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RBS preps arm’s length digital challenger bank for launch

By John Glenday | Reporter

RBS Group

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rbs article

September 28, 2018 | 3 min read

Royal Bank of Scotland is seeking to branch out with the establishment of a digital-only challenger bank called Bó as part of a wider fightback against encroaching fintech upstarts such as Monzo and Revolut.

According to Sky RBS has around 100 people working on the project, which it reports could be the largest new brand launch in the financial sector since HSBC premiered First Direct in the 1980s.

Led by former chief operating officer Mark Baillie, the venture is being prepped for a public reveal next year with the intention of migrating one million existing NatWest customers over to the mobile-only platform.

RBS DAVID WHELDON

RBS preps arm’s length digital challenger bank for launch / RBS

Further details on the launch remain thin on the ground but speculation suggests that RBS is experimenting with artificial intelligence and big data technology to give it an edge over established rivals.

In response to the media reports an RBS spokesperson would only say: "As part of the bank's wider investment in digital and innovation, RBS is working on a range of projects to better serve our customers in the era of digital and open banking.

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"One of the projects we are looking at is building a separate, digital-only bank for personal customers."

As well as looking to the future RBS is also embracing the past, resurrecting an original 1968 logo as the basis for an all new graphic identity.

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