Fascinating conversation with Anne Boden, CEO and founder of Starling Bank, led by James Ashton at the Don this morning.
Starling continues to expand its services portfolio, with an interesting mix of organic growth and partnering, creating a dynamic financial services marketplace.
On the B2B side it recently expanded its B2B offering therough the launch of client money accounts, under the client assets sourcebook (CASS) framework. In doing so it demonstrated its ability to leverage its technology stack to deliver compliant solutions for regulated businesses - on this occasion the provision of compliant account management for professional practices that hold money on behalf of clients.
Starling's constant drive for innovation can only be good for the sector. It will be fascinating to see how (and which) other players engage with them to leverage their API-led framework, technology stack and data capabilities over the coming months and years.
The rise of digital financial services market places, the increasing volume and variety of data they handle and share, and the ever increasing use of profiling, AI, automation and other tools raise significant compliance, privacy and ethical challenges.
It's good to see Starling facing this challenge head on, recognising their responsibility by publishing their ethics policy and so holding themselves up publicly to be measured against and held accountable to it: https://www.starlingbank.com/about/ethics-statement/
Hopefully others will follow suit, so these new market places evolve in a manner that not only promotes financial inclusion but also respects individuals' ownership of, and right to control, their personal data.
Starling is the first challenger bank to be a direct member of the Faster Payments Scheme and the only provider of real-time access to Faster Payments through APIs. Building on the real-time access to the Faster Payments Scheme (FPS), Starling has been working to create an API-led framework that allows regulated businesses the ability to fulfil their obligations under the Financial Conduct Authority’s CASS 7 rules. Goji, the investment manager and platform focused on Direct Lending, will be the first company to utilise Client Money Accounts by Starling Banking Services, providing their customers with a seamless ISA-compliant CASS solution that is run over Faster Payments.