across Europe this year.”
Nick Williamson, Merian Chrysalis co-portfolio manager, adds: “The Starling team has developed a highly impressive and efficient platform, which we believe positions it well to continue to take share in core banking markets, as well as the ability to offer innovative new services in the future.”
The funding will be used to invest in Starling’s financial products in retail and SME banking as well as banking services in the UK.
Starling launched its app in May 2017, and says it has built up a customer base of 460,000 personal current accounts and 30,000 SME accounts. The bank expects to hit one million customers by the end of 2019.
The bank has been doing pretty well.
Earlier this month, it was getting ready for its Irish licence and Brexit with the launch of euro accounts to provide its UK customers with a way to hold, send and receive the currency for free.
Last month, Starling revealed its plans for the new year with a credit card release – and taunted the old banks in the process.
There are many other challenger banks in the UK. Check out the contenders here.