Mashable: How Banksimple Wants To Revolutionise Banking


Mashable have been talking to Banksimple founder Alex Payne to get a better idea of how his company intends to shake up the world of banking.

Payne left Twitter back in May, saying that he wanted to “build something that’s simple, beautiful and works really, really well.” In fact, what he seems to be building is a banking platform, which provides customers with a slick front-end experience, whilst ultimately reliant on traditional banks.

In some ways, this is sensible. One of the biggest problems for a new bank is gaining customer trust – without a trading history, people will be reluctant to trust a new bank with their money. Banksimple aims to sidestep this problem by being backed by some established banks.

But it also means that there is still an element of legacy banking that Banksimple will have to deal with, so they’ll have to be careful this doesn’t hold back their vision and innovation.

The Mashable article concentrates on four features that will distinguish Banksimple from other banks:

  • Predictive Money Management – Banksimple customers will have a single online account from which they can access all of their types of account, such as credit card, current and savings accounts. Behind the scenes, Banksimple will (somehow) manage the transfer of money between these accounts and ensure that customers are getting the best rate of interest on their deposits. “The predictive model knows how much money to keep for padding and can calculate how much money is safe to spend.”
  • Social Media Meets Banking – Banksimple will support integration with some of the major social networks such as Twitter and Facebook . When granted access by a customer, these social networks and other third-parties will be able to gather data from Banksimple accounts for use for a variety of purposes. Expect a plethora of Mint-like spending and saving analysis tools to be built off the back of this data. There will also be a great opportunity for friend-to-friend payments via social networks.
  • Fee-free banking – whilst there’s no such thing as a free lunch, and Banksimple needs to earn money from somewhere, it intends to do this without charging fees for things like cash withdrawals or overdrafts. “The startup will take a percentage of interchange fees and net interest margins to monetize their service. Both are standard sources of revenue for banks, the former of which is simply a percentage of the fee that businesses pay to credit card companies to process transactions. In the future, Banksimple also hopes to offer for-charge services around products designed to make customers’ financial lives easier”
  • Great customer service – despite the fact this is not a bank with branches, because they’re dealing with somebody’s money, they need to have great customer service, especially when things go wrong, which will happen. “Banksimple is investing in a resource-heavy call center that will include trained professionals who will be available to all customers for any of their queries, free of charge. It’s an expensive undertaking, but a necessary one for the startup to stand out.”

One thought on “Mashable: How Banksimple Wants To Revolutionise Banking

  1. On the great customer service front – most banks even when you go for counter service end up pointing you to their telephone lines anyway. Whilst it would be ideal to have everything at your fingertips at the counter, as long as the service is impeccable on the phone, and the staff are easy to understand and actually know what they are doing call centres aren’t too bad.

    The amount it costs to call them via a mobile on 0845 numbers is excessive though.

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