The digital challenger submitted the application on Monday. For a US banking licence to be approved, it could take up to two years for Monzo’s application.
Monzo is planning to expand the number of its employees in the US and will open a new office in San Francisco.
They have clearly planned to enter the American market with last year hiring Visa veteran TS Anil to lead the push and opening a waitlist for a service comprising a debit card and mobile app.
“By applying to be one of the first new US banks in a decade, we’re aiming to provide Americans with a better banking alternative. Monzo will be fair, transparent, and will bring many of the features that our UK customers love to the US market.” Anil said.
If the application is successful, Monzo would be able to offer fully insured deposit accounts in the US and could lend money to American customers.
Monzo has been a fully licensed bank in the UK for three years already. This has let it to transform towards traditional – and, crucially, money-making – banking practices such as lending.
With the application, Monzo has bested it’s UK rival Revolut since, Revolut has also recently entered the US market but have not applied yet.
US challenger bank Chime, which has eight million customers and will arguably be one of Monzo’s biggest rivals in the region, currently partners with FDIC-insured Bancorp Bank and does not have its own bank charter.
Considering the COVID crisis Monzo’s CEO Tom Blomfield decided to gave up his salary for the next 12 months to ensure that his staff receives theirs.