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Monument cleared to launch loan, buy-to-let neobank for affluent professionals

Monument Bank, a digital banking startup targeting affluent professionals, is cleared to launch in the UK following the Financial Conduct Authority removing regulatory restrictions from the neobank, according to a press release.

The company is now a fully-licensed bank with the authority to take public, FSCS-insured deposits. It is aiming its sights on affluent professionals, those with between £250,000 and £5 million in liquid assets, a group expected to include 4.8 million people in the UK. These professionals are expected to include veteran bankers, high-profile lawyers, established property developers and highly-paid doctors, according to Crowdfund Insider.

Monument’s planned launch is set to include digital lending propositions for buy-to-let properties and bridging loans to support experienced landlords. Clients will be able to borrow up to £3 million for these property investments, with support from specialist relationship managers, according to Mortgage Introducer.

“We are proud to bring to market an App that provides intuitive and highly efficient client onboarding and an immersive service experience. Through the App our clients will be able to interact with us by live chat, phone, video and email, and to switch between those channels at the touch of a finger,” Monument CEO Mintoo Bhandari said.

The bank has been planning the launch since it raised a £28 million Series A in February, led by City of London veterans including Rakeesh K. Loonkar, Harry Handelsman and Eric Zinterhofer.

The company has now raised £60m in capital to date, including £10 million in seed funding, and is in the process of raising another round expected to surpass £20 million, according to Fintech & Finance News.

Monument has brought in a number of technology servicers to help with the launch. Mambu will provide the neobank’s central core banking engine, with Salesforce providing CRM and AWS providing cloud services. Persistent Systems and Accenture Interactive are expected to support the build.

Now that FCA regulations have been withdrawn and Monument is a fully-licensed bank, the company is ready to open its application to the public and begin moving forward.

“While we never planned to build and launch a bank in the middle of a global pandemic, the timing could not have been more relevant as the demand for, and comfort with, digital finance has accelerated dramatically over the past 18 months,” Bhandari told Mortgage Insider.

“We are very excited to take our first steps of addressing the substantial, aspirational, hard-working, asset-rich but time-poor community which holds trillions in wealth in the UK and which lacks the right financial services partner,” he said.

Monument is expected to roll out various fixed-term savings products following launch, according to Finextra. These savings products are expected to target individuals looking to save upwards of £25,000, and offer better rates to customers who have existing fixed term loan deposits. The company also plans to launch a “Member Services” suite, which will offer first-class services to customers and clients.

In other recent fintech news, TomoCredit is looking to unlock financial freedom for a new niche, cash rich and credit poor. Tern is also bringing finance technology to more with its Fintech-as-a-Service platform.

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