US start-up Movenbank, which has positioned itself as a mobile-only, cardless, branchless bank, may be forced to offer companion, plastic cards to customers in order to be compliant with MasterCard rules.
Movenbank is working with MasterCard on a planned February 2013 launch which will see customers issued with contactless stickers that they can attach to their mobile phones, says founder and CEO Brett King.
Although nothing is yet settled, King concedes that Movenbank may be forced to offer a card option to customers in order to be compliant with MasterCard rules but maintains that the firm is still very much "anti-card" and will print 'Emergency use only - Do not use' on them, if they are required.
King admits that Movenbank would get more business in the US if they offered plastic, but insists the concept of cards goes against the whole philosophy of the Movenbank business.
"The problem with cards," he says "is that customers don't get the user experience that they get with the phone." Movenbank wants customers to be able to see their payments reflected in real time, which is possible with a mobile, but not with a card, he adds.
The firm plans to launch the first or second week in February next year, using US Social Securities numbers for KYC compliance.