The fintech industry and challenger banks in particular making a difference beyond providing people with convenient banking services, they are also providing jobs and careers.
This is further evidence of the importance of the fintech sector to the UK economy. Government should take seriously the views of this industry on Brexit.
The UK and London in particular is a hotbed for fintech and many are already planning to open operations in other EU countries, to prepare for the loss of access to the single market and passporting rights. These operations in other countries could mean future tech jobs are created outside the UK.
Monzo’s move shows there is life beyond London for fintechs and there is an increasing feeling there will have to be life outside the UK for many.
Take Monzo. A mobile only bank which received its banking licence in April 2017. Not only has it amassed a customer base of about a million but it also creating jobs.
The bank has for example announced it will create 300 jobs over the next few years in Cardiff. These finetch jobs are part of Monzo’s expansion beyond its London headquarters.
The Cardiff centre will be able to access cyber security expertise because South Wales is a leading location for research into cyber risks, clearly critical to a digital bank.
Monzo joins insurtechs GoCompare, Confused.com, and MoneySupermarket.com, which are headquartered in Wales.
Monzo’s CEO, Tom Blomfield, said: “Over the next few years, we’ll be hiring hundreds of people into our Cardiff office as we grow our customer base by millions more people.”
Welsh government economy and transport minister, Ken Skates said: “Our Economic Action Plan is clear on our commitment to supercharging the industries of the future and supporting businesses to innovate and compete in a rapidly evolving market place.”
The region is attractive to tech firms. Cardiff has its own internet exchange and Europe’s largest datacentre, Next Generation Data, is also nearby. There are also fintech innovation labs there such as Barclays Eagle Lab and NatWest’s Entrepreneur Accelerator in Cardiff.