Fintech-Startup Number 26 Has Got Full Bank License

Previously ran the checking account offer of startups number 26 by the Wirecard Bank. Now wants to start number 26 with an own banking licence.

The start-up Number26 wants to make traditional banks in the future stronger competition. The Berlin-based company received a full banking license and could be active in the business to Europe, the founders communicated on Thursday in Berlin. Chief of the N26 Bank is Markus Gunter, a former head of the DAB Bank.

The banking license is “the basis for this that we can expand internationally”, said co-founder and Chief of the startups, Valentin Stalf. The goal is to build a Europe-wide border bank. “We can today a checking account offer, that is five to ten times cheaper than at a traditional bank” – because the start-up costs. “We believe that the branch of the future will be the Smartphone,” said Stalf.

Termination due to cash withdrawals

The company was started with an online account in collaboration with the Wirecard Bank and got more than 200,000 customers. In principle, the app was rather a fancy user interface for the banking backend by Wirecard. The cooperation with the Wirecard Bank is terminated with its own banking licence and the customer accounts should move in the second half of the year.

Number26 last ran into criticism after the start-up announced around 400 customers, because they too often would have withdrawn money at ATMs. The company offered it as a free service, but took over the still charges. Meanwhile, the number of free withdrawals has been limited. The start-up renames now also by Number26 in N26.

German deposit guarantee

With the full banking license the startup can offer now virtually all services of a bank – money attachments over loans to insurance. Among other things, there will be future fast online loans for consumers, within the next six to 12 months, other services will follow. The offers are to be implemented on their own, partly through partnerships. Customer deposits will be protected over the statutory German deposit guarantee, a spokeswoman of the startups to heise said online.