N26 Adds Investing Just Days After Becoming a Bank

  • Philip Ryan
  • July 26, 2016
  • 3

© Can Stock Photo Inc. / MaximkostenkoN26, the German banking startup that has been called the Simple of Europe, announced that it had been granted a banking charter last week. Wasting no time, the company announced today it has added investment services to the account through a partnership with the roboadvisor vaamo.

This pairing of services is somewhat unusual, at least in the U.S., where retail banking and wealth management are typically separated. This separation can be problematic for banks, as retail customers begin amassing wealth and look elsewhere — outside the bank — for someone to manage it. For young people in the U.S., this often means roboadvisory services such as Betterment and Wealthfront.

N26, which until this week was known as Number26, aims to keep its customers inside the bank’s walls with the addition of vaamo, which is branded N26 Invest within the app. Customers swipe right to enter N26 Invest, and choose one of three risk profiles. They can also set up monthly deposits, and as with many roboadvisors, the fees are transparent.

Partnership is nothing new for N26, which has previously inked deals with London-based money transfer service Transferwise, as well as cash management solution Barzahlen, which compensates for N26’s lack of branches by turning retailers into cash management centers.

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Philip Ryan is Associate Editor of Bank Innovation. He worked as a web developer for the Fund for the City of New York for six years, and was an HTML developer at Ocean-7 Development back in the go-go ’90s. He has more than 15 years' experience in online journalism. He can be reached at pryanrmg1@gmail.com.

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