Revolut looking for acquisitions


British fintech Revolut is looking to use some of the proceeds from its recent $ 500 million fundraiser to buy rival tech companies hit by the coronavirus pandemic.

Nikolay Storonsky, chief executive, told The Financial Times that Revolut had “a real opportunity” to take advantage of the crisis, despite a blow to its revenues, as blockages around the world had led to a drop in card transactions.

Revolut was launched five years ago as a prepaid debit card that allowed customers to avoid exchange fees while on the go. Since then, it has expanded into areas ranging from cryptocurrency trading to corporate banking.

Storonsky said he is now looking to build on Revolut’s roots as a traveler’s card, targeting offers in areas such as travel aggregation, which would allow customers to purchase flights or hire cars via the Revolut app when travel restrictions are finally lifted.

© Tolga Akmen FT Commission

“A lot of travel aggregators are struggling right now – we could probably buy one and sell plane tickets at cost and be 10 to 15% cheaper than everyone else,” he said. .

Revolut recently appointed Don Hoang, a former Uber executive, to lead its negotiation efforts. Mr. Storonsky added, “It’s not just a reflection of the blue sky – we’ve just done a fundraiser, we’re rich in cash. “

Many tech start-ups have struggled since the start of the pandemic, as their venture capitalists have become increasingly cautious about providing additional funding to companies already in deficit. However, Revolut raised $ 500 million from investors in February, valuing the group at $ 5.5 billion, shortly before the pandemic began to seriously affect Europe.

Storonsky acknowledged that Revolut had suffered due to reduced card spending, but said “overall we are holding up well compared to other players.” The company has so far not had to lay off any of its 2,500 employees, unlike competitors such as Monzo, although it has asked certain employees to exchange part of their salary for shares in the purpose of saving money. Storonsky said he “may” use the leave plan in the future.

The hunt for Revolut acquisitions is part of a larger effort to continue its expansion despite damage from the coronavirus. On Monday, it announced that it had finally started operating as a full-fledged bank in Lithuania, where it obtained its first banking license in late 2018.

The change will allow its 300,000 Lithuanian customers to switch from electronic money accounts to full bank accounts, which means their money will be covered by the country’s deposit guarantee system. The company said it would introduce consumer loans and extend the service to the rest of central and eastern Europe later this year.

Revolut also plans to start offering credit cards in the UK after applying for a consumer credit license, according to recent job vacancies. He is looking to recruit credit specialists to lead the development of the new service. A person close to the company said that its launch was not planned for this year.


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