Modulr lands EMI licence from Ireland’s central bank
Modulr, a UK-based payments fintech, has landed an electronic money institution (EMI) licence from Ireland’s central bank.
The start-up is based in both the UK and Ireland. The licence is for its Dublin-based entity, Modulr FS Europe – known as Modulr Europe.
Modulr powers the payments infrastructure of fintechs such as Revolut, Iwoca, Sage and Mode.
The licence will allow Modulr to extend its services across the entire European Union.
Fellow fintech Gemini, a US-based crypto exchange, recently made the move to Europe. It also filed for a licence to operate in Ireland as well as the UK, in case Brexit nullifies a UK-issued EMI licence in wider European.
In May, Modulr landed £18.9 million in growth funding in a round led by Highland Europe. Two months earlier, it became a principal issuing member of Visa.
And last year, the start-up became one of the few non-bank firms to gain access to Faster Payments and BACS, the two major UK payment schemes.
It claims “strong business growth” in the UK over the past four years. The licence marks its expansion into Europe.
Modulr offers a suite of payments products including a payments platform, real-time payments and payments application programme interfaces (APIs).
It essentially automates payment flows and embeds payments within customers platforms.
The start-up wants to provide “efficient access” to SEPA Instant – a pan-European credit transfer function which makes funds available in less than ten seconds.
Modulr focuses on serving software firms, merchants, and ‘specialist banks’ – and this will continue to be its focus across Europe.
The 500m vision
The fintech argues that digital alternatives to commercial payments have “historically been inaccessible and unaffordable to SMEs and enterprise alike”.
“The opportunity for a digital alternative to commercial and wholesale transaction banking is significant,” says Myles Stephenson, Modulr’s CEO.
“Software businesses across multiple industry sectors are identifying the need to [..] embed payments in customer journeys.
“We plan to build a truly digital, frictionless payments infrastructure for software platform partners to provide new payment experiences to more than 500 million people.”
Stephenson thinks “traditional banks face clear challenges in making embedded payments a reality via developer-friendly and seamless APIs”.
Modulr says it has shifted a total of more than £40 billion for customers through its platform.