Challenger Bank Facilitating Multiple Fiat, Crypto Holding & Spending Facility to Open in UK
Mark Hipperson, head of Barclays Group’s tech division for more than a decade and also co-founder and ex-CTO of UK’s Starling bank (small, recently-established retail banks that directly contest with large banks – also referred to as challenger banks), intends to roll out Ziglu, a digital banking venture, in the first quarter of 2020.
Referring itself as the next level in the challenger bank idea, the digital account will permit holding multiple fiat currencies, in addition to digital money, in a single account.
The free account will not only facilitate holding balances in more than one currency but also permit exchange of currencies within the same account.
Account holders will be able to buy and sell overseas currencies at Interbank rates. Notably, cryptocurrencies can also be bought and sold at the most competitive prices across multiple cryptocurrency exchanges.
Furthermore, as per Ziglu’s official website, any currency balance in the account can be freely spent anywhere on the planet using a debit card issued by Mastercard.
The facility also includes cryptos, which will get converted on a real-time basis at point of sale.
Since September 2018, Hipperson has been CEO of Ziglu and the firm has submitted application to the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to turn into an issuer of digital currency.
The online bank is presently accepting pre-launch applications, but only from the residents of the UK.
In the future, the firm intends to enroll members from other countries. In this regard, the company has issued the following message:
“While we intend to expand our offerings to other countries in due course, currently only UK-residents who are at least 18 years of age may use our services and are eligible to apply for a Ziglu account.”
Ziglu, notably, is the not the first firm to offer the aforesaid combo (crypto/fiat) account. Back in August 2019, Bitwala started offering an account along with a Bitcoin wallet and added Ethereum functionality.
Ziglu, obviously, is not the first firm to offer crypto backed debit cards. However, it is the first online bank to offer an account that can hold multiple fiat currencies and also cryptos, with instant spending facility at vendor locations.