A new digital bank is on the horizon in the form of Pennyworth. It's applied for a UK banking licence and here's what we know about it so far.
What is Pennyworth?
Pennyworth is an upcoming digital bank that was unveiled in October 2020. The company says it started its pre-application process to become an authorised UK bank back in March 2020, and that it plans to start testing out its products with customers in early 2021.
Pennyworth’s founders, Jeremy Takle and Ben Harvey, are the former managing director and head of product respectively at Barclays’ digital consumer bank in the US.
They say their new bank will be targeting “aspiring affluent” young professionals for its customer base, and that it will be aiming to provide a more personalised service than is currently on offer from existing digital banks in the UK.
What types of bank account can I get with Pennyworth?
Unusually, Pennyworth says that it won’t be operating its own current accounts. Instead, it will use Open Banking capabilities to provide its customers with financial planning tools that they can use across all of their bank accounts.
Pennyworth is also planning to offer high-yield savings and deposits, as well as loans and overdrafts.
Although the bank is not yet up and running, it has already listed some potential savings interest rates and borrowing loan rates on its website.
Easy access savings accounts are set to be offered with an interest rate of 1.5% (AER), while a fixed rate 2 year savings account will attract an interest rate of 2.0% (AER).
Overdrafts will be charged at a rate of 9.9% (representative APR), and personal loans will start from 2.9% (representative APR).
But you can’t apply for any of these financial products yet, as Pennyworth is not operational. So there is always the chance these rates may change by the time the bank launches.
How can I sign up to Pennyworth?
Pennyworth is not yet live in the UK market, as its banking licence is still in the application phase.
However, the would-be neobank has opened a waiting list on its website, through which it aims to recruit 1,000 “Pennyworth Pioneers”.
These early joiners will gain advanced access to its mobile banking app as part of a beta testing project in early 2021.
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