Revolut given nod to push into credit with European banking license

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Revolut Bank has been granted a full banking license in Europe through its Lithuanian base, simplifying its structure and marking a move to expand services on the continent. 

The decision by the European Central Bank (ECB) will grant Revolut new capabilities such as issuing consumer credit. 

Revolut's European customers will now be protected under the deposit guarantee scheme.

Before the the change, Revolut had been operating in the European Economic Area (EEA) through a specialized banking license and a payments license and passporting out its services. A specialized banking license allows banks to take deposits but not much else.

The EU's passporting system lets authorized firms trade freely within the bloc without the need for local licenses in each EU and EEA states. 

Revolut's recent launch in Portugal prompted regulators to clarify that the guarantee of deposits is associated with the Lithuanian protection mechanism, where it is headquartered, and not with the Portuguese Deposit Guarantee Fund.

Revolut Bank was first granted its specialized bank licence by the ECB in December 2018. The fintech started banking operations in 2020, offering protected deposit accounts and credit services in Lithuania and Poland, and has since then expanded operations to 18 EU markets. 

The move comes amid a global push by the bank to expand into new regions. Revolut also applied for both UK and US banking licenses earlier this year. A spokesperson for the company said it expects the UK license will be granted in 2022. 

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