Starling launches in-app marketplace for financial products: Is this the future of banking?

12 September 2017

Shoppers will be the first to benefit from the launch of Starling Bank’s new in-app marketplace for financial products, with a rewards provider the first to partner with the challenger bank.

Flux is a rewards and receipts platform designed to collect loyalty points digitally at the point-of-sale and to generate digital receipts and eliminate wasteful paper receipts.

The introduction of technology to track and accumulate retailer loyalty points digitally could herald the end of carrying multiple rewards cards at once. It would also cut out the human errors of forgetfulness, ensuring points are always collected at the point-of-sale.

But while the technology is a promising step forward for consumers, the only high-street retailer signed up to Flux to date is the sandwich chain EAT. Food delivery service Bel-Air has also signed up to the loyalty program.

Matty Cusden-Ross, chief executive officer and founder of Flux, comments: “We fundamentally believe Flux can bring the most significant innovation in retail payments since contactless. In less than five months of sales we achieved full rollout with partners which share our vision: Starling Bank, EAT and Bel-Air. We’re immensely proud to be one step closer to digitising the world’s receipt data in the simplest way possible.”

Flux is the only third party available in Stirling’s app currently, but the marketplace already has the following financial services listed as coming soon:

  • Bill management
  • Charity
  • Credit scores
  • Insurance
  • Mortgage brokers
  • Savings and investments

Starling adds that it has already partnered with financial providers including Moneybox, Tail, and Transferwise. However, these providers are yet to appear in the app.

A new age of banking

The launch of Starling’s “Marketplace” for financial products has fired the starting gun on what many see as the future of digital banking, in which consumers can pick third party financial products that function directly within their digital banking apps.

It could eventually lead to the creation of a digital platform where an individual can manage their entire financial life in one place.

Megan Caywood, chief platform officer at Starling Bank, says: “Starling is built on the belief that customers should have ownership over their data. This is how they can build a better relationship with their money. The Starling Marketplace is central to turning this belief into something tangible, allowing third party developers, such as Flux, access to our API’s to build a range of apps and integrations with the goal of helping people manage their money more efficiently.”

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