Revolut an English fintech company offering banking and investment services to consumers. Founded in 2015 by Nikolay Storonsky and Vlad Yatsenko, the company initially produced a low-rate travel card. Storonsky in particular was an avid traveler who became tired of spending hundreds of pounds on currency exchange and foreign transaction fees. The Revolut app and core banking account are free to use. Instead, money is made through a combination of subscription fees, transaction fees, perks, and ancillary services.
Revolut Origin Story
Revolut is a British fintech company offering consumer banking and investment services.
The company was founded in 2015 by Nikolay Storonsky and Vlad Yatsenko after the former became tired of spending hundreds of pounds on currency exchange and foreign transaction fees while traveling.
With a background in finance, Storonsky knew that the rates he was receiving were not the best rates currency exchange platforms could offer consumers.
Unable to find a solution that minimized the cost of spending money overseas, Storonsky and Yatsenko set about developing one themselves.
Revolut’s first product was a travel card that enabled international travelers to change money into thirty different currencies at market rates.
The Revolut exchange platform was officially launched in July 2015 with a small round of investment funding worth $3.5 million.
Additional capital and expansion
In 2016, Revolut passed 100,000 users and secured Series A funding worth $15 million.
This was followed by a Series B round in 2017 ($66 million) and a Series C round for $250 million the following year.
At some point, Storonsky and Yatsenko pivoted somewhat and built a super app for younger consumers who preferred to access financial services on their smartphones.
At the end of 2018, the company received a banking license from the European Central Bank, which authorized it to offer consumer credit and accept deposits.
Six months later, Revolut launched commission-free stock trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and NASDAQ.
In 2019, Revolut passed ten million users as it first expanded into Australia and then Singapore soon after.
The company also entered into a landmark partnership with VISA in September, enabling the bank to expand into 24 markets, including the United States.
Series D funding
In February 2020, Revolut announced a Series D funding round worth $500 million.
Five months later, TechCrunch reported that Revolut had secured a further $80 million from TSG Consumer Partners.
The company said that the massive injection of funds would be used to add new features and roll out banking operations across Europe.
Launch in the United States
Revolut launched its long-awaited launch in the United States market in March 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic started to take hold worldwide.
The company then secured a broker-dealer license in September 2021, enabling it to offer a commission-free trading option.
After a Series F funding round worth $800 million, Revolut was valued at $33 billion.
The company added extra functionality to enable users to book vacations from their app and withdraw earned pay ahead of time to manage their expenses.
Revolut revenue generation
The Revolut app and core banking account are free to use.
Instead, money is made through subscription fees, transaction fees, perks, ancillary services, and payment for order flow.
Firstly, there are three paid plans which give extra functionality to the core banking account:
- Plus (£2.99/month) – offering the free UK and Euro IBAN account with a customizable card.
- Premium (£6.99/month) – offering all Plus features in addition to exclusive card designs, 24/7 priority support, and access to so-called Junior features that help kids manage their money.
- Metal (£12.99/month) – offering all Premium features, cashback on card payments, and three free international payments per month. Premium users are also sent a 100% contactless debit card made from reinforced stainless steel.
The Revolut Rewards scheme allows users to enjoy personalized cashback offers and discounts on eligible purchases.
Rewards bonuses are credited to user accounts and encompass purchases from entertainment, travel, restaurant, grocery, and retail businesses.
In all likelihood, Revolut receives a commission from each merchant and then gives its users a portion of the fee as a bonus.
The company also has two insurance options:
- Device insurance – global coverage is offered for £1 per week and covers all accidental damage.
- Travel medical insurance – here, Revolut uses geolocation technology to only charge consumers for days they are overseas. Medical and dental coverage starts from as little as £1 per day.
The Revolut trading platform allows users to trade stocks, commodities, and cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ether, and Stellar.
Users can get started for as little as £1 by purchasing fractional shares.
Plus and Premium subscription members can access a certain amount of free monthly trades. Each additional trade is charged at a flat fee.
Users can also take out a personal loan for between £500 and £25,000 with a payback period of 1 to 5 years.
The company makes money by charging interest on the loan and, where applicable, overdraft fees for late payments.
Payment for order flow
Revolut also collects payment for order flow (PFOF) to earn money from commission-free trades.
Essentially, PFOF is the compensation a broker (Revolut) receives from a market maker for sending customer trade volume their way.
- Revolut is an English fintech company offering banking and investment services. It was created after co-founder Nikolay Storonsky became dismayed at exorbitant foreign exchange and transaction fees while traveling abroad.
- Revolut offers three paid plans which give extra functionality to their free bank account. The company also earns a commission through its cashback and rewards scheme.
- Revolut has also established itself as an insurance and personal loan provider. Additionally, users can invest in stocks, commodities, and cryptocurrencies in fractional amounts.
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