The Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) has awarded Zurich-based bank Yapeal a fintech banking license to offer digital financial services in Switzerland.
Yapeal, given its fintech license, aims to challenge the traditional retail and consumer banking by offering digital services like online payments, balances income, fixed household costs, and more. The bank is currently building a ‘community-style’ customer platform known as the Yapters, who will be among the first to try the digital banking services.
In addition to the mentioned services, Yapeal is also narrowing its focus on blockchain technology to simplify the data storage process. The license also provides Yapeal the authority to offer accounts with IBAN without leaning to any bank for the payments system.
Yapeal plans to serve clients who are in need of credit but are rejected by normal retail banks due to the risk factor and lack of budget.
“Yapeal is very pleased to have reached this fundamentally important milestone. We are working with high intensity to achieve market entry. We are introducing a completely different style of banking. I’m not even sure if you would call it banking—we don’t want to be put in the same frame as traditional banks,” said Yapeal co-founder Andy Waar.
The last year, Switzerland financial sector gets more pressure to launch fintech services in the country. FINMA and the central bank admit a lack of fintech regulation in place, hence, fintech banking license is limited. However, the initial phase of the limitations will be put to place sooner this year.
The license was designed to cater to the growing needs of the startups and challenger banks, mainly offering digital services in the digital space. While the requirements for the license follow strict criteria, the new license category is designed to be easier to obtain in other respects.
Yapeal has yet to launch its services, as doors will be opened soon for customers soon.