Britain’s $33 billion banking app Revolut has swung into profit while still trapped in banking license limbo

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After years of losses, British banking app Revolut finally turned a corner last year. Its revenues almost doubled to £1.8 billion ($2.27 billion), helping it turn a pre-tax profit of £438 million ($553 million).

The news will be a relief for the fintech’s top-tier investors including Index Ventures, Softbank Vision Fund 2 and Balderton Capital, who have collectively poured over $2 billion into the company since 2015.

Revolut’s surge in profits was driven by a 46% jump in customers. Twelve million new customers were added, bringing the total to 38 million across the now 38 countries that Revolut operates in.

“Our customer base is expanding at impressive rates, and our diversified business model continues to fuel exceptional financial performance,” Nik Storonsky, CEO and co-founder of Revolut said.

That jump in customers powered a 59% increase in card and interchange fees (to £486 million) and a 46% rise in FX and the use of Revolut’s wealth platform, which includes crypto trading, to £395 million.

It’s not all good news, however. Revolut has been working on securing a U.K. banking license since 2021, when it first applied, and has repeatedly claimed that it would become an official bank “any day now.”

Without a banking license Revolut isn’t able to harness its U.K. customer deposits to offer complex lending products, nor can it boast of having the same customer deposit protections as official banks.

Today Storonsky briefly addressed the ongoing delays, stating: “We remain committed to our ongoing U.K. banking license application in addition to bringing the Revolut app to new markets and customers around the world.”

Revolut’s chairman Martin Gilbert also added: “We are continuing to work closely with the PRA (Prudential Regulation Authority) on our U.K. bank licence application.”

However, with the U.K. on the eve of a dramatic general election poised to swing the political landscape and introduce a Labour government with a new political agenda likely by the end of the week, Revolut’s hopes to “imminently” secure a license could be delayed once again.

According to The Financial Times, the fintech is instead working on a $500 million secondary share sale that will see existing shareholders, including employees, realize some of their gains at an expected valuation of over $40 billion.

Revolut last completed a funding round in 2021 when Softbank Vision Fund 2 and Tiger Global led an $800 million Series E funding round at a valuation of $33 billion.

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