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Revolut, one of Europe’s hottest fintech startups, is launching in the U.S.
Revolut calls its app, which is accompanied by a physical debit card, “Financial Super App,” as it aims to let consumers “manage all aspects of their financial life.” The app is available on iOS and Android and is easy to set up and use.
Not all features will be available in the U.S. at launch. Initially, customers will be able to set up a Revolut account from their smartphone, enabling them to make payments and deposit salaries. The company says that deposits in the U.S. are FDIC insured up to $250,000 through a partnership with Metropolitan Commercial Bank.
In Europe, Revolut has several debit card tiers, including a fancy, Metal card which comes with perks such as airport lounge discounts and up to 1 percent cashback on purchases. A Revolut spokesperson told me that in the U.S. only the Standard and Premium cards will initially be offered, while Metal will arrive “in the coming weeks.”
Users also get a detailed overview of their spending, instant spending notifications, the ability to split bills with others, and save their spare change with every purchase. Virtual and disposable debit cards are also available, as is the ability to instantly freeze and unfreeze those cards, or some of their functionality, such as online payments.
Revolut says additional features, including cryptocurrencies, commission-free stock trading and savings products are coming “in the near future.” The company jumped on the cryptocurrency train early, but there’s a caveat: the European version of the app only offers “exposure” to cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, and does not have an actual cryptocurrency wallet that would allow users to freely send and receive crypto.
Since its launch in 2016, Revolut has amassed more than 10 million global customers with a combination of aggressive marketing and a fast-expanding set of features. The company also raised quite a bit of funding; just last month, Revolut raised $500 million at a $5.5 billion valuation. The aggressive growth came with some criticism, with some insiders claiming the company culture is toxic; the company later said it’s working to fix its mistakes.
The U.S. launch has been expected for a while; the company says it already attracted “tens of thousands” of U.S. customers just by “hinting at a launch” in 2019. It now remains to be seen whether Revolut can replicate its success in Europe on the demanding U.S. market.