Starling Bank, a digital challenger bank headquartered in London, has announced that the brand will be launched in “Ireland and beyond”. Mention of the launch came in an Irish job advertisement published last week, suggesting the bank is moving closer to offering its services here.
In its advert for a Dublin-based marketing director at Starling International, the company said the successful applicant “will have the opportunity to help launch the Starling brand in Ireland and beyond”.
This could also indicate that Starling is successful in his application for a banking license that would allow him to operate in Europe. Licenses are issued by the European Central Bank (ECB), with the Central Bank of Ireland reviewing applications in cooperation with it.
In 2019, the Irish times first reported that Starling Bank was planning to set up an Irish hub and apply for a banking license here, which would allow it to expand into Europe. It has already established a subsidiary in Dublin to potentially serve the Irish market and act as a stepping stone into other European markets.
In 2020, Anne Boden, founder of Starling Bank and former AIB director, spoke about the challenger bank’s international ambitions following a £60m funding round. At the time, she said the money would help Starling enter the market in Ireland later this year after Brexit-related uncertainty delayed expansion plans.
“Without Brexit, we could have used our passport to expand across Europe,” she said. “It’s fair to say that uncertainty slowed us down but now we have certainty and are fully charged and ready to go.”
In August 2020 the Irish times reported Starling has resumed talks with the central bank to secure a banking license after being “temporarily put on hold” during the lockdown.
Last week the Sunday independent found Starling job listings on its website for a variety of senior positions. These included senior positions in marketing, credit risk, financial risk, non-financial risk and treasury.
An advertisement for the position of Chief Financial Officer said the position had become vacant due to the group’s “anticipated rapid international growth”.
The ad says that Starling Bank has surpassed 2.6 million accounts since its launch in 2014. Among them were 400,000 business accounts for small and medium-sized businesses. Additionally, total deposits at the bank have surpassed over £8 billion over the same period.
The potential for Starling to launch in Ireland comes as both Ulster Bank and KBC prepare to exit the Irish market.
Vivid Money, a Berlin-based challenger bank, withdrew its application for an e-money license from the central bank last week. Revolut recently dropped its plans to use an e-money license it obtained from the central bank, opting instead to use a full banking license issued by the ECB to offer banking services – including personal loans – to customers here.
Starling declined to comment.
https://www.independent.ie/business/personal-finance/banking/job-adverts-indicate-starling-bank-is-getting-ready-for-its-irish-launch-41510743.html Job advertisements indicate that Starling Bank is preparing to launch in Ireland