Monday 22 March 2021 2:00 pm

Revolut submits application for US banking licence

A year after launching in the US, Revolut has submitted its draft application for a US banking licence as it expands its business account across all 50 states. 

Revolut secured a Lithuanian banking licence bank in 2018 and announced it had applied for a UK licence earlier this year. 

Securing both a US and UK banking licence is likely to see Revolut’s valuation skyrocket, although approval may take up to two years.  Last July the fintech raised $80m in a Series D round, valuing the business at around $5.5bn.

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Revolut’s US boss Ron Oliviera confirmed today the company had submitted a draft application with the FDIC and the California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation. 

The bank announced its US launch a year ago but the licence will allow Revolut to provide a broader range of products, including overdraft protection, loans and deposit accounts. 

“A US banking license would ultimately enable us to provide US customers with all the essential financial products and services they can expect from their primary bank including loans and deposits,” Revolut co-founder and chief executive, Nik Storonsky said.

“We’re on a mission to build the world’s first global financial superapp, and pursuing a US banking license is an integral part of the journey.” 

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The challenger bank said it had already attracted “hundreds of thousands of customers” in the US but it faces stiff competition with other challenger banks moving into the country. 

Monzo applied for a US licence last April which, if approved, would allow it to directly compete for the growing digital banking market across the US. 

Challengers will be hoping that they can tap into the higher card fees in the US as they look to turn a profit. In the meantime Revolut is hoping the expansion of its business account into all 50 states, also announced, will provide additional income. 

The business arm, which launched in 2017 across the UK and Europe, offers a number of accounts including one which is free of charge and others which charge up to £100 a month. 

Features include free and instant money transfers between companies that are signed up for Revolut Business.