FINANCIAL TECHNOLOGY | Staff Reporter, Australia

All-digital bank to launch in Australia as big four reel from scandal

Startup 86 400 will launch in early 2019.

All-digital banking startup 86 400 is planning to launch in Australia by early 2019 as the country’s largest lenders still reel from a damning probe which has pushed banking satisfaction to a near six year low.

Backed by payments service provider Cuscal, 86 400 is planning to enter beta this year with the full launch of an app-based transaction and savings account next year. The challenger bank will be led by Anthony Thomson who earlier founded UK-based all digital lenders, Atom Bank and Metro Bank.

Also read: Australia intensifies oversight over fintech lending

86 400 plans to offer smart personal financial management services and predictive cashflow enablement amongst other services once it obtains the necessary license from regulators. The company is said to have derived its name from the number of seconds in a day. 

Also read: Australian banks face heated competition as first digital-only player Volt enters fray

The launch of the all-digital bank comes at a time when bank customer satisfaction plunged to its weakest monthly showing in six years after plummeting to 78.5% in May, according to a survey from market research firm Roy Morgan.

“It is not surprising given the current level of negative publicity involving banks and the Royal Commission, that satisfaction with banks and customer advocacy levels are showing declines from the start of 2018,” said Norman Morris, industry communications director, Roy Morgan.

The country’s largest lenders, ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac, are facing their worst crisis in recent memory after a probe by the Royal Banking Commission uncovered systemic corporate malpractice which ranges from lying to regulators to falsification of documents and taking bribes, prompting foreign players like Barclays and Societe Generale to capitalise on the weakened lenders.

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