JPMorgan to launch digital retail bank in UK next week


US banking giant JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE:JPM) is expected to launch its new digital retail bank Chase in the UK next week.

Sanoke Viswanathan, head of JPMorgan’s newly formed international consumer division, told the Financial Times the US bank would invest heavily to turn Chase into a serious force in the UK.

“This is a very big strategic commitment from the firm’s standpoint,” he said in an FT interview. “We will spend hundreds of millions before we get to break-even and get to a place where this is a sustainable business, and we’re not in a rush.”

Chase will initially offer only current accounts, but intends to expand into personal lending and investment and eventually mortgages.

“In the current conditions there is a massive oversupply of mortgages and lots of providers… but to be a full service bank and have consumer trust over the long term it is an important product line,” Viswanathan said.

JPMorgan bought British robo-adviser Nutmeg in June this year and Viswanathan said it would consider further acquisitions as it expands.

Chase is entering an increasingly competitive UK market, where digital-only start-ups such as Monzo, Starling and Revolut have taken market share from traditional banks.

Chase has about 600 staff in the UK, 500 of which are new hires, according to the FT.


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