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First direct pilots artha app for marketplace banking

22 February 2018  |  8868 views  |  2 First direct we logo

UK digital bank first direct has begun trialling an app that lets people see account information from all of their providers, as well as get money management tips and product suggestions - including from third parties.

First direct is working with fintech startup Bud on the pilot, which is part of parent firm HSBC's open banking strategy and marks the first time a major UK bank has made third party products available to customers.

The artha app allows users to bring accounts from the UK’s largest banks together in one place and categorise their spending data.

Then, based on the categorised data the app can analyse people’s needs to help them to find relevant financial products. For example, if the app saw that someone was paying a disproportionate amount for electricity, it could introduce them to utility switching services.

The marketplace will contain products and services from providers in areas such as investing and credit cards, with American Express, Nutmeg, Wealthify, MoneyFarm, and Flipper among those available during the pilot.

Uttiyo Dasgupta, head, transactional banking, HSBC, says: “The banking sector needs to innovate to meet changing customer needs, and at HSBC we’re investing significantly in digital innovation.

"Customer centric platforms like artha form part of HSBC’s wider Open Banking strategy, and allows us to test, learn and develop new services in a live environment and then deploy the new technologies at scale."

Comments: (2)

Michael Fuller
Michael Fuller - None - London 22 February, 2018, 15:22

Since when has first direct been a digital bank? It is a telephone bank primarily.

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John Quamina
John Quamina - Wipro - London 27 February, 2018, 17:34

Michael, When I joined First Direct about 20 years ago from Barclays I stopped going to a branch. I used the internet and the phone. When First Direct introduced the mobile app about 10 years or so ago I stopped phoning them except for the odd fund transfers to a new payee mostly using the internet. Last year not long after they introduced biosecurity I stopped using the internet. So I am perplexed, Michael what is a digital bank in your mind?

Something that reads my mind and makes me an offer I don't want?

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