The digital upstarts taking on Britain’s dominant few banks

CHRIS MATTHEWS joined Monzo last May. “A friend mentioned it over a curry. Everyone signed up at once. Nine or ten of us.” Mr Matthews, a structural engineer living in London, transfers money monthly from the big bank where his salary lands to the online upstart, for everyday expenses. Monzo’s smartphone app lets him track his spending precisely. He has found big banks’ security procedures frustrating, but he can block and reactivate his Monzo debit card with a tap on the app.

For some British millennials, Monzo is as close to a cult as a bank can be. Its coral-pink cards are hard to miss. “People in bars will get very excited if they see you are a fellow Monzo user,” says Mr Matthews, who is 29. Founded in 2015, it has had a full banking licence since April. It launched current accounts in the autumn; more than 370,000 have been opened, mainly by customers converting pre-paid cards, with which Monzo began. Tom Blomfield, the chief executive, says its marketing budget has been “practically...

via The Economist: Finance and economics Business Feeds

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