Our final spotlight article for our Top 5 Best Challenger Banks list is the only actual bank in the bunch. See how Germany-based Fidor Bank stacks up against the high street banks and its nonbank competitors.
Company Name: Fidor Bank
Location: Germany, U.K. and soon in France
Opened for Business: 2009
Banking License: Yes
Investors/Funding: owned by BPCE, France’s second-largest banking group, which gives Fidor the capability to expand across Europe while helping BPCE brands go digital, too.
Flagship product/proposition: Fidor Bank Community
Fidor Bank has defined a completely new banking relationship for digitally savvy consumers and business customers with its Fidor Community. Fidor believes in openness, fairness and involving customers in the decision-making process. The Fidor Community has become one of the most active financial communities where more than 470,000 users engage in discussions around the clock. The motto of the company is “Banking with friends,” and, as such, Fidor created a community that advise each other, help increase financial literacy, do more with their finances, trade bitcoins, invest and get help from the community with crowdfunding and more.
Fidor realized that people are more likely to go to their friends and family for financial advice than their bank, so it created a community to facilitate that. To keep the community active, members earn financial bonuses, which are converted to cash after becoming a fully KYC customer. They also earn tips from their peers for their help using the “Cent me/Tip me” button.
Secret Sauce: The bank cites many differentiators:
- The community being the major one. The active community, which is growing organically helps customers understand banking and what best fits their lifestyle or projects.
- The rewards: Customers are rewarded when they advise their peers, when they transfer their salary, recommend someone, etc. People earn more with Fidor, not less. https://banking.fidorbank.uk/bonus
- Finance Bay/The Marketplace: The bank has partnered with more than 42 startups to build a marketplace of curated offers for trading, insurance, financial management, crowdfunding, telco, bitcoin and more. Dubbed Finance Bay, the marketplace is available in Germany, but global banks and fintechs also can join.
- 60-second banking: transfers, emergency loans (thanks to pre-scoring customers) and payments are done within 60 seconds.
Target customers: Digital-savvy customers
Active customers: 200,000
Growth strategy: Fidor Bank is expanding across Europe, opening in France in 2017, with more countries to follow in 2018. Fidor Solutions, the digital backbone of Fidor Bank now is expanding globally with offices in Dubai, New York and Singapore to collaborate with more like-minded organizations to spread its vision of banking.
Why do you deserve to be on this list? “There are no banks that have a community such as Fidor does, with real fans. We are the only ones who give a voice to people through online forums. We are genuine and open. We let people talk about all financial topics as they wish and enjoy co-creating with them. We continue to think, innovate, test and learn and we believe that our vision of banking fits our digital lifestyle, which will become more widespread as the world evolves.”
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