Fintech Unicorn TransferWise Acquires Restricted Banking License in Australia as it Expands Operations Globally

Fintech Unicorn TransferWise has reportedly managed to acquire a restricted banking license in Australia. The leading money transfer service provider has been approved to gain direct access to Australia’s real-time payment system.

The permit has been issued by Australia’s Prudential Regulatory Authority. Under the license, TransferWise can offer purchased payment facilities, but only as a “limited authorized deposit-taking institution.”

The UK-headquartered Fintech firm will now join payments giant PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) as only the second non-bank financial service provider to be able to directly access the real-time payments network in Australia. TransferWise’s management noted that they’re planning to maintain a settlement account with the Reserve Bank of Australia. This could potentially reduce the cross-border payment firm’s overall cost of doing business in the country and would free up funds that businesses are paying to third-parties to link up to the network.

TransferWise is reportedly the first non-bank entity to have been granted permission to access the faster payments system in the United Kingdom. This notably includes being able to maintain a settlement account with the Bank of England.

TransferWise also intends to become one of the first non-bank financial services providers to link up with the Singapore Fast network, after the nation’s reserve bank revealed that it will allow direct access to the city-state’s real-time payment infrastructure to non-bank financial institutions (NFIs).

As reported in October 2020, more than 30% of cross-border payments made via Fintech TransferWise are now instant, while transaction fees have also been lowered. As covered in September 2020, Transferwise is saving US customers lots of money compared to other Fintechs and banks. Also in September, the Fintech firm reported that it booked its 4th year of profitability, and now serves over 8 million individuals, processing £67 billion for the last fiscal year.

In July 2020, TransferWise finalized a $319 million investment round at a $5 billion+ valuation as growth remains steady for the profitable Fintech.

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