Two Digital Banks Launch in a Single Day

  • Philip Ryan
  • January 14, 2016
  • 4

© Can Stock Photo Inc. / Alex_Chip

Today seems like a good day to launch a digital bank.

At least, that’s what two banks decided this week. This morning, Barcelona-based CaixaBank launched imaginBank, which it describes as Spain’s first mobile-only bank for millennials. And also this morning, Equitable Bank, based in Toronto, announced EQ Bank, a digital-only bank with a strong savings rate and tools to help customers manage money as its selling points.

Don’t get us wrong about the simultaneous launch, though. Each bank likely spent years  on this launch leading up to today, and each deserves attention for its efforts.

This twin launch comes at a time when mobile banking weekly unique visitors exceeded branch visitors for the first time, according to a December Javelin report. EQ Bank and imaginBank follow in the footsteps of Hello Bank from BNP Paribas, and BankMobile from Customers Bank. Digital-only brands can help banks experiment with new brands to attract new customers, as well as try out modern tech stacks that remain separate from the bank’s own core systems.

mobile banking exceeds branchbankingMobile-only imaginBank notes in a press release that its offerings will be a “complete range of commission-free products and services, including current accounts, debit cards, consumer loans, personal finance management tools, and the latest functionality in mobile and P2P payments.”

EQ Bank, meanwhile, positions itself as a savings tool with its 3% savings rate. In addition to no fees and unlimited transfers, the bank promotes savings goals and personal financial management tools, which pairs nicely with the savings account.

CaixaBank has about $375 billion in assets, while Equitable Bank has approximately $14.4 billion.


Get more digital banking insights at Bank Innovation 2016, Feb 29-Mar 1 in Seattle. Click here for details.

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Philip Ryan is Senior Editor of Bank Innovation and Senior Director of INV Fintech. He began covering financial services in 2012 and has more than 15 years' experience in online journalism, which makes him quite old. He can be reached at

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