We sat down with Anne Boden, CEO at Starling Bank to talk about SMEs, startup expansion and cheeky tweets about USD accounts at FinTECHTalents 2019.
Watch the video now.
You are entrepreneurial. How does that vibe translate here?
Well it’s been quite a journey getting to where we are today and our role in life is to help other businesses like ourselves. We are an SME bank, so we look after SME customers and many people here today are thinking about starting businesses or have businesses so they are our customers as well.
How did you successfully pivot from app-only to having a physical and online presence?
Business customers wanted somewhere to pay in cash and therefore we did a deal with The Post Office and now you can use eleven and a half thousand branches to pay in and withdraw cash which is really essential especially for those people that are in rural communities.
Of course, we also have the desktop and laptop version of Starling and businesses can currently use that. Next year we’ll be launching that to retail consumers as well.
How were you able to tell that your business customers wanted this?
We now look after customers that have maybe 10 to 20 employees and it’s a bit difficult for them all to sit there in the office on their smartphones. So, we are now servicing bigger and bigger customers and, of course, now we have to be appropriate and provide the services for offices.
You have offices in Southampton and London. Where next?
We are going to have an office in Cardiff very soon, we’re currently working on that. Our office in Southampton is absolutely awesome. We have a lot of connections into Southampton University and Solent University. We are working with Dame Wendy Hall on artificial intelligence out of Southampton University as well. So Southampton is a very important engineering site for us.
What’s next for 2020?
We’ve got euro accounts available now for business and for consumer. You now can use your one debit card and switch between euro accounts and your GBP account. I tweeted last week about a US dollar account – I wasn’t meant to tweet it and the office wasn’t that keen on me doing it but I was so excited that we now have a US dollar account as well.