Fintech startup challenges Tinkoff Bank

06.02.2018 | 12:01 Home / News / Fintech /
#Nikolay Storonsky #Revolut
Fintech startup Revolut, launched in London in 2015, is getting ready to enter the Russian market. The newcomer’s aim is to surpass Tinkoff Bank and Rocketbank, both working in digital format.

Revolut co-founder and CEO, Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology graduate Nikolay Storonsky has talked about his startup’s goals in the interview to Republic.ru.

According to Storonsky, the decision to found a company in the UK had to do with the favorable environment in terms of laws and regulations. Moreover, it is a big market and Revolut could “make a fintech product from London for the entire Europe, which means 350 million people with decent average annual income”.

Initially, the startup developed a debit card you could use in any country and exchange currencies by interbank rates. The card allowed accounts in several currencies and the user could exchange and convert money as well as make payments without a fee, managing all transactions in the app.

“No one else in the world offers anything similar, so our startup has recorded a rapid growth,” highlighted Storonsky.

Now Revolut features 130 currencies (including 3 cryptocurrencies) and serves over million people (mostly in UK). The startup has raised USD 28m in total, including USD 5m Revolut received from its own clients during the crowdfunding campaign.

Revolut plans to issue cards in Russia as well by the end of 2018. The startup will work as a non-bank institution and get a bank license later on.

According to Storonsky, Revolut opens more accounts daily that Tinkoff Bank, so the startup aims to surpass both Oleg Tinkoff’s enterprise and the Rocketbank. “It should be noted that contrary to Rocketbank, we are not an additional structure. We didn’t get agreements with banks. We are a full member of the system, we get all necessary licenses and we build our infrastructure. Essentially, we perform as a marketmaker and offer interbank rates.”

Revolut CEO has talked about the future of fintech and predicted that in 20-25 years, the market will have several global players presenting the whole specter of financial services. “The centre of financial life will be narrowed down to an app where you can do anything. There won’t be local banks, only several global ones,” noted the businessman.

Storonsky has also remarked he used to be skeptical about cryptocurrencies but later admitted that “they are the future”. Nevertheless, he believes that bitcoin is not the perfect technology and will be replaced eventually.

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