Australian challenger bank Archa takes a bow
Melbourne-based mobile-only challenger Archa has fired up as it plans to join the increasing number of Australian bank wannabes.
The firm says it is not currently a bank and does not hold an ADI (authorised deposit-taking institution) or restricted ADI licence.
That said, it is “working with regulators to make this happen”. At launch, it will be working with an unnamed partner who does hold an ADI to make sure it’s compliant with all applicable laws and regulations.
Right now it sees itself as a financial platform and says users can save, spend, travel, send and receive money via mobile phone. Funds can be stored in a fee-free global account; hold multiple currencies at once, and move between them at flat rates.
It will be launching these products soon and is calling for sign-ups to its waitlist. In terms of other services, users can withdraw cash overseas and use a card for everyday transactions.
The average age in its management team is 28. Archa adds: “The media calls us ‘millennials’, though that’s really a compliment, we think.”
For its technology, Archa is exploring how it can use blockchain technology and cryptocurrency networks. Its “waitlisters will be hearing a lot more about this in coming months”.
Archa was founded by Oliver Kidd (CEO). He has another job as well – working as a company secretary for Benitec Biopharma.
His background is not in banking. Previous roles include acting as solicitor for GRT Lawyers in Brisbane and working as an assistant company secretary for Discovery Metals.
FinTech Futures contacted Archa for more information about what it offers.
There weren’t a lot of details, however, the firm says: “Most of our team haven’t worked as bankers. Our team brings a dynamic mix of technology, big data, public relations, finance and customer service.”
Kidd also explains about why he started Archa. It’s for the same reasons as other challengers: “I started Archa because there was literally nothing about existing banks that appealed to me. Managing money is such an important part of our lives, and there should be a greater variety of retail banking products to reflect that.”
Archa may be all a-quiver with excitement, but so are all the others. Our comprehensive list of Australian challenger banks is here.
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