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Starling Bank raises £75m for European expansion

Starling Bank has raised £60 million in a Series C funding round led by Merian Global Investors, and a further £15 million from an existing seed investor Harald McPike, bringing the total to £75 million.

The funding will support increased investment in its retail and small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) banking products in the UK. It will also enable the digital banking platform to accelerate global expansion, starting in Europe.

It also announced an expansion of the Banking Services offering, with the addition of three new partners – Telleroo, PelicanPay and Vitesse – providers of business to business payments for corporates and other institutions.

Starling will be providing Telleroo with payroll payment services for its clients. With Vitesse, it will be enabling insurance claim payouts, while with PelicanPay it will process payments for a range of clients, including FinTechs and third party providers.

Since launching its app in May 2017, Starling has built up a customer base of 460,000 personal current accounts and 30,000 SME accounts. The bank expects to hit one million customers by the end of 2019.

In a New Year’s statement, the digital challenger bank unveiled plans to launch a credit card service and a new euro account for UK customers in 2019.

Anne Boden, founder and chief executive of Starling, said: “Building our platform and launching in the UK to provide genuine choice to retail, SME and banking-as-a-service customers was just the first step.

“Our ambition is to use our technology to build a next-generation global, digital banking platform, starting with our launch across Europe this year.”

Nick Williamson, Merian Chrysalis co-portfolio manager, said: “The Starling team has developed a highly impressive and efficient platform, which we believe positions it well to continue to take share in core banking markets, as well as the ability to offer innovative new services in the future.”

Mia Turner

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